Yannis Ritsos – Poems, Selected Books, Volume II, Second Edition


As the tempest galloped from the suburbs to the city

clatter of horse-hooves was heard on the cobblestones.

            The conspirators

opened their nostrils wide for a great welcome,

for resistance, for a continuous battle. One of them

held a knife, seeking in all this clatter to share the bread,

in equal parts, in true justice. The tempest didn’t come;

only some big raindrops fell on the dusty sidewalk.

            Nothing else.

They experienced the humiliation of a futile preparation

           and at the end they saw  

that they didn’t have anything to share or say

and the man with the knife didn’t exist.



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