Saudade

About a week ago our Editor and I were discussing a piece he wrote for the site (Celery City) and I explained that it was probably my favorite because it provoked suadade.  I used the word because there really isn’t a word in the English language that’s synonymous.  In case you don’t know what it means (from wiki)-

Saudade was once described as “the love that remains” after someone is gone. Saudade is the recollection of feelings, experiences, places, or events that once brought excitement, pleasure, well-being, which now triggers the senses and makes one live again. It can be described as an emptiness, like someone (e.g., one’s children, parents, sibling, grandparents, friends, pets) or something (e.g., places, things one used to do in childhood, or other activities performed in the past) that should be there in a particular moment is missing, and the individual feels this absence. It brings sad and happy feelings altogether, sadness for missing and happiness for having experienced the feeling.

Portugal is a country whose culture and people are close to saudade and that’s no where more apparent or more beautiful than in Fado. One of my favorite memories is of going to a Fado house in Lisbon and hearing “Uma Casa Portuguesa” by a well know Fado singer, live. The song, released in 1953 and originally sung by Amalia Rodrigues, has become an anthem of sorts – at least for me.  I’ll leave it here for you to enjoy for the first or millionth time.

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