Saudade (European Portuguese: [sɐwˈðaðɨ], Brazilian Portuguese: [sawˈdadʒi], Galician: [sawˈðaðe]; plural saudades) is a unique Galician-Portuguese word that has no immediate translation in English. Saudade describes a deep emotional state of nostalgic longing for an absent something or someone that one loves. It often carries a repressed knowledge that the object of longing might never return. It’s related to the feelings of longing, yearning.
This is an emotional state I find myself in again and again. I feel it whenever I pick up a book from the Harry Potter or Lord of the Rings trilogies. As much as I love to read them, they always leave me sad when I finish. There really is nothing more wonderful than the first time you experience a truly epic work like these. That sadness of knowing that you will never feel that new discovery with each book. I think it is this reason, why I can not wait to share these books with my children, especially the boys. I know that Elizabeth, my beautiful Ravenclaw, has read and loved the Harry Potter books and I’m pretty sure she’s read the Lord of the Rings trilogy.
When I pick up one of the books, I am always reminded of things I was experiencing when I first read it. My memories of that time, permanently linked with my memories of the reading of that particular book. The good and the bad. I think that is why I find myself reading through these series year after year.
Saudade, it is a strange and wonderful thing to experience.