But do we really live? To live without knowing what life is - is that living?

Fernando Pessoa

Fernando Pessoa

Profession: Author
Nationality: Portuguese

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What grieves me is that my best is no good, and that another whom I dream of, if he existed, would have done it better.

Death guides us, death seeks us out, death accompanies us. All we have is Death, all we want is Death, Death is all we want to want.

Everything belongs to others except my regret that it doesn't belong to me.

Our problem isn't that we're individualists. It's that our individualism is static rather than dynamic. We value what we think rather than what we do. We forget that we haven't done, or been, what we thought; that the first function of life is action, just as the first property of things is motion.

Only poets and philosophers see the world as it really is, for only to them is it given to live without illusions. To see clearly is to not act.

I don't even suffer. My disdain for everything is so complete that I even disdain myself. The contempt I have for the sufferings of others I also have for my own. And so all my suffering is crushed under the foot of my disdain.

I sleep on my elbows propped painfully on the railing and feel a great promise in knowing nothing.

I'm beginning to know myself.
 I don't exist. I'm the space between what 
I'd like to be and what others
 made of me. Just let me be at ease and
 all by myself in my room.

All pleasure is a vice because seeking pleasure is what everyone does in life, and the worst vice of all is to do what everyone else does.

To be published = the socialization of the self. What a base necessity!

That is my morality or my metaphysics or me myself: a passer-by in everything, even my own soul. I belong to nothing, I desire nothing, I am nothing except an abstract centre of impersonal sensations, a sentient mirror fallen from the wall but still turned to reflect the diversity of the world.

THIRD WATCHER Let her speak. Don't interrupt. She knows words that mermaids taught her...I'm falling asleep in order to hear her...Go on, sister, go on...My heart aches because I wasn't you when you dreamed at the seashore...

The trivialities natural to life, the insignificancies of the normal and vulgar, lie like a layer of dust, tracing a blurred, grotesque line beneath the squalor and meanness of my human existence.

My dreams are a stupid shelter, like an umbrella against lightning.