POEM BY KOSTAS KARIOTAKIS
FOR AN OLD FELLOW STUDENT
Now that my heart has aged, my friend
and my years in Athens have passed
sweetly and joyously in parties
and sometimes in the grief of hunger
I won’t ever return to the homeland that
graced me with the celebration of youth
but only as a hoping passerby
traveller with my dream that vanished
a pilgrim I’ll go back to your house
to find out they don’t know where you are.
Along with someone else I’ll meet your Aphrodite
while others will occupy the house of peace.
I’ll go to the tavern to re-order
the Samos wine we used to drink
I’ll miss you and their wine will taste different
yet I’ll drink and I’ll get drunk
singing and staggering I’ll go
to Zappeion where we used to go together
the horizon will be wide open all around
and my song will sound like a lament.