Milton Nascimento: Song of America

The students of Virginia Tech have resumed classes. It seems to be the only thinkable thing to do after last week; there are educations to complete and lives to get on with. The mourning, however, doesn’t end with the memorial ceremonies which are being sadly conducted in public and private, one by one.

Since I can think of no better way to honor the lives lost, I’ll post this sweet, sad song by Brazil’s inimitable Milton Nascimento:

Canção Da América

The lyrics:

Amigo é coisa para se guardar

Debaixo de 7 chaves,

Dentro do coração,

assim falava a canção que na América ouvi,

mas quem cantava chorou ao ver o seu amigo partir,

mas quem ficou, no pensamento vou,

o seu canto que o outro lembrou

E quem vou no pensamento ficou,

uma lembrança que o outro cantou.

Amigo é coisa para se guardar

No lado esquerdo do peito,

mesmo que o tempo e a distância digam não,

mesmo esquecendo a canção.

O que importa é ouvir a voz que vem do coração.

Seja o que vier,

venha o que vier

Qualquer dia amigo eu volto pra te encontrar

Qualquer dia amigo, a gente vai se encontrar


A friend is a thing to guard

behind 7 locks

in your heart–

so says the song I heard in America

but the one who sang cried, seeing a friend go away,

but who stayed, going in thought

his song that someone remembered

and who went, stayed in thoughts–

a remembrance of what someone else sang.

A friend is a thing to guard

in the left side of your breast

even if time and distance say no,

even if you forget the song.

What matters is to hear the voice that comes from the heart.

Be what may,

come what may–

Someday, friend, I’ll return to find you

Someday, friend, we’ll come together

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