Pedra Filosofal

One of the benefits of cleaning out an old room is finding the numerous things you sort-of-knew-you-had-but-had-forgotten-about. I opened the box on my night stand (which doesn’t really serve as a night stand since it’s across the room from my bed, but it’s night stand height) and found a plethora of old journals, notebooks, letters, photos and miscellaneous objects. I’m thinking about making a video blog about all the old stories and Potter-memorabilia (circa 1999-2000) I found. The most striking thing I found was a single piece of notebook paper with a long poem scribbled down on it in my eleven year old hand writing. I vaguely remember coming across this poem and feeling the need to copy it down and keep it, but I can’t remember exactly when or why. Something about it still strikes me. It’s sort of a summary of my entire life, including unintentional Potter allusions. It’s long, so don’t feel obligated to read it.

Pedra Filosofal

by Antonio Gedeao (translated from Portuguese)

They don’t know that dreams

are a constant part of life

as concrete and as real as

any other possible thing,

as this grey stone

on which I sit and rest,

as this calm brook

gently stirring,

as these tall pine trees

waving in green and in gold,

as these birds that cry

intoxicated with blue.

They don’t know that dreams

are wine, and foam, they’re leaven,

tiny animal, smart and eager,

its pointed muzzle

fussing through

in a perpetual move.

They don’t know that dreams

are canvas, and colour, a brush,

base, column, capital,

lancet arch, stained glass,

cathedral pinnacle,

counterpoint, symphony

a Greek mask, and magic

the alchemist’s retort,

map of the distant world,

a compass, the Infante century caravel,

they’re Cape of Boa Esperança,

gold, cinnamon, ivory,

swordsman’s foil,

theatre wings, dancing step,

Columbine and Harlequin,

the flying passarola,

lightning rod, locomotive,

a ship of festive prow,

blast-furnace, generator,

atom’s fusion, radar,

ultrasound, television,

rocket landing

on the surface of the moon.

They neither know, nor dream,

that dreams command life.

That whenever a man dreams

the world bounces, advances,

as if it were a coloured ball

held by the hands of a child


One response to “Pedra Filosofal

  1. I know what that’s like. I think I’m going to have a small room just for memories in the future, because I can’t ever bring myself to get rid of something that has an event or emotion connected to it.

    And yeah, it’s a good poem. Anything that speaks of dreams in that way I’m automatically going to like.

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