Portuguese writer Jose Luis Peixoto attend literacy festival in Lahore



LAHORE: Portuguese novelist and poet Jose Luis Peixoto said he wrote his book, You Died on Me, six months after his father’s death when he was dealing with the aftermath of his death.

“This is a book about mourning and loss. There is a taboo about this word, death, which is called morte in Portuguese, more meaningful for me than the English translation. People get scared of the loss and mourning but mourning is not without love because it’s love that gives value to loss. I would say that I have written a book about love,” he said in a session at the Lahore Literary Festival moderated by Pakistani English poet Ilona Yusuf at the Alhamra Art Centre on Sunday.

Peixoto said humans were not fully programmed to understand absolutely. “We are not made absolute, we can’t conceive absolute”. He said when someone passes away, you realise that you would never have that person with you again.

“You realise that time does not go back and that you will never meet or spend time with him or that person will never call you again. The confrontation with death gives voice to mourning, which, in a certain way, is coming to terms with this idea, which is unthinkable in our daily lives. Our first impulse is to find a solution to it. Then we realise that we don’t have a solution and mourning is like making sense of that. We find ways of making that loss a part of logic again.”

After participating in the Lahore Literary Festival held from 23rd to 25th February, the acclaimed Portuguese writer José Luis Peixoto will be in Islamabad between Monday 26th till Wednesday 28th.

 In Islamabad, Monday 26th at the Pakistan Academy of Letters, the author will engage with Pakistanis writers, journalists, and intellectuals.

 The next day José Luis Peixoto will interact with audiences of students and professors from Islamabad Universities, NUST – National University of Science and Technology on Tuesday 27th, and NUML – National University of Modern Languages on Wednesday 28th.