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Category: Writing and Poetry

(some of) fernando pessoa's poetry

he's my favorite poet, i hope you like it

from "The Keeper of Sheep" - alberto caeiro


When I look, I see clear as a sunflower.

I’m always walking the roads

Looking right and left,

And sometimes looking behind...

And what I see every second

Is something I’ve never seen before,

And I know how to do this very well...

I know how to have the essential astonishment

That a child would have if it could really see

It was being born when it was being born...

I feel myself being born in each moment,

In the eternal newness of the world...

I believe in the world like I believe in a marigold,

Because I see it. But I don’t think about it

Because to think is to not understand...

The world wasn’t made for us to think about

(To think is to be sick in the eyes)

But for us to see and agree with...

I don’t have a philosophy: I have senses...

If I talk about Nature, it’s not because I know what it is,

But because I love it, and that’s why I love it,

Because when you love you never know what you love,

Or why you love, or what love is...

Loving is eternal innocence,

And the only innocence is not thinking...


There’s enough metaphysics in not thinking about anything.

What do I think about the world?

I have no idea what I think about the world!

If I get sick I’ll think about that stuff.

What idea do I have about things?

What opinion do I have about cause and effect?

What have I meditated on God and the soul

And on the creation of the world?

I don’t know. For me thinking about that stuff is shutting my eyes

And not thinking. It’s closing the curtains

(But my window doesn’t have curtains).

The mystery of things? I have no idea what mystery is!

The only mystery is there being someone who thinks about mystery.

When you’re in the sun and shut your eyes,

You start not knowing what the sun is

And you think a lot of things full of heat.

But you open your eyes and look at the sun

And you can’t think about anything anymore,

Because the sun’s light is worth more than the thoughts

Of all philosophers and all poets.

The light of the sun doesn’t know what it’s doing

So it’s never wrong and it’s common and good.

Metaphysics? What metaphysics do those trees have?

Of being green and bushy and having branches

And of giving fruit in their own time, which doesn’t make us think,

To us, who don’t know how to pay attention to them.

But what better metaphysics than theirs,

Which is not knowing what they live for

Not even knowing they don’t know?

“Inner constitution of things...”

“Inner meaning of the Universe...”

All that stuff is false, all that stuff means nothing.

It’s incredible that someone could think about things that way.

It’s like thinking reasons and purposes

When morning starts shining, and by the trees over there

A vague lustrous gold is driving the darkness away.

Thinking about the inner meaning of things

Is doing too much, like thinking about health when you’re healthy,

Or bringing a cup to a spring.

The only inner meaning of things

Is that they have no inner meaning at all.

I don’t believe in God because I never saw him.

If he wanted me to believe in him,

Without a doubt he would come to talk with me

And come in my door

Telling me, Here I am!

(Maybe this is ridiculous to the ears

Of someone who, because they don’t know what it is to look at things,

Doesn’t understand someone who talks about them

With the way of speaking looking at them teaches.)

But if God is the flowers and the trees

And the hills and the sun and the moonlight,

Then I believe in him,

Then I believe in him all the time,

And my whole life is an oration and a mass,

And a communion with my eyes and through my ears.

But if God is the trees and the flowers

And the hills and the moonlight and the sun,

Why should I call him God?

I call him flowers and trees and hills and sun and moonlight;

Because if he made himself for me to see

As the sun and moonlight and flowers and trees and hills,

If he appears to me as trees and hills

And moonlight and sun and flowers,

It’s because he wants me to know him

As trees and hills and flowers and moonlight and sun.

And that’s why I obey him,

(What more do I know about God than God knows about himself?),

I obey him by living, spontaneously,

Like someone opening his eyes and seeing,

And I call him moonlight and sun and flowers and trees and hills,

And I love him without thinking about him,

And I think him by seeing and hearing,

And I walk with him all the time.


To ponder God is to disobey him

Because God did not want us to know him,

That's why he has not shown himself to us.

Let us be calm and simple,

Like trees and streams,

And God will love us and make us

Us, like trees are trees,

And like streams are streams,

He will give to us the greenness of his spring

And a river to go to when we have concluded…

And will give us nothing more, for to give us more would be to take it from us.


Like someone who opens the door of their house on a summer day

And peers at the heat of the fields with his whole face,

Sometimes, suddenly, Nature smacks me

Right in the face of my feelings,

And I get confused, worried, wanting to perceive

I don’t know how or what...

But who’s telling me to want to perceive?

Who says I have to perceive?

When the Summer runs the light, hot

Hand of its breeze across my face,

I only have to feel pleased because it’s a breeze

Or displeased because it’s hot,

However I feel it,

So I should feel it like that because that’s how I feel it...

from "Loose Poems" - álvaro de campos

De la Musique

Ah, little by little, among the ancient trees

There emerges her form and I leave off thinking

Little by little, out of my own anguish I myself am emerging

The two forms meet in the clearing at the foot of the lake.

The two dream forms

Because this was just a moonbeam and my sadness

And the supposition of another thing

And the consequence of existing.

Truly, would those two forms have encountered each other

In the clearing at the foot of the lake? (...But if they do not exist? ...)

...In the clearing by the lake?...


The day turned to rain.

The morning, though, was rather sunny.

The day turned to rain.

All morning I was a bit blue.

Anticipation! Sadness? Nothing at all?

I don't know; from the moment I awoke I was down.

The day turned to rain.

I know. The rain's penumbra is elegant.

I know. The sun, being so common, oppresses the elegant.

I know. Susceptibility to changes of light is not elegant

But who told the sun or the others that I want to be elegant?

Give me blue skies and a shining sun.

Fog, rain, darkness—that I have within me.

Today all I want is quiet.

I might even love my place, so long as I don't have one.

I am even at the verge of sleep from the desire for quiet

Let’s not exaggerate!

I am decidedly sleepy, inexplicably so.

The day turned to rain.

Caresses? Endearments? Those are memories...

That only a child can have...

My lost break of day, my real skies of blue!

The day turned to rain.

Pretty mouth of the caretaker’s daughter,

Fruit pulp of a heart still unconsumed...

When did that happen? I don't know...

In the morning sky of blue. . .

The day turned to rain.

3 Kudos


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xalli's profile picture

wow, these are so beautiful-- thank you so much for sharing !

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i think so too ! its my pleasure to share :)

by aster ✮⋆˙; ; Report