A Phoenix Reborn


Mia fora kai enan kero…
Once upon a time, not too long ago,
for four plus centuries,
successions of Ottoman Sultans
reigned down like gloomy clouds,
blocking sunlight from Grecian skies.
Terror filled her once-free air:
her rocks ached, her seas wept, her birds shrilled
her flowers withered, her people suffered—

but no longer.
Greece like a Phoenix reborn, 1821:
Freedom’s palikaria
men and women,
their names like banners unfurled:
Androutsos, Bouboulina,
Byron, Diakos, Gregorios the 5th,
Ipsilantis, Kanaris, Keraïskakis,
Kolokotronis, Makrygiannis,
Mavrogenous, Miaoulis,
Odysseas, Papaflessas…
Names but a few—

they revived democracy’s Greek spirit,
banishing brutal barbarians
from most Grecian lands.
Sunlight shone bright through her clear blue skies—
her rocks smiled, her seas sparkled, her birds sang,
her flowers blossomed, and her people sang:
Hïere  O, hïere Eleftheria!

Sofia Kontogeorge Kostos

Mia fora kai enan kero. (Greek)  Once upon a time.

From the last line of the Greek National Anthem, by poet Dionysios Solonos:
“Hïere  O, hïere Eleftheria!”
(Greek)  “Hale O, hale Freedom!”

The version of this poem in Greek


  1. Dear Sofia,

    Your poem beautifully reflects the Greek spirit with such well chosen words to express the contrast between the terror and sunlight years.

    A pleasure to read, Many thanks.

    Kind regards, Gabrielle.

  2. I very much appreciate your comments. If you ever come to NYC, please let me know. I will explain … /Sofia

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