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Κώστας Καρυωτάκης

Τελευταία ανανέωση

24 Ιουν 2002



Κεντρική Σελίδα


Αρχική Σελίδα Καρυωτάκης





Page design & Layout



They betrayed virtue and the last came first.
With money the heart is taken and the friend is appraised.
If once it was shimmering in the mind, in the eyes, in everything,
life is already dark and unfeasible like a legend,
it's bitterness on the lip.

Deep Night. With a spirit full of rage I pushed the bed.
I opened the cobwebby rooms. No
hope. From the window, I saw the shadow
of the last passer-by. And I shouted in the peacefulness:

The awful word with fire was written in the sky.
Trees are pointing at it, stars are looking it,
the houses have it for a sign and they are graves,
even the dogs must have heard it and are howling
Men are not listening


Translation by Peter J. King and Andrea Christofidou -- In

They turn the key in the door, take out
their old, well-hidden letters,
read them quietly, then drag
their feet a final time.

Their life has been a tragedy, they say.
God! people's frightful laughter,
and the tears, the sweat, nostalgia
of the skies, the landscape's solitude.

They stand there by the window, gazing at
the trees, the children, all of nature,
at the marble-workers hammering away,
the sun that wants to set forever.

It's over. Here's the note --
appropriately short, profound, and simple,
full of indifference and forgiveness
for whoever's going to weep and read it.

They look in the mirror, look at the time,
ask if it's madness maybe, a mistake.
"It's over now" they murmur;
deep down, of course, they're going to put it off.


Translation by Peter J. King and Andrea Christofidou -- In

I stare at the ceiling's plasterwork.
I'm drawn into the dance of the meanders.
My happiness, I'm thinking, would
lie in height.

Symbols of the higher life:
unchanging, transubstantiated roses;
a white acanthus border round a
horn of plenty.

(Humble, unpretentious craft,
how sluggishly I learn your lesson!)
Bas-relief dream, I'll come to you

Horizons will have smothered me.
In every climate, every latitude,
the struggle for one's bread and salt,
the love-affairs, the boredom.

Ah! now I ought to wear
that lovely plaster garland.
So, with the ceiling as my frame,
I'll be adored.