Ricardo Eliécer Neftalí Reyes Basoalto was born on 12 July, 1904 in Parral, in southern Chile. However, it was in Temuco where he studied, grew up and began to publish under his pen name, Pablo Neruda.
In Santiago he studied French and pedagogy at Universidad de Chile and participated in Student Council activities. In 1923 he published Crepusculario (Crepusculary), his first book, which was followed by an extensive body of works, including Veinte poemas de amor y una canción desesperada (“Twenty Poems of Love and a Song of Despair”), Canto general (“General Song”), Residencia en la tierra (“Residence on Earth”).
Poet, traveler and politician, he was a diplomat in Burma, Spain, Mexico and France.. From Madrid, where he published España en el corazón (“Spain in My Heart”), he collaborated so that Chile would open its doors to exiled Republicans. He was a senator for the Communist Party, was persecuted and exiled in 1949. In 1969, he was a preliminary candidate to the Presidency of the Republic, but withdrew his candidacy in favor of Salvador Allende.
His extensive literary trajectory was crowned with the Nobel Prize for Literature in 1971, two years before his dead. He left behind his memories, Confieso que he vivido (“I Confess that I Have Lived”) among other works published posthumously.