Death is the bullies bashing
against the black walls and roof tiling,
death is the women being loved
in the course of onion peeling.

Death the squalid, unimportant streets
with their glamorous and pompous names,
the olive-grove, the surrounding sea, and even
the sun, death among all other deaths.

Death the policeman bending over
to weigh, a 'lacking' portion,
death the harebells on the balcony
and the teacher with the newspaper.

Base, Guard, Sixty-man Prevezian Rule.
On Sunday we'll listen to the band.
I've taken out a savings booklet,
my first deposit drachmas thirty one.

Walking slowly on the quay,
'do I exist?' you say, and then: 'you do not!'
The ship approaches. The flag is flying.
Perhaps Mr. Prefect will be coming.

If at least, among these people,
one would die of sheer disgust
silent, bereaved, with humble manners,
at the funeral we'd all have fun.

by Kostas Karyotakis

Comments (7)

Yes, I celebrate your life. You survived and you triumphed. That is what life does for the best of us. You were stirred by the cultural revolutions during which you were seen and negated as a nonwhite and a woman. Stirred, you refused to be jailed by preconceptions and bias. Stirred you struggled as the best of us must. We gain strength from the rotten experiences of life and shape ourselves into starshine instead of a cringing ball of mud.
This shows us the courage and conviction of a woman in an hostile environment. Need of the hour. Thanks.
Babylon! ! With the muse of the hardships of life. Thanks for sharing.
Nice poem, a brave lady who dified odds to make it to stardom, great.
A very strong woman, who has managed to see the good in her circumstances. Very motivating and emotional.
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