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Ponta de Areia
Wayne Shorter Lyrics


Jump to: Overall Meaning ↴  Line by Line Meaning ↴

Ponta de areia, ponto final
Da Bahia à Minas, estrada natural
Que ligava Minas ao porto, ao mar
Caminho do ferro mandaram arrancar
Velho maquinista com seu boné
Lembra o povo alegre que vinha cortejar
Maria Fumaça, não canta mais
Para moças, flores, janelas e quintais
Na praça vazia, um grito um ai
Casas esquecidas, viúvas nos portais

Overall Meaning

The lyrics to Wayne Shorter's song "Ponta de Areia" speak of the end of an era and the fading of a time long gone. The first line, "Ponta de areia, ponto final," refers to a specific point on the coast of Brazil, where the land meets the sea. It is said that this was the final destination for a natural road that connected the states of Bahia and Minas Gerais, which was once used as a means of transportation for mining goods. The second line, "Da Bahia à Minas, estrada natural," acknowledges the historical significance of this natural road in connecting the two regions.


However, as time passed and technology advanced, the natural road became obsolete, as reflected in the lyrics "Que ligava Minas ao porto, ao mar / Caminho do ferro mandaram arrancar" ("That connected Minas to the port and the sea / The railroad path they had to take away"). The song then speaks of a "velho maquinista" ("old train driver") who remembers the happy people who used to travel the railway to see their loved ones. But now, there is no more "Maria Fumaça" (a type of train) singing for the girls, flowers, windows, and backyards. All that's left are "Casas esquecidas, viúvas nos portais" ("Forgotten houses, widows on the doorsteps") and an empty square with only the sound of cries and pain.


Overall, the lyrics of "Ponta de Areia" convey a sense of nostalgia for a simpler time, but also acknowledge the inevitability of progress and change. It speaks to the universal theme of time marching on and leaving behind what was once cherished.


Line by Line Meaning

Ponta de areia, ponto final
Starting point in Bahia, which is now the end.


Da Bahia à Minas, estrada natural
Natural route connecting Bahia and Minas.


Que ligava Minas ao porto, ao mar
The link between Minas and the port, to the sea.


Caminho do ferro mandaram arrancar
The railway was uprooted.


Velho maquinista com seu boné
The old train operator in his cap.


Lembra o povo alegre que vinha cortejar
Reminding the happy people who came to court.


Maria Fumaça, não canta mais
The steam engine no longer sings.


Para moças, flores, janelas e quintais
For girls, flowers, windows, and yards.


Na praça vazia, um grito um ai
In the empty square, there's a cry.


Casas esquecidas, viúvas nos portais
Forgotten houses, widows by the gates.




Lyrics © Tratore, Sony/ATV Music Publishing LLC
Written by: Fernando Brant, Milton Silva Campos Nascimento

Lyrics Licensed & Provided by LyricFind
To comment on or correct specific content, highlight it

Most interesting comment from YouTube:

Leo F

I took a shot at translating this song. "Ponta de Areia" (or "Sandy Peninsula") is a small beach in the Brazilian Atlantic coast. It is located in Bahia state, and used to be the last station of an old railroad built in the late 1800s connecting Bahia to Minas Gerais (or just "Minas"), a very productive but landlockced state in the heart of the Brazilian territory. Minas Gerais is also the birthplace of both Milton Nascimento and Fernando Brant, the composers of the son. The railroad and its locomotives (generally known in Brazil as Maria Fumaça, "Smokey Mary") were deactivated in 1966, so I think of the song as a nostalgic account of a lost time, a simpler time, as this seems to be the theme of many songs by Nascimento and Brant.

Ponta de Areia
Final point
From Bahia to Minas, natural path
Minas' link to the port and sea
The iron rail was ripped off
The old driver with his cap
Recalls the joyful people who came to cherish
Smokey Mary sings no more
To ladies, flowers, porches and yards
In the empty square, a scream of pain
Forgotten houses, widows in the balconies

Hope those of you who don't speak Portuguese enjoy this. If you're not familiar with the composers' other works, I'd strongly recommend checking out the albums Clube da Esquina and Minas - the latter is where Ponta de Areia was originally released, in an equally beautiful recording. Cheers.



All comments from YouTube:

Leo F

I took a shot at translating this song. "Ponta de Areia" (or "Sandy Peninsula") is a small beach in the Brazilian Atlantic coast. It is located in Bahia state, and used to be the last station of an old railroad built in the late 1800s connecting Bahia to Minas Gerais (or just "Minas"), a very productive but landlockced state in the heart of the Brazilian territory. Minas Gerais is also the birthplace of both Milton Nascimento and Fernando Brant, the composers of the son. The railroad and its locomotives (generally known in Brazil as Maria Fumaça, "Smokey Mary") were deactivated in 1966, so I think of the song as a nostalgic account of a lost time, a simpler time, as this seems to be the theme of many songs by Nascimento and Brant.

Ponta de Areia
Final point
From Bahia to Minas, natural path
Minas' link to the port and sea
The iron rail was ripped off
The old driver with his cap
Recalls the joyful people who came to cherish
Smokey Mary sings no more
To ladies, flowers, porches and yards
In the empty square, a scream of pain
Forgotten houses, widows in the balconies

Hope those of you who don't speak Portuguese enjoy this. If you're not familiar with the composers' other works, I'd strongly recommend checking out the albums Clube da Esquina and Minas - the latter is where Ponta de Areia was originally released, in an equally beautiful recording. Cheers.

vic841004

lovely.

Jake J

Thanks, you're contributing to me enjoying this album even more. And I bought it when it came out! Cheers

Pat Baracco

Thank you, Leo! Fantastic what you did.

Frederico Zgur

Boa! ;)

reah!

Thank you! Read a translation of this years ago and thought it was a bout slavery or some shit, assuming your lyrics are correct Portuguese translation, the person who did that translation was probably completely full of shit

13 More Replies...

DJ TONE

I first heard this song done by Earth, Wind & Fire as an interlude on their “All ‘N All” album. This version is amazing! Beautiful!! Rest In Peace Mr. Shorter..🎷🙏🏾🕊️✨✨✨

Paula Schwartz

We buried my uncle with this
My dad cried his saxophone out that day
Only time I felt the pain in his breath
Majestic

Renda Victoria

❤❤❤❤❤ praying for comfort for you and your family

opossumtrax9

One of the most beautiful pieces of music I have ever heard in my life.

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