The city goes on sleeping/awake

by Armando Freitas Filho

The city goes on sleeping/awake
with the lights on
its street-lights, fountains, statues
with all its circuits working
and the sea.
The metro doesn't move a metre.
Only the buses sleepwalk
slow, circular
with no need of direction:
they know their way by heart
they don't even look like the buses that, by day,
run flattened, intersected and in close-up
in the paintings of Collares.

The literal translation of this poem was made by Francisco Vilhena

The final translated version of the poem is by The Poetry Translation Workshop


Like all five of the poems by Armando Freitas Filho that we translated in our first workshop on his poems, this was a delight to work on. We all loved the delicate picture of a city at night 'sleeping/awake' that his poem creates.


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