I Stayed but my Dream Will Go


“I know I stayed

But my dream will go

Carried by the wind, by the clouds, by the wings.”

This excerpt, translated from the original Portuguese, is from Song of the Island Boys by the Cape Verdean poet Aguinaldo Fonseca (1922-2014) and the inspiration behind photographer this handmade book. Two thirds of the Cape Verdean population live outside the archipelago and this poem is about those who remain. Song of the Island Boys expresses the longing and dreams of departure of the Cape Verdeans who stayed. The book ‘I Know I Stayed but my Dream Will Go’ is dedicated to the many residents of the island of Santiago, Cape Verde who invited me into their homes and who graciously agreed to be photographed.

Published as a handmade edition of 18 copies only, book is printed on rough cotton/paper mix paper that are either a warm grey or a warm sand beige, inspired by the breeze block buildings all over the island of Santiago and by the sandy earth near the capital Praia.

© Alison McCauley