Yannis Ritsos-Poems, Volume III


This wind came by surprise

amid such motionless radiance,

in such a heat, sweat and brilliance.

They pulled the boats onto the shore;

The vacationers put on their shirts.

It was good. The idea of protection

underscored the fear of loss. Therefore

there was still something that could

be lost in this dry, golden summer.

The wind quietened down in the evening

and left behind the damp seaweed.


Kariotakis/Polydouri, the Tragic Love Story



And I lived in darkness. And I was darkness.

And a ray shown on me

Her joyous face as fresh as dew

and I as the parched asphodel

and the awakening youth shook me

how my bitter lips smiled. 

As if her eyes told me

I wasn’t a castaway anymore

and I was bent by tenderness

I who was turned into stone by grief

Neo-Hellene Poets, an Anthology of Modern Greek Poetry 1750-2018



The drama of your life and art,

so insignificant and yet so deeply thought,

spending your mind’s magnificence

in futile, laughable diversions,

playing with words all day and night,

testing how to put them next to one another,

how to mix them and add music to them,

how to enclose your dreams in verse.

Such pain and struggle, such an agony

to mould and turn your sorrow into harmony

and knead it using all your craftiness

just to return it to the people,

truly I don’t know of any other drama

more important than your pain

the pain that longs be imprisoned in a cage

its space the alphabet of man.

And after you have played with rhymes

and words like little children in their games

and after you’ve diminished all your hope

and lost yourself among your memories

as soon as the regrets appear

when the moment comes to bow or not

you lift your cross along with all your treasure

and to Golgotha you stumble to be crucified!


Γιώργος Θέμελης, Αποδημητικά

Βίκυ Παπαπροδρόμου: ό,τι πολύ αγάπησα (ποίηση, πεζογραφία & μουσική)

[Ενότητα Το δίχτυ των ψυχών, II]


Τα χείλη παραιτούνται απ’ τη φωνή,
Τους στυφούς φθόγγους.

Σωπαίνουν τα όργανα
Τα πνευστά και τα έγχορδα.

(Μέσα τους παρατείνεται η Μουσική,
Μια θάλασσα πολυφωνική πο’ ’χει σωπάσει.)

Μαζεύουν σωπασμένο αντίλαλο απ’ τ’ αδειανά κοχύλια,
Βαφή από μαραμένα ρόδα, διάφανη φεγγοβολή
Από το καθάριο αίμα τους, κι αλλάζουν
Τ’ άφωνα χείλη, γίνονται ασπασμοί

Στο πρόσωπό σου, στο σεπτό σου εικόνισμα.

Γίνονται ασπασμοί, γοργά φιλιά,
Αποδημητικά, αεικίνητα, σαν χελιδόνια.

Από τη συλλογή Το δίχτυ των ψυχών (1965) του Γιώργου Θέμελη

Οι ποιητές της Θεσσαλονίκης τον 20ό αιώνα και ως σήμερα (ανθολογία) / Γιώργος Θέμελης

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Tasos Livaditis – Poems, Volume II



When, finally, my discomfort intensified I shifted

            to my other foot

on Such Street, yet my feet have ruined me for years;

so I stand at the street light that they won’t have any

            way out anymore;

then, because of the crisis due to my sickness, I had

to pay attention to common things, but, in God’s

             name, get rid of all these pins;

yet the worst of all was the waiting room where

I, the traveller, often lost myself and as I made

beautiful plans in darkness I felt totally useless

in the light, like the coffin maker who looks around

          with worrying eyes

since each person dies at a different hour and Philip,

when he returned from Doomsday (it was perhaps true)

he brought back just a spittoon; I helped him with

            my savings and

the good news starts when you accept, from early

            in the morning, the upcoming night

until, quietly and methodically, using the craftiness

            of many eons,

I kneeled. And let the others stumble on the furniture.


Yannis Ritsos – Poems, Volume II


Don’t take too long — he said to her — don’t

take too long. The grapevine leaves turn reddish

in the fall. The trees kneel before their shade.

Don’t take too long, this wind blows me along.

