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Best Famous Fernando Pessoa Poems

Here is a collection of the all-time best famous Fernando Pessoa poems. This is a select list of the best famous Fernando Pessoa poetry. Reading, writing, and enjoying famous Fernando Pessoa poetry (as well as classical and contemporary poems) is a great past time. These top poems are the best examples of Fernando Pessoa poems.

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Written by Fernando Pessoa |

Portuguese sea

Oh salted sea, how much of your salt
Are tears of Portugal!
For crossing you, how many mothers wept,
How many children prayed in vain!

How many brides remained unmarried
For you to be ours, Oh sea!
Was it worth it? everything is worthwhile
If the soul is not small.
The ones who want to go beyond Boyador Have to go beyond pain.
God overboard danger and the abyss gave But it was in it that he mirrored the sky.

Written by Fernando Pessoa |

Ode of Ricardo Reis

To be great, be whole: nothing
Yours exaggerate nor delete.
Be whole  at everything.
Be yourself at the little things you do.
So that in each lake the whole moon Shines because high it lives.

Written by Fernando Pessoa |

Beauty and love let no one separate,

Beauty and love let no one separate,

Whom exact Nature did to each other fit,

Giving to Beauty love as finishing fate

And to Love beauty as true colour of it.

Let he but friend be who the soul finds fair,

But let none love outside the body's thought,

So the seen couple's togetherness shall bear

Truth to the beauty each in the other sought.

I could but love thee out of mockery

Of love and thee and mine own ugliness;

Therefore thy beauty I sing and wish not thee,

Thanking the Gods I long not out of place,

Lest, like a slave that for kings' robes doth long,

Obtained, shall with mere wearing do them wrong.

More great poems below...

Written by Fernando Pessoa |


The poet is a faker.
Pretends so completely That comes to pretend that is pain The pain that he really feels.
And those who read what he writes, In the pain read they feel right , Not the two that he had, But only the one which they have not.
And so on the wheel rails It spins to entertain the reason, This train of rope Called heart.

Written by Fernando Pessoa |

Para Ser Grande

 Para ser grande, sê inteiro: nada
 Teu exagera ou exclui.
Sê todo em cada coisa.
Põe quanto és No mínimo que fazes.
Assim em cada lago a lua toda Brilha, porque alta vive.

Written by Fernando Pessoa |

As to a child, I talked my heart asleep

As to a child, I talked my heart asleep

With empty promise of the coming day,

And it slept rather for my words made sleep

Than from a thought of what their sense did say.

For did it care for sense, would it not wake

And question closer to the morrow's pleasure?

Would it not edge nearer my words, to take

The promise in the meting of its measure?

So, if it slept, 'twas that it cared but for

The present sleepy use of promised joy,

Thanking the fruit but for the forecome flower

Which the less active senses best enjoy.

Thus with deceit do I detain the heart

Of which deceit's self knows itself a part.

Written by Fernando Pessoa |

How can I think, or edge my thoughts to action,

How can I think, or edge my thoughts to action,

When the miserly press of each day's need

Aches to a narrowness of spilled distraction

My soul appalled at the world's work's time-greed?

How can I pause my thoughts upon the task

My soul was born to think that it must do

When every moment has a thought to ask

To fit the immediate craving of its cue?

The coin I'd heap for marrying my Muse

And build our home i'th' greater Time-to-be

Becomes dissolved by needs of each day's use

And I feel beggared of infinity,

Like a true-Christian sinner, each day flesh-driven

By his own act to forfeit his wished heaven.

Written by Fernando Pessoa |

When in the widening circle of rebirth

When in the widening circle of rebirth

To a new flesh my travelled soul shall come,

And try again the unremembered earth

With the old sadness for the immortal home,

Shall I revisit these same differing fields

And cull the old new flowers with the same sense,

That some small breath of foiled remembrance yields,

Of more age than my days in this pretence?

Shall I again regret strange faces lost

Of which the present memory is forgot

And but in unseen bulks of vagueness tossed

Out of the closed sea and black night of Thought?

