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Sonnet VI.

Fernando Pessoa 1888 (Lisbon District) – 1935 (Lisbon)



As a bad orator, badly o'er-book-skilled,
Doth overflow his purpose with made heat,
And, like a clock, winds with withoutness willed
What should have been an inner instinct's feat;
Or as a prose-wit, harshly poet turned,
Lacking the subtler music in his measure,
With useless care labours but to be spurned,
Courting in alien speech the Muse's pleasure;
I study how to love or how to hate,
Estranged by consciousness from sentiment,
With a thought feeling forced to be sedate
Even when the feeling's nature is violent;
As who would learn to swim without the river,
When nearest to the trick, as far as ever.
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Submitted on August 03, 2020

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Fernando Pessoa

Biography of Fernando Pessoa (1888-1935): One of the most prominent modernist poet of the Portuguese language. He was born in Lisbon, Portugal. He published poems under his real name and dozens of other personas. Apart from Fernando Pessoa himself (“ele mesmo”), the most famous ones are: Alberto Caiero, Álvaro de Campos e Ricardo Reis; each one with his own personality, mannerisms and profession: Álvaro de Campos (an engineer, who had been educated in England; influenced by symbolism); Ricardo Reis (a physician, a pastoral poet); Alberto Caieiro (a countryman and poet, who wrote simple verses). more…

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