Straight poem


Fernando Pessoa
(Álvaro de Campos)

I never knew who had been beaten.
All my acquaintances have been champions in everything.

And I, so many times low, so many times pig, so many times vile,
I so often irresponsibly parasitized,
Inexcusably dirty,
I, who so often have not had the patience to shower,
I, who have so often been ridiculous, absurd,
That I have publicly wrapped my feet on the label mats,
That I have been grotesque, petty, submissive and arrogant,
That I have suffered trousseau and silence,
That when I am not silent, I have been even more ridiculous;
I, who have been comical to hotel maids,
I, who have felt the blink of an eye of the freight boys,
I, who have been financially embarrassed, borrowed without paying,
I, who, when the punch time came, I have crouched down
Out of the possibility of the punch;
I, who have suffered the anguish of ridiculous little things,
I find that I have no match for everything in this world.

Everyone I know who talks to me
Never had a ridiculous act, never suffered a buzz,
He was never but a prince – all of them princes – in his life …

I wish I heard the human voice from someone
To confess not a sin, but an infamy;
Let it count, not violence, but cowardice!
No, they are all the Ideal, if I hear them and tell me.
Who is there in this wide world that confesses to me that it was once vile?
O princes, my brothers,

Damn it, I’m sick of demigods!
Where is there people in the world?

So is it just me who is vile and wrong on this earth?

Could women not have loved them,
They may have been betrayed – but never ridiculous!
And I, who have been ridiculous without being betrayed,
How can I talk to my superiors without hesitation?
I, who have been vile, literally vile,
Vil in the mean and infamous sense of villainy.

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