The Moon That Splotches The Still Earth With Shadows

And what I read,
instead of being like a nearly invisible suit that sometimes oppresses me,
is the external world’s tremendous and remarkable clarity,
the sun that sees everyone,
the moon that splotches the still earth with shadows,
the wide expanses that end in the sea,
the blackly solid trees whose tops greenly wave,
the steady peace of ponds on farms,
the terraced slopes with their paths overgrown by grape-vines.

I’m the ruins of buildings that were never more than ruins,
whose builder,
halfway through,
got tired of thinking about what he was building.

Wise is the man who has the potential for height
in his muscles but who renounces climbing in his consciousness.

The fictions of my imagination.

When I first came to Lisbon I used to hear,
from the apartment above ours,
the sound of scales played on a piano,
the monotonous practising of a girl I never actually saw.

My life inhabits the shells of their personalities.

As I dip my pen in the inkwell,

the door of the smoking room opens up—almost right next
to where I feel I am—to reveal the face of the stranger.

Treaties signed by stained-glass kings.

It were better not to ow in life,
better to let the dream dry up.

—Tagus, A Pesca das Pérolas