Novas Poéticas de Resistência: o século XXI em Portugal


Teresa Fonseca

When words are butterflies sucking mineral salts out of the bones…

sometimes their fruits are waves of flapping wings


sometimes they are harvested

by the life

of the mouth

with a strong beat


when the mouth is an efficient filter beak

words break free from the lethal cycle

they eat and shit

now the nourishing soup

now the venous liquid

will become


the words


the alarm explodes

the undertakers of the words are on their way

the words

are death found

and know there is no need to haste for in the dignity of the hunt

they will slowly become necrophagous like vultures


they are big wasps clashing against the transparent glass

and we on the other side

gasping for breath

with the deer’s protection

on the head

and the words droning like wasps


and entering our nose and mouth and hairs and the pores of the skin

in a rhizome-like drone

they eat us

they shit us

the words

and we on the other side of the glass














Cantiga d'amigo (*)

In the place of the spring there remains the red flow broken by the stag’s fluidity

she bawls and bolts and flies off and her friend stays still, sprawling. And well he might!

the wet sand dreams of a blooming hazelnut-tree in its

fall body

and the rap of repetition.


the naked boat  moors once and again and again

dirty with sludge she does not move. blurred.

and her jinxed mother’s memory of the dance now rotten

and her girl friends freshly fated by fairies are angels that anger the house and the

 husbands embark on other tides

in swelling sails

and the rap of repetition.


instead of the birdie the black- veiled crow gossip with fishy eyes of splintered glass

and the false friend arrives flaunting himself with deflated sails.

and she onlyhot only hot lonely and hot

no albas no salvos no waltzes


(*) TN: (“A friend’s song”) - a medieval Galician-Portuguese female-voiced troubadour  love poem

Teresa Fonseca (b. 1969, Coimbra) got her degree in 1994 at the University of Coimbra and has taught Portuguese and English in preparatory and secondary schools since 1994. She has been a member of the Editorial Board of Oficina de Poesia since 2006. She has conducted creative writing workshops in schools and has participated in a number of public poetry readings.