Salazar and the New State in the writings of Fernando Pessoa.

Excerpt from article by Jose Barreto (Sep 22, 2009):

Pessoa's change of attitude dates from the end of February, that is to say, after the literary prize-giving party and the banquet given to "nationalist intellectuals." He never admitted to being a situacionista in his writings again, although he did not stop recognizing Salazar's qualities and a certain merit to his government. But the "Politica do Espirito" was now perfectly well defined and had become completely unacceptable to Pessoa. Salazar and Antonio Ferro were putting at stake, ostensively and repressively, everything the Orpheu poet and writer of the "Sensacionismo" manifestos had always believed in with regard to artistic freedom and independence of the intellectual elite. 

In March he penned his first satirical poems about Salazar. Anonymous typewritten copies of the "triple poem" were then passed around secretly and only published by Jorge de Sena in Brazil in 1960. Salazar was now "the little tyrant." The final disillusionment that Salazar provoked was illustrated by a play on his name: the rain dissolved the salt (sal) and only bad luck (azar) was left.

   Antonio de Oliveira Salazar.         [Antonio de Oliveira Salazar.
   Trez nomes em sequencia regular ...  Just three names in a row ...
   Antonio e Antonio.                   Antonio is Antonio.
   Oliveira e uma arvore.               Oliveira is a tree.
   Salazar e so apelido.                Salazar is just a surname.
   Ate ai esta bem.                     So far so good.
   O que nao faz sentido                What makes no sense
   E o sentido que isto tem.            is the meaning it carries.

   Este senhor Salazar                  This Mr. Salazar
   E feito de sal e azar.               Is made up of salt and bad
   Se um dia chove,                     If it rains one day
   A agua dissolve                      The water will dissolve
   O sal,                               The salt,
   E sob o ceu                          And under a sky
   Fica so o azar, e natural.           Only bad luck remains,
   Oh, c'os diabos!                     Oh, damn!
   Parece que ja choveu ...             It seems it's already rained

   Coitadinho                           Poor
   Do tiraninho!                        little tyrant!
   Nao bebe vinho,                      He doesn't drink wine,
   Nem sequer sosinho ...               Not even when he's on his own
   Bebe a verdade                       He drinks truth
   E a liberdade,                       And freedom
   E com tal agrado                     And with such delight
   Que ja comecam                       There's hardly any left
   A escassear no mercado.              In the marketplace.

   Coitadinho                           Poor
   Do tiraninho!                        little tyrant!
   O meu visinho                        My neighbour
   Esta na Guine,                       Is in Guinea
   E o meu padrinho                     My godfather
   No Limoeiro                          In the Limoeiro prison
   Aqui ao pe,                          Just around the corner
   Mas ninguem sabe porque.             But nobody knows why.

   Mas, enfim, e                        But, in the end,
   Certo e certeiro                     It's only right and proper
   Que isto consola                     It's a consolation
   E nos da fe:                         And gives us faith:
   Que o coitadinho                     That the poor
   Do tiraninho                         little tyrant
   Nao bebe vinho,                      Doesn't drink wine
   Nem ate                              Nor even
   Cafe.                                Coffee.


  (BNP / E3, 92U-32r) (72)

Fernando Pessoa, Lisbon, 1920-1935

Fernando Pessoa, Lisbon, 1920-1935