The Feeling of a Westerner
Translated from the Portuguese by Richard Zenith
Prefaced by Anna M. Klobucka
The Feeling of a Westerner by Cesário Verde (1855-1886) is perhaps the most extraordinary nineteenth-century poem written in Portuguese. It chronicles the poet’s panoramic perception of the city of Lisbon during a long stroll that occupies him from one late afternoon to the early morning hours of the following day. As he surveys Lisbon’s bustling city life on the verge of modernity, he also reviews Portugal’s history and imagines its future in terms at once utopian and dystopian. Verde is considered the most significant precursor of the Modernist generation of Portuguese poets, including the great Fernando Pessoa, whose fascination with Verde is attested to by the many mentions of his name throughout Pessoa’s poetry and prose. This bilingual edition, with the English translation by Richard Zenith, includes also an introductory essay by Anna M. Klobucka.