Another Shore

Another Shore

There is a time when we need to abandon the used clothes which already have the shape of our body and forget the paths that have always led us to the same places.

It is a time of crossing: and, if we cannot make it, we will have been forever on the margins of ourselves.
Fernando Teixeira de Andrade.

The day was warm, the sun was at the perfect position. From time to time there was a light, gentle breeze of fresh air. For a moment, in a brief lapse of time, I felt that there was something more; something beyond the mediocre and petty life I led. Not that it was bad, but a little anguish, one of those things that bothers the chest due to its constancy, made me think about the mysteries of life!
There had to be something more.

On another day, when the sun was no longer up and the night was gray, a hailstorm fell, as if closing a cycle. Inside me, I stubbornly had the courage to take the canoe I had been working on for a long time, and do what I wanted…

To do what had been prompting me for a long time.

It was cold and everyone in the house was asleep. I thought it was time, the moment to go. I no longer cared what they thought or said, or even how selfish it seemed.

It was a matter of life and death.

I even thought I was sick, sick in the soul.

What is this pain that neither medicine nor doctors can fix?!

What is this invisible force that punishes and confronts me?

I didn’t think of anything else. I dragged my canoe down to the river without even feeling the rain.

I left empty, naked, willingly. I didn’t take any supplies, nor did I change my clothes. I really thought I might be crazy. That’s what I did, and I can’t explain the feeling when I abandoned everything I thought I was…

I looked at the little house, the yard, the grass from afar. I remembered the warm day and the sun, in its unpretentious goodness, on that day when I had the lapse…

I was startled to see from afar that someone was at the door and seemed to realize that I was gone…

My heart tightened, but that was it. I was no longer part of it. I had never felt so whole, as if, passing from the riverbank, I passed from the shores of myself. Who but me was talking to me?

I was not mad, as I had suspected. I was able to go to the bottom of my life and begin an inner transformation. I experienced freedom, the new as a promise of life.

In the solitude of the river, in its “offensive” amplitude, I had finally found myself. Like a curtain that opens on the stage of life, like a hidden path that suddenly emerges. I was gone forever. I opened my way, I discovered new territories and other possibilities.

A lot of time passed, but it didn’t make any difference. I felt connected to everything and everyone, but in a different way.

I knew that life in my house wouldn’t be the same anymore. I could live there and at the same time be on the other shore.

[1] ANDRADE, Fernando Teixeira. Fear: the greatest giant of the soul. Available at

O medo: o maior gigante da alma (Fernando Teixeira de Andrade) – Imprimir este texto – Crónicas – Luso-Poemas

Accessed on February 5, 2024. Note: Text inspired by Guimarães Rosa’s short story “The Third Bank of the River”

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Article info

Date: June 6, 2024
Author: Group of LOGON authors (Brazil)
Photo: by jplenio from pixabay CCO

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