The feeling of longing for someone that you love and is lost. A “vague and constant desire for something that does not and probably cannot exist.”
Saudade (Portuguese) 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 will never return. It’s related to the feelings of longing, yearning.
What makes this word so powerful is how it is able to encompass a whole list of feelings and desires into one word. Were we, in English, would have to explain ones deep longing and desire for a lost love or for a love that never was or that never will be, is a whole string of words, tinged with what the lover is longing for and missing and what the lover ultimately feels by realizing their object of so much affection neither was or will be. In one word, saudade explains it all.
January 30th is Brazil’s Day of Saudade.
I’m quite grateful that there’s some place in this world that appreciates us lost souls in the world of love.