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The venture was not successful and closed down in , but the name ibis , [9] the sacred bird of Ancient Egypt and inventor of the alphabet in Greek mythology , would remain an important symbolic reference for him. Pessoa returned to his uncompleted formal studies, complementing his British education with self-directed study of Portuguese culture. Only two issues were published Jan—Feb—Mar and Apr—May—Jun , the third failed to appear due to funding difficulties.

Lost for many years, this issue was finally recovered and published in Along with the artist Ruy Vaz, Pessoa also founded the art journal Athena —25 , [13] in which he published verses under the heteronyms Alberto Caeiro and Ricardo Reis. From to , when his family returned from Pretoria after the death of his stepfather, he lived in fifteen different locations in the city, [14] moving from one rented room to another depending on his fluctuating finances and personal troubles.

Soares also supposedly lived in the same downtown street, a world that Pessoa knew quite well due to his long career as freelance correspondence translator. Indeed, from until his death in , Pessoa worked in twenty-one firms located in Lisbon's downtown, sometimes in two or three of them simultaneously. In his daydream soliloquy he also wrote about Lisbon in the first half of the 20th century. Soares describes crowds in the streets, buildings, shops, traffic, river Tagus, the weather, and even its author, Fernando Pessoa:.

Fairly tall and thin, he must have been about thirty years old. It seemed to suggest various kinds: hardships, anxieties, and the suffering born of the indifference that comes from having already suffered a lot. A statue of Pessoa sitting at a table below can be seen outside A Brasileira , one of the preferred places of young writers and artists of Orpheu' s group during the s.

In , Pessoa wrote in English a guidebook to Lisbon but it remained unpublished until A poem is an intellectualized impression, an idea made emotion, communicated by others by means of a rhythm. This rhythm is double in one, like the concave and convex aspects of the same arc: it is made up of a verbal or musical rhythm and of a visual or image rhythm which concurs inwardly with it.

Sensationism began with the friendship between Fernando Pessoa...

The translation of a poem should therefore conform absolutely 1 to the idea or emotion which constitutes the poem, 2 to the verbal rhythm in which that idea or emotion is expressed; it should conform relatively to the inner or visual rhythm, keeping to the images themselves when it can, but keeping always to the type of image. In —14, while living with his aunt "Anica" and cousins, [30] Pessoa took part in "semi-spiritualist sessions" that were carried out at home, but he was considered a "delaying element" by the other members of the sessions.

Pessoa's interest in spiritualism was truly awakened in the second half of , while translating theosophist books. This was further deepened in the end of March , when he suddenly started having experiences where he became a medium , which were revealed through automatic writing. On 24 June, Pessoa wrote an impressive letter to his aunt and godmother, then living in Switzerland with her daughter and son in law, in which he describes this "mystery case" that surprised him. Besides automatic writing, Pessoa stated also that he had "astral" or "etherial visions" and was able to see "magnetic auras" similar to radiographic images.

He felt "more curiosity than fear", but was respectful towards this phenomenon and asked secrecy, because "there is no advantage, but many disadvantages" in speaking about this. Mediumship exerted a strong influence in Pessoa's writings, who felt "sometimes suddenly being owned by something else" or having a "very curious sensation" in the right arm, which was "lifted into the air" without his will.

Looking in the mirror, Pessoa saw several times what appeared to be the heteronyms : his "face fading out" and being replaced by the one of "a bearded man", or another one, four men in total. Pessoa also developed a strong interest in astrology , becoming a competent astrologist. In , he created the heteronym Raphael Baldaya , an astrologist who planned to write "System of Astrology" and "Introduction to the Study of Occultism". Born on 13 June, Pessoa was native of Gemini and had Scorpio as rising sign. The characters of the main heteronyms were inspired by the four astral elements: air, fire, water and earth.

It means that Pessoa and his heteronyms altogether comprised the full principles of ancient knowledge. Those heteronyms were designed according to their horoscopes , all including Mercury , the planet of literature. Astrology was part of his everyday life and Pessoa kept that interest until his death, which he was able to predict with some accuracy. As a mysticist , Pessoa was an enthusiast of esotericism , occultism , hermetism , numerology and alchemy. Along with spiritualism and astrology, he also paid attention to neopaganism , theosophy , rosicrucianism and freemasonry , which strongly influenced his literary work.

