Saturday, 13 June 2009

Mar Portugues


Não tenho ambições nem desejos,
Ser poeta não é a minha ambição,
É apenas a minha maneira de estar só
_____________________________
I have no ambitions and no desires.
To be a poet is not my ambition,
It's my way of being alone. *


-FERNANDO PESSOA

Today is Pessoa's birthday. Of course in 1888, though. His sylphic Portuguese has entranced me ever since I read Portuguese Sea /Mar Portugues.

MAR PORTUGUÊS
Ó mar salgado, quanto do teu sal
São lágrimas de Portugal!
Por te cruzarmos, quantas mães choraram,
Quantos filhos em vão rezaram!
Quantas noivas ficaram por casar
Para que fosses nosso, ó mar!

Valeu a pena? Tudo vale a pena
Se a alma não é pequena.

PORTUGUESE SEA
Salt-laden sea, how much of all your salt
Is tears of Portugal!
For us to cross you, how many sons have kept
Vigil in vain, and mothers wept!
Lived as old maids how many brides-to-be
Till death, that you might be ours, sea!

Was it worth? It is worth while, all,
If the soul is not small.

He still does even though he left us in 1935. November 30 to be precise.
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*From The Keeper of Herds /O Guardador de Rebanhos by Alberto Caeiro. Trans. Richard Zenith. Alberto Cairo is one of Pessoa's heteronyms.

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