Archive for 21/04/2020

Yannis Ritsos_cover4


Μπορεί και να μην ενοχλούνται οι άντρες απ’ αυτά
τα εξευτελιστικά ρυάκια του ιδρώτα
που σε χρησιμοποιούν αυθαίρετα για κοίτη τους
σα να ’σουν πέτρα ή χώμα ή καμένο χορτάρι. Δεν ξέρω.
Αυτοί, τα μεσημέρια, κατέφευγαν στα δημόσια λουτρά
παίζοντας ίσως και γελώντας γυμνοί, κυνηγώντας
ο ένας τον άλλον, καταβρέχοντας
ο ένας τον άλλον, με μεγάλα λαγήνια, — πώς μπορεί
να τρέχει ή να γελάει κανένας
όταν είναι γυμνός; — