Gift from Tatiana: Nikiforos Vrettakos
Tatiana, a new friend from Greece, recently introduced me to Greek poet Nikiforos Vrettakos. I LOVE finding a new poet to love, and this one's spectacular. He reminds me a bit of Pablo Neruda, and when I peeked at Wikipedia, there were several similarities. Both published their first collections of poetry around 17-18 years of age. Both were involved in military/government and were dissidents in some way. And the poems of both are thoughtful, sensual, spiritual, yet earthy.
The local public library does not have his books, so I just ordered a book of his selected poetry, Thirty Years in the Rain, used from Amazon.com. Thank you Tatiana!
A smaller world (from Diary, translated by Rick M. Newton)
I seek a shore where I can fence in
a patch of the horizon with
trees or reeds. Where, gathering infinity,
I can have the sense that: there are no machines
or very few; there are no soldiers
or very few; there are no weapons
or very few, and those few aimed at the exit
of the forests with wolves; or that there are no merchants
or very few at remote
points on the earth where
paved roads have not yet been laid.
God hopes that
at least in the poets' sobs paradise will never cease to exist.
The field of words (translated by Marjorie Chambers)
Like the bee round a wild
flower, so am I. I prowl
continuously around the word.
I thank the long lines
of ancestors who moulded the voice.
Cutting it into links, they made
meanings. Like smelters they
forged it into gold and it became
Homer, Aeschylus, the Gospels
and other jewels.
With the thread
of words, this gold
from gold, which comes from the depths
of my heart, I am linked, I take part in
I said and wrote, "I love."