I get used to the distance. Pride gets tired.

It’s not even pride. The dusk is fading away.

Two lines of lampposts light the seashore.

Useless lights, pale, how useless!

I like them at night. Don’t take too long.

One tiredness signals to the other.

Silent analogy. I prefer them.


Übermensch, poetry by Manolis Aligizakis


     Και σαν να ξεφυλίζαμε τις σελίδες πορνοπεριοδικού

φτάσαμε στο σπίτι του γελωτοποιού. Τον βρήκαμε

με την πλάτη του στον τοίχο να σκέφτεται πόσο

σύντομη είναι η ζωή και πως ο καθένας δικαιώνονταν

μετά το θάνατό του.

      Σε μια στιγμή παροξυσμού φτερά φυτρώσαν

στους ώμους του κι είπε, ‘ξέρω πώς να σας κάνω

να γελάσετε’, και δεν αμφιβάλαμε καθόλου αφού

κι ο βασιλιάς ποτέ δεν τον αμφισβήτησε, γι’αυτό

άλλωστε και τον πλήρωνε, εμείς όμως πάντοτε

αμφιβάλλαμε για το βασιλιά και τους λεκέδες

στο παντελόνι μας που μαρτυρούσαν απιστία, ώσπου

τελικά σηκώθηκε ο Υπεράνθρωπος και χαμογελώντας

αγκάλιασε το γελωτοποιό κι είπε, ‘αδερφέ μου, εσύ είσαι

ο εκλεκτός μου.’


As though going through the pages of a porno-magazine

we arrived at the house of the jester. With his back against

the wall he contemplated on how short life was and how

everyone was justified right after their death.

In a moment of paroxysm he grew wings and said,

‘I know how to make you laugh’, something we never

doubted. After all the king never doubted his creativity,

for this he hired him, however we always doubted

the king and the stains on our pants were witnesses

of infidelity, until finally He stood up, the Übermensch

and smiling at the jester He hugged him saying:

‘my brother, you are my chosen one.’


Wheat Ears-Selected Poems


Wished to write you a letter

to say I loved you

but soon I recalled

people don’t write letters anymore

grabbed the mobile

and texted that

I wanted to see

your playful eyes

turning on your phone

you appeared on the screen

with your laughing eyes

and you laughed, and laughed

and said that I was

an old school student

as I sent a kiss to you

from other side of the planet


Yannis Ritsos – Poems, Selected Books


Η Ελένη/Helen

Τα άλλα, σα να μην ήταν τίποτα — χάθηκαν. Άργος, Αθήνα, Σπάρτη,
Κόρινθος, Θήβα, Σικυών, — σκιές ονομάτων· τα μιλάω· ηχούν σαν βουλιαγμένα
μες στο ασυντέλεστο. Κάποιο χαμένο ευγενικό σκυλί στέκει
μπροστά στην προθήκη ενός φτηνού γαλατάδικου. Μια νέα περαστική το κοιτάζει·
αυτό δεν αποκρίνεται· η σκιά του απλώνεται στο πεζοδρόμιο μεγάλη.
Δεν έμαθα ποτέ μου το γιατί. Κι ούτε υπάρχει θαρρώ. Μένει μονάχα
αυτή η εξευτελιστική, εξαναγκασμένη (από ποιόν;) επιδοκιμασία
καθώς γνέφουμε «ναι» με το κεφάλι, σα να χαιρετούμε κάποιον
με απίστευτη δουλοφροσύνη, ενώ κανείς δεν περνάει, κανείς δεν είναι.

The other things are lost as if they never existed Argos Athens


Corinth Thebes Sykion – shadows of names I pronounce and they

            echo as if they are sunken

in the incomplete A stray well-bred little dog stands

before the window of a poor dairy A young woman passing by

            looks at it

it doesn’t respond its shadow is spread on the sidewalk


I never learned the reason I doubt it truly exists There remains

only that humiliating compulsive (from whom?) approval

like when we nod yes as if we greet someone

with incredible servitude although nobody goes by

            nobody is there