Were thy face one, what sweetness will't not be,

Though by blind feeling, to remember thee!

Written by Fernando Pessoa |

Oh to be idle loving idleness!

Oh to be idle loving idleness!

But I am idle all in hate of me;

Ever in action's dream, in the false stress

Of purposed action never set to be.

Like a fierce beast self-penned in a bait-lair,

My will to act binds with excess my action,

Not-acting coils the thought with raged despair,

And acting rage doth paint despair distraction.

Like someone sinking in a treacherous sand,

Each gesture to deliver sinks the more;

The struggle avails not, and to raise no hand,

Though but more slowly useless, we've no power.

Hence live I the dead life each day doth bring,

Repurposed for next day's repurposing.

Written by Fernando Pessoa |

Thy words are torture to me, that scarce grieve thee--

Thy words are torture to me, that scarce grieve thee--

That entire death shall null my entire thought;

And I feel torture, not that I believe thee,

But that I cannot disbelieve thee not.

Shall that of me that now contains the stars

Be by the very contained stars survived?

Thus were Fate all unjust. Yet what truth bars

An all unjust Fate's truth from being believed?

Conjecture cannot fit to the seen world

A garment of its thought untorn or covering,

Or with its stuffed garb forge an otherworld

Without itself its dead deceit discovering;

So, all being possible, an idle thought may

Less idle thoughts, self-known no truer, dismay.

Written by Fernando Pessoa |

When I do think my meanest line shall be

When I do think my meanest line shall be

More in Time's use than my creating whole,

That future eyes more clearly shall feel me

In this inked page than in my direct soul;

When I conjecture put to make me seeing

Good readers of me in some aftertime,

Thankful to some idea of my being

That doth not even my with gone true soul rime;

An anger at the essence of the world,

That makes this thus, or thinkable this wise,

Takes my soul by the throat and makes it hurled

In nightly horrors of despaired surmise,

And I become the mere sense of a rage

That lacks the very words whose waste might 'suage.

Written by Fernando Pessoa |

As a bad orator, badly o'er-book-skilled,

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.

Written by Fernando Pessoa |

I could not think of thee as piecèd rot,

I could not think of thee as piecèd rot,

Yet such thou wert, for thou hadst been long dead;

Yet thou liv'dst entire in my seeing thought

And what thou wert in me had never fled.

Nay, I had fixed the moments of thy beauty--

Thy ebbing smile, thy kiss's readiness,

And memory had taught my heart the duty

To know thee ever at that deathlessness.

But when I came where thou wert laid, and saw

The natural flowers ignoring thee sans blame,

And the encroaching grass, with casual flaw,

Framing the stone to age where was thy name,

I knew not how to feel, nor what to be

Towards thy fate's material secrecy.

Written by Fernando Pessoa |

How many masks wear we, and undermasks,

How many masks wear we, and undermasks,

Upon our countenance of soul, and when,

If for self-sport the soul itself unmasks,

Knows it the last mask off and the face plain?

The true mask feels no inside to the mask

But looks out of the mask by co-masked eyes.

Whatever consciousness begins the task

The task's accepted use to sleepness ties.

Like a child frighted by its mirrored faces,

Our souls, that children are, being thought-losing,

Foist otherness upon their seen grimaces

And get a whole world on their forgot causing;

And, when a thought would unmask our soul's masking,

Itself goes not unmasked to the unmasking.

Written by Fernando Pessoa |

The world is woven all of dream and error

The world is woven all of dream and error

And but one sureness in our truth may lie--

That when we hold to aught our thinking's mirror

We know it not by knowing it thereby.

For but one side of things the mirror knows,

And knows it colded from its solidness.

A double lie its truth is; what it shows

By true show's false and nowhere by true place.

Thought clouds our life's day-sense with strangeness, yet

Never from strangeness more than that it's strange

Doth buy our perplexed thinking, for we get

But the words' sense from words--knowledge, truth, change.

We know the world is false, not what is true.

Yet we think on, knowing we ne'er shall know.