Florbela Espanca - Árvores do Alentejo (English translation)

Portuguese

Árvores do Alentejo

Horas mortas... Curvada aos pés do Monte
A planície é um brasido... E, torturadas,
As árvores sangrentas, revoltadas,
Gritam a Deus a bênção duma fonte!
 
E quando, manhã alta, o sol posponte
A oiro a giesta, a arder pelas estradas,
Esfíngicas, recortam desgrenhadas
Os seus trágicos perfis no horizonte!
 
Árvores! Corações, almas que choram,
Almas iguais à minha, almas que imploram
Em vão remédio para tanta mágoa!
 
Árvores! Não choreis! Olhai e vede:
- Também ando a gritar, morta de sede,
Pedindo a Deus a minha gota de água!
 
Submitted by Metodius on Fri, 13/10/2017 - 14:00
Submitter's comments:

Possibly one of Florbela Espanca's most famous poems, it was dedicated to her good friend Guido Battelli, who was a visiting lecturer of History of Italian Literature in the School of Humanities at the University of Coimbra. Guido Battelli was responsible for encouraging Florbela Espanca to finally publish the book 'Charneca em Flor' (Blossomed Moorland), which is considered the greatest and best of her entire career as a poetess.

Sadly, Espanca committed suicide on the 8th of December, 1930 by overdosing on barbiturates - merely months before the publication of the book that would consecrate her as one of Portuguese literature's brightest and most accomplished poets.

I hope that you enjoy the poem, which is beyond and above a masterpiece.

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English translation

Trees of Alentejo

Empty hours... Kneeling at the feet of the mountain
The plateau radiates sheer heat... And, tormented,
The bleeding trees, infuriated,
Clamour up to God for the blessing of a fountain!
 
And when, in the high noon, the sun emerges
Like gold, like broom blossoms, to set the roads alight,
They cut, sphinx-like yet dishevelled
Their tragic outlines on the horizon.
 
Oh, trees! Wounded hearts, crying souls;
Souls like my own, souls that implore
In vain, for a solution to so much sorrow!
 
Oh, trees! Do not cry! Look and see:
- I also walk around screaming, dying of thirst,
As I ask God for my own drop of water!
 
Submitted by Metodius on Fri, 13/10/2017 - 14:15
Florbela Espanca: Top 6
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