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As easy as it may be, every gesture represents violation...


Action is a disease of thought, a cancer of the imagination. To act is to exile oneself. All action is incomplete and imperfect. The poem I dream of has no flaws except when I try to make it come true. (In the myth of Jesus this is written: God, by becoming man, can only end by martyrdom. The supreme dreamer has the supreme martyrdom as his son.)

The shattered shadows of the foliage, the trembling song of the birds, the outstretched arms of the rivers, shivering in the sun with their fresh shine, the greens, the poppies, and the simplicity of sensations — when I feel this, I miss him, like if you didn't feel it when you felt it.

The hours, like a car at dusk, creak back through the shadows of my thoughts. If I raise my eyes from my thoughts, they burn with the spectacle of the world.

To make a dream come true, you have to forget about it, distract your attention from it. That's why to accomplish is not to accomplish. Life is full of paradoxes like roses and thorns.

I would like to make the apotheosis of a new inconsistency, which remains as it were the negative constitution of the new anarchy of souls. Compiling a digest of my dreams always seemed to me to be useful to humanity. That's why I never refrained from trying it. The idea that what I was doing could be profitable hurt me, dried me up.

I have farms on the outskirts of life. I spend absences from the city of my Action among the trees and flowers of my reverie. My green retreat doesn't even reach the echoes of the life of my gestures. I sleep my memory like endless processions. In the chalices of my meditation I only drink the smile of blond wine; I only drink it with my eyes, closing them, and Life passes by like a distant candle.

The sunny days make me feel like I don't have it. The blue sky, and the white clouds, the trees, the missing flute — eclogues incomplete due to the shuddering of the branches... All this and the harp changes where I touch the lightness of my fingers.

The vegetal academy of silences... your name sounding like poppies... the tanks... my return... the crazy priest who went crazy at mass. These memories are from my dreams... I don't close my eyes but I don't see anything... The things I see are not here... Waters...

In a tangled mess, the green of the trees is part of my blood. Life beats in my distant heart... I was not destined for reality, and life wanted to come to me.

The torture of fate! Who knows if I'll die tomorrow! Who knows if something terrible is going to happen to me today for my soul!... Sometimes, when I think about these things, I am terrified by the supreme tyranny that makes us have to look pure not knowing what event the uncertainty of meet me.


Book of Disquiet. Vol. Fernando Pessoa. (Organisation and setting of unpublished works by Teresa Sobral Cunha.) Coimbra: Presença, 1990.

"Confessional phase", according to António Quadros (ed.) in Book of Disquiet, by Bernardo Soares, Vol II. Fernando Pessoa. Mem Martins: Europe-America, 1986.

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