Poetry in Sophia’s verses

on Oct 1, 2019 in Landing | No Comments

Good: Poetry

Better: in Sophia’s verses

It would be Sophia de Mello Breyner Andresen’s 100th birthday this October. A giant-poet, woman-citizen and mother of five, Sophia left her mark on the 20th century. In a preface to her book, Geografia, the writer and expert on classical literature, Frederico Lourenço, writes that there are “some of the most extraordinary moments in the entire history of poetry in Portuguese”. “I must say: it contains poetry that competes with famous verses by Virgil, Racine and Keats for the prize of the most beautiful verse of universal literature”. “Poem by Helena Lanari” features in the chapter “Brazil or from the other side of the sea”:

“I like to hear the Portuguese of Brazil
Where words recuperate their total substance
Concrete like fruit distinctive like the birds
I like to hear each syllable of words
Without the loss of even just a fifth of vowel

When Helena Lanari would say “coconut palm”
The coconut palm would be more vegetable”

Geografia, Assírio & Alvim \\\ €13,30 \\\ poem translated by Frederick G. Williams, Poets of Portugal, Luso-Brazilian Books \\\ €8,2

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