Escape

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Translation Manolis Aligizakis

   He sat on the stool by the front yard, his hands so clumsy, they had
already overtaken us “someday they will demolish the house”, he says
to me, and they’ll discover it”
and every so often at the far end of the room someone wrapped around
him a bed-sheet, it was the time he escaped, until the bed-sheet fell
empty on the floor and we had a friend forever,
in the stations, the immigrants were lined and waited hiding inside
their overcoats the voyage like a dog on its death bed

The Nails

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Tasos Livaditis-Selected Poems
Translated by Manolis Aligizakis

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Sometimes, that special hour, I think of narrating all the details:
how, for example, this incurable disease started on the opposite wall
or about that woman in the park, whose body was nailed on the bench,
and I say this without exaggeration, the nails protruded from her cloths
like small buttons, while her purse with her identity card floated down
the creek, that we couldn’t find out anything about her, and as I
went up to the loft they allotted to me for the night, I discovered they
had moved and only hay was left behind, because they always had
the fear of comedown, and there were moments when everyone
anticipated the inescapable and when the night fell serenely, they
quietened down, because the others weren’t going back and forth
in the hallway to look behind the door at the far end.
For this I’ve stayed on the sidelines, with the hope of rediscovering
that lost soul.

Tasos Livaditis-Selected Poems
Translated by Manolis Aligizakis

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ΤΑ ΚΑΡΦΙΑ

Σκέφτομαι, κάποτε, σέ μιά ιδιαίτερη ώρα, νά διηγηθώ όλες τίς
λεπτομέρειες, πώς, λόγου χάρη, άρχισε αυτή η αθεράπευτη αρρώ-
στια στόν απέναντι τοίχο ή γιά εκείνη τή γυναίκα στό πάρκο, πού
ήταν ολόκληρη καρφωμένη πάνω στό παγκάκι, καί λέω καρφωμένη
χωρίς ίχνος υπερβολής, τά καρφιά εξείχαν σάν μικρά κουμπιά πάνω
απ’ τά ρούχα της, ενώ η τσάντα μέ την ταυτότητά της κυλούσε
μές στό ρυάκι, γιά νά μήν ξέρουμε τίποτα γι αυτήν, κι όπως ανέ-
βηκα στή σοφίτα πού μού `χαν παραχωρήσει γιά τή νύχτα, είδα
πώς είχαν μετακομίσει, καί δέν έμενε παρά λίγο άχυρο, επειδή
είχαν πάντα τό φόβο τού ξεπεσμού, κι ήταν στιγμές πού όλοι περί-
μεναν τό αναπόφευκτο, κι όταν νύχτωνε ήρεμα, ησύχαζαν, γιατί
εκείνοι δέν πηγαινοέρχονταν στό διάδρομο, νά δούν ακριβώς πίσω
απ’ τήν πόρτα τού βάθους.
Γι’ αυτό κι εγώ κρατιέμαι παράμερα, μέ τήν ελπίδα να ξαναβρώ
εκείνη τή χαμένη ψυχή.

Τάσος Λειβαδίτης-Εκλεγμένα Ποιήματα
Μετάφραση Μανώλη Αλυγιζάκη

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The Visitor’s Letter

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by Tasos Livaditis
translated by Manolis Aligizakis

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Suddenly on an autumn day he left, on the table he left a letter
“don’t send me away” it read and spoke of a deep inhabitable
emotion; in the house all the lights were turned on that I wouldn’t
understand, that perhaps, he had never come, while next to the letter
he had left the mystery of his death, already covered by cobwebs,
“how you found me?” he says to me, “I never existed”, “for this”
I said and it was as if we were born and raised in a carriage that run
into the shivering roads,
yet I still couldn’t fight against this facial of the house,
its walls, ravaged, dived deeper than my blood in the darkness
of the night.

Tasos Livaditis-Selected Poems
Translated by Manolis Aligizakis

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ΤΟ ΓΡΑΜΜΑ ΤΟΥ ΕΠΙΣΚΕΠΤΗ

Έφυγε ξαφνικά μιά μέρα τού φθινοπώρου, πάνω στό τραπέζι
είχε αφήσει ένα γράμμα, “μή μέ διώξεις” έγραφε, καί μιλούσε γιά
ένα μακρύ ακατοίκητο προαίσθημα, τά φώτα ήταν όλα αναμμένα
στό σπιτι, γιά νά μήν καταλάβω πώς, ίσως, δέν είχε έρθει ποτέ,
ενώ πλάι στό γράμμα είχε ακουμπήσει τό μυστήριο τού θανάτου
του, πού οι αράχνες τό `χαν κιόλας σκεπάσει, “πώς μέ βρήκες, μού
λέει, εγώ δέν υπήρξα”, “γι’ αυτό” τού λέω, κι ήταν σάν νά `χαμε
γεννηθεί καί μεγαλώσει σ’ ένα αμάξι, πού έτρεχε μές στό ανατρί-
χιασμα τών δρόμων,
μά ούτε καί μπορούσα νά παλέψω μ’ αυτήν τήν προσοψη, τού
σπιτιού, πού οι τοίχοι του φαγωμένοι κατέβαιναν βαθύτερα απ’ τό
αίμα μου, μές στό σκοτάδι τής νύχτας.

Τάσος Λειβαδίτης-Εκλεγμένα Ποιήματα/Tasos Livaditis-Selected Poems
Μετάφραση Μανώλη Αλυγιζάκη/Translated by Manolis Aligizakis
www.libroslibertad.ca

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The Bride of Abydos

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by Lord Byron
translated by I. Garivaldis

Original

Know ye the land of the cedar and vine?
Where the flowers ever blossom, the beams ever shine,
Where the light wings of Zephyr, oppressed with perfume,
Wax faint o’er the gardens of Gul in her bloom;
Where the citron and olive are fairest of fruit,
And the voice of the nightingale never is mute;

The Third Man

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translation by Manolis Aligizakis

____Then the other one came, he carried an old ravished valise,
in which he hid all the ghosts of his life, that they never needed
chase after him,
____we were in the same stuffy room and the large animal sawn
on the carpet was already biting our knees,
____“mother”, I asked at some-time, “where can we find some water for
my horse?”, “but I don’t see any horse”, “you too, mother!”,
____a line of candles was on both sides of the hallway and at
the far end the store that sold old music instruments hanging
from the ceiling like the destitute, and in the middle the merchant,

The Carriage

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The foreigner chatted with the woman in a low tone, of course,
the woman was dead and he stared at his destiny, that useless outline
the dead leave on the chair,
birds struck the ceiling and fell into the dirty sink where all
the stories ended, embalmed old men sat behind the window glass
the stoa was dark, the stores wet where they sold tripods for caskets
and wreaths for glory we had once dreamed off,

The Empty Coat

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Translation by Manolis Aligizakis
of Tasos Livaditis-Selected Poems

Night fell and in the old house only the shadows remained, “aunt
Eudokia”, I said to her, “be serious, you are dead now”
but she retained the same awkward smile, like back then when she hid
something which I wasn’t allowed to know as yet
the foreigner narrated stories of signs and wonders, ancient old
murders, he also talked about a fly on the child’s glass and that he burnt
its wings “since then it stands there as if to punish me” and he pointed
far away to the road he never took