He has declared himself a Pagan, in the sense of an "intellectual mystic of the sad race of the Neoplatonists from Alexandria" and a believer in "the Gods, their agency and their real and materially superior existence". Pessoa also wrote on Crowley's doctrine of Thelema in several fragments, including Moral.

I see that, in a note on page 14 of his Emblematic Freemasonery , published by you in , he says, in respect of the earlier work: "A new and revised edition is in the forefront of my literary schemes. Since I am writing on these subjects, I should like to put a question which perhaps you can reply to; but please do not do so if the reply involves any inconvenience. I believe The Occult Review was, or is, issued by yourselves; I have not seen any number for a long time. My question is in what issue of that publication — it was certainly a long while ago — an article was printed relating to the Roman Catholic Church as a Secret Society, or, alternatively, to a Secret Society within the Roman Catholic Church.

Later on, he was also influenced by modernists as W. Eliot , among many other writers. However, in , the prestigious literary journal Athenaeum included one of those poems. Politically, Pessoa described himself as "a British-style conservative, that is to say, liberal within conservatism and absolutely anti-reactionary," and adhered closely to the Spencerian individualism of his upbringing. His cause of death is commonly given as cirrhosis of the liver, due to alcoholism, [55] [54] [56] though this is disputed: others attribute his death to pancreatitis again from alcoholism , [57] [58] or other ailments.

In his lifetime, he published four books in English and one alone in Portuguese: Mensagem Message. However, he left a lifetime of unpublished, unfinished or just sketchy work in a domed, wooden trunk 25, [60] manuscript and typed pages which have been housed in the Portuguese National Library since The heavy burden of editing this huge work is still in progress. I wrote thirty some poems in a row, all in a kind of ecstasy, the nature of which I shall never fathom. It was the triumphant day of my life, and I shall never have another like it. I began with a title, The Keeper of Sheep.

And what followed was the appearance of someone within me to whom I promptly assigned the name of Alberto Caeiro. Please excuse the absurdity of what I am about to say, but there had appeared within me, then and there, my own master. It was my immediate sensation. Immediately and totally Pessoa's earliest heteronym , at the age of six, was Chevalier de Pas. Other childhood heteronyms included Dr.


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The main reason for this was that, although Search is English, he was born in Lisbon as his author. But Search represents a transition heteronym that Pessoa used while searching to adapt to the Portuguese cultural reality. Translator Richard Zenith notes that Pessoa eventually established at least seventy-two heteronyms.

The heteronyms possess distinct biographies, temperaments, philosophies, appearances, writing styles and even signatures. How do I write in the name of these three? Ricardo Reis, after an abstract meditation, which suddenly takes concrete shape in an ode. His prose is the same as mine, except for certain formal restraint that reason imposes on my own writing, and his Portuguese is exactly the same — whereas Caeiro writes bad Portuguese, Campos writes it reasonably well but with mistakes such as "me myself" instead of "I myself", etc..

Alberto Caeiro was Pessoa's first great heteronym; it is summarized by Pessoa as follows: "He sees things with the eyes only, not with the mind. He does not let any thoughts arise when he looks at a flower The stupendous fact about Caeiro is that out of this sentiment, or rather, absence of sentiment, he makes poetry. What this means, and what makes Caeiro such an original poet is the way he apprehends existence. He does not question anything whatsoever; he calmly accepts the world as it is. The recurrent themes to be found in nearly all of Caeiro's poems are wide-eyed childlike wonder at the infinite variety of nature, as noted by a critic.

He is free of metaphysical entanglements. Central to his world-view is the idea that in the world around us, all is surface: things are precisely what they seem, there is no hidden meaning anywhere. He manages thus to free himself from the anxieties that batter his peers; for Caeiro, things simply exist and we have no right to credit them with more than that.

Caeiro attains happiness by not questioning, and by thus avoiding doubts and uncertainties. He apprehends reality solely through his eyes, through his senses. Octavio Paz called him the innocent poet. Paz made a shrewd remark on the heteronyms: In each are particles of negation or unreality. Reis believes in form, Campos in sensation, Pessoa in symbols.

Caeiro doesn't believe in anything.

Poemas de Álvaro de Campos by Fernando Pessoa

He exists. Poetry before Caeiro was essentially interpretative; what poets did was to offer an interpretation of their perceived surroundings; Caeiro does not do this. Instead, he attempts to communicate his senses, and his feelings, without any interpretation whatsoever. Caeiro attempts to approach Nature from a qualitatively different mode of apprehension; that of simply perceiving an approach akin to phenomenological approaches to philosophy. Poets before him would make use of intricate metaphors to describe what was before them; not so Caeiro: his self-appointed task is to bring these objects to the reader's attention, as directly and simply as possible.

Caeiro sought a direct experience of the objects before him. As such it is not surprising to find that Caeiro has been called an anti-intellectual, anti-Romantic, anti-subjectivist, anti-metaphysical He is in this sense very unlike his creator Fernando Pessoa: Pessoa was besieged by metaphysical uncertainties; these were, to a large extent, the cause of his unhappiness; not so Caeiro: his attitude is anti-metaphysical; he avoided uncertainties by adamantly clinging to a certainty: his belief that there is no meaning behind things.

Things, for him, simply—are. Caeiro represents a primal vision of reality, of things. He is the pagan incarnate. Indeed, Caeiro was not simply a pagan but paganism itself. The critic Jane M. Sheets sees the insurgence of Caeiro—who was Pessoa's first major heteronym—as essential in founding the later poetic personas : By means of this artless yet affirmative anti-poet, Caeiro, a short-lived but vital member of his coterie, Pessoa acquired the base of an experienced and universal poetic vision. After Caeiro's tenets had been established, the avowedly poetic voices of Campos, Reis and Pessoa himself spoke with greater assurance.

Reis, both a character and a heteronym of Fernando Pessoa himself, [73] sums up his philosophy of life in his own words, admonishing, "See life from a distance. Never question it. There's nothing it can tell you. He is a modern pagan who urges one to seize the day and accept fate with tranquility.


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The seeker will find in all things the abyss, and doubt in himself. Believing in the Greek gods , yet living in a Christian Europe, Reis feels that his spiritual life is limited and true happiness cannot be attained. This, added to his belief in Fate as a driving force for all that exists, as such disregarding freedom, leads to his epicureanist philosophy, which entails the avoidance of pain, defending that man should seek tranquility and calm above all else, avoiding emotional extremes.

Where Caeiro wrote freely and spontaneously, with joviality, of his basic, meaningless connection to the world, Reis writes in an austere, cerebral manner, with premeditated rhythm and structure and a particular attention to the correct use of the language when approaching his subjects of, as characterized by Richard Zenith, "the brevity of life, the vanity of wealth and struggle, the joy of simple pleasures, patience in time of trouble, and avoidance of extremes". In his detached, intellectual approach, he is closer to Fernando Pessoa's constant rationalization, as such representing the orthonym's wish for measure and sobriety and a world free of troubles and respite, in stark contrast to Caeiro's spirit and style.

As such, where Caeiro's predominant attitude is that of joviality, his sadness being accepted as natural "My sadness is a comfort for it is natural and right. It is my custom to walk the roads Looking right and left And …. The mystery of things — where is it? Why doesn't it come out To show us at least that it's ….

On an incredibly clear day, The kind when you wish you'd done lots of work So that you wouldn't have …. Today someone read me St. Francis of Assisi. How could a man who was …. To see the fields and the river It isn't enough to open the window. To see the trees and the flowers Ah, the freshness in the face of leaving a task undone!

Fernando Pessoa

To be remiss is to be positively out in the country! Some people tell me that everything is symbols. My soul shattered like an empty vase. It fell irretrievably down the stairs. If fell from the hands of the …. I want the good, I want the bad, and in the end I want nothing. I toss in bed, uncomfortable on my right side, on …. When will this inner night — the universe — end And I — my soul — have my day? When will I wake up from being …. Quit …. Countless lives inhabit us.

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I always feel like a stranger. O night eternal, call me your son And take me into your arms. The washwoman beats the laundry Against the stone in the tank. She sings because she sings and is sad I have in me like a haze Which holds and which is nothing A nostalgia for nothing at all, The desire for …. Fernando Pessoa. To see the trees and the flowers. Ah, the freshness in the face of leaving a task undone! Note My soul shattered like an empty vase. Oxfordshire I want the good, I want the bad, and in the end I want nothing.

Magnificat When will this inner night — the universe — end And I — my soul — have my day?


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Abdication O night eternal, call me your son And take me into your arms. She sings because she sings and is sad. I have in me like a haze Which holds and which is nothing A nostalgia for nothing at all, The desire for …. Heteronyms Alberto Caeiro. Nederlands Letterenfonds. Gemeente Rotterdam. Droom en Daad. Lira Fonds. Stichting Dioraphte.