mostrengo, FERNANDO PESSOA (1888-1935). Poem from Mensagem (from MENS AGitat molEM), a very unusual XX century book: symbolist epic with 44 poems in 3 Cycles: the first, Brasão (Coat-of-Arms), relates historical protagonists to Portuguese coat-of-arms. Second, Mar Português (Portuguese Sea), references the country's Age of Exploration and its Empire, ended with the death of King Sebastian. The third Cycle, Encoberto (The Hidden One), the most disturbing, refers PESSOA's vision of a future world.
Vénus II, CAMILO PESSANHA (1867-1926). Since he had the talent of re-writing his works from memory and the habit of giving his poems to close friends, many of his poems had either become lost or inadvertently destroyed. To counter this, Ana de Castro Osório urged PESSANHA to place them in a single volume, published as Clepsidra (1920). At first influenced by Cesário and Verlaine, Pessanha became the most pure of Symbolists. His poems greatly influenced the Orpheu group from Sá-Carneiro to Pessoa
minha cabeça estremece, HERBERTO HELDER (1930). One of the most important names in the contemporary literature. He transformed translation into a fundamental exercise of his work, giving a new dimension to both activities. Was closely linked to vanguards, but his momentum achieves a greater freedom by the singular poetic world he creates. In spite of his brilliant trajectory, has stepped back from limelights, refusing interviews, awards and events, dedicating himself exclusively to his work.
tu estás aqui, RUY BELO (1933-1978). He treats impermanence, childhood, ocean, woman and death, all inextricably tied: ocean and woman embodying the infinite embrace sought by the poet who mourns the lost omnipotence of his infant imagination and the lostness of his rapidly passing life, ultimately embraced by death. Awareness of death, not merely as an end but as a gradual existential expropriation, runs through his poems, which attempt to confer transcendence on some of that life draining away
o sentimento de um ocidental, CESÁRIO VERDE (1855-86). The Feeling of a Westerner is the greatest Portuguese poem of nineteenth century, The narrator wanders through Lisbon’s older neighborhoods as the evening falls and gives way – by the fourth section – to the “dead hours” of night. Many of CESÁRIO’s poems, set in rural outskirts, are at clear light of day, but here he visits Lisbon’s nocturnal side, to “show and examine what’s real”, to “seek and attain the perfection of things”.
a nau catrineta, ROMANCEIRO. Compilation of romances from portuguese oral tradition. A treasure of great poetic richness begun to be collected around 1820 by Almeida Garrett. In the introduction, he points the need to "study our early poetic sources, verse and prose legends, fables and old beliefs, [.. .] the tone and spirit of true Portuguese, in the great national book, which is the people and their traditions". Among the more beatiful are also Adozinda, Bernal, Bela Infanta, Santa Iria.