Portuguese poet Manuel Alegre has received the Literary Life Award from the Portuguese Writers Association, Portuguese public television RTP reported.

“My disturbance is and always has been Portugal,” he said during the award ceremony, on April 25, the day the country celebrates the revolution of 1974, which put an end to dictatorship. Mr Alegre fought against the old regime and was arrested for it.

“I lived, I wrote and I sang my time as I knew how and as I could. Always with […] the feeling that something remained to be written, done or even lived,” he said, as broadcasted by RTP.

The award acknowledges the writer’s 50-year long career. A Praça da Canção was his first book, published in 1965, and “became one of the symbols of the Portuguese people’s fight against Salazar’s and Caetano’s dictatorship,” notes the Portuguese Society of Authors (SPA, in the Portuguese acronym), which will also attribute an award to Mr Alegre this year.

SPA’s Career Award will be delivered to the author on May 20. As the society recalls, Mr Alegre was also a legislator for many years and for twice he ran for President of the country. “He is one of the most active personalities in Portuguese cultural and political life,” with several books awarded in Portugal and overseas, SPA adds.