Path of Thorns

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English poems, 120 pages
ISBN: 1-4259-0688-5
Published in 2006 by AuthorHouse
$14.95 CAD

 

“I think Manolis is the best émigré Greek writer in Canada and I welcome his return to publishing.”
– J. Michael Yates

 Synopsis

Path of Thorns is a very powerful collection, addressing universal themes – childhood, love, exile, endurance, death – but grounded in Manolis’ experience of civil war in Greece, and migration to Canada. He also explores the paradoxes underlying contemporary global suffering, epitomised in the floods of New Orleans. Yet the final sequence is a mythic celebration of our potential for self-transformation and creativity. In his intense lyricism Manolis pays homage to the Hellenic poetic tradition embodied in writers like Kazantzakis and Elytis, while reminding us of a common humanity that transcends cultures. These poems will resonate with many readers, at many levels.

Excerpt

LIGHTNING

Light condenses for tension

descends to conquer

to burn

 

bark of the tree

soul of the termite

flesh of man

light condenses for tension

 

ascends from the abysmal space-time

to conquer man’s sin

burn the soul of the jasmine

flesh of an erred errant

 

the bark of this spruce

light condenses for tension

to stand in front of man

who emerges from the abyss

 

stronger than space-time

a cruel silence

he stands firmly on the ground

erected over the dirt.

 

 

ANCIENT ROOTS

 

Roots of my family

ancient, eternal, deeply immersed

in my blood

divinely dance in time

commanding me to speak

for the black cloaked widows

innumerable orphans

tightly hanging onto my line

command me to speak.

 

Fate of my ancestry

reborn world of pain

you that have always being

my springboard

 

I humbly offer this chalice to you.

 

Heaven

A balcony, his heaven, in the midst
of Death
a rosebush this insignificant pot
of hope
half in water a stem skywards and
thorns.
Thorny task of protocol to identify
a life
in the maze of numbers, meaningless words
of the system
which knows the importance
of protocol
system that knows to count
man’s value
in hungry dollars, hungrier cents
of littleness
thorny task of the protocol to evaluate
man’s dream

Poor bastard, he had a dream
Poor bastard, he dared have a dream

 

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