Friday, November 6, 2015


M I L T O S    S A C H T O U R I S

Wind Blew

Wind blew

flowers from another world

like a church

with black stigmata of evil

here and there

burning the skin red

in sleep

her hair

smelled tragically



From a high mountain I saw the sea

in its arms I saw

birds living and dying

and I shone high like a star

with tears and with nails

and around me fish and ladders

ladders they could climb up to push out

my heart

ladders I could climb down

to shred the heart of the sea

For Spring

The sun is green

the trees are burning

awaiting the swallows

our iron swallows' nests

no longer fool us with their flowers

they cost us our arms and legs

now our arms and legs are hanging

from the trees

The Poet's Head

I cut off my head

I put it on a plate

and took it to my doctor

— There's nothing wrong, he said,

it's just overheated

throw it in the river and we'll see

I threw it in the river with the frogs

and it raised a dreadful racket

it started shrieking and howling

all kinds of strange songs

I picked it up and put it back on my neck

and roamed the streets in a rage

with a poet's green hexagonometric head 


Miltos Sachtouris
translated from the Greek by
Karen Emmerich
Archipelago books, 2006


vazambam (Vassilis Zambaras) said...

Nice selection taken from the work of a fine, Greek poet who's still rather unknown in the English-speaking world; if I'm not mistaken, his first book to be translated into English was a 40-page selection With Face to the Wall, translated by Kimon Friar and published in 1968 by the Charioteer Press. Long overshadowed by many poets of his generation, his work is now being rediscovered by many younger Greek poets and readers. It's about time, I should say.

Bob Arnold / Longhouse said...

. . .and, Vassilis, at least one Vermonter is also a new reader in America!

I will try to keep my head.

Very good to hear from another fine Greek poet (yourself)
in the sunshine.

all's well, Bob