Wild Portugal
Monsaraz Big Stone - Monsaraz, Alentejo

Fernando Pessoa - the metaphysical master


This quiet, observant poet was able to capture the Portuguese soul in a way that eluded everyone else who had tried--including other Portuguese. Pessoa’s statue sits, as did he, at a table in the19th century A Brasileira Café in the Chiado section of downtown Lisbon. He still watches the city around him. A house where he lived late in life is a museum today. Pessoa wrote under many different heteronyms--characters he created. At least 72 of them are known and the most common is Alberto Caeiro, a shepherd; Ricardo Reis, a man of letters; and Álvaro de Campos, a free spirit.


As Álvaro de Campos, Pessoa wrote the poem that is considered his masterpiece -- Tabacaria

Believe in myself? No. Not in anything.

Let Nature pour over my ardent head

Let its sun; its rain and wind find my hair.

And the rest may come if it comes, or if it has to come, or not.

Cardiac slaves to the stars,

We conquer the world even before getting out of bed;

But we wake up and it is opaque,

We get up and it is foreign,

We set out and it is the whole Earth,

Plus the Solar System and the Milky Way and the Indefinite.


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