Las manos del día / The Hands of Day
Poetry , 1968
The poems celebrate everyday labor and declare Neruda's wish to take part in the great human making of the day.
"Above all else in The Hands of Day, the beloved Chilean poet celebrates the transformative powers of others' hands, of those who build with wood or metal or who harvest the grain or the fish, of those who make the wine, and of the powerful hands he entreats to help him change the profile of the planet, to shape the triangular stars the traveler needs. He also meditates on the role of the writer... [on] focusing [one's] energies on creating work and lives of greater integrity, and he implicates himself among those artists who carry like a "small beast" on their shoulders the capacity for self-delusion." William O'Daly
Self-effacing and wise, empathic and forlorn, Neruda ultimately leaves the reader with a grand vision of hope for humanity.