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


The other boys were playing at the soccer field;

their voices were heard over the roofs of the neighbourhood;

the bounce of the ball was heard too, like a round world

              full of fun and audacity.

However, he was constantly reading by the spring window,

inside a square filled with sad quietness

until, at the end he fell asleep, there, on the window sill

not hearing the voices of his school buddies in the afternoon

nor the early fears of his predominance.

His glasses fell on his nose and resembled a small

bicycle leaning on a tree, far away, in a distant,

sunlit countryside, a bicycle of a child that had died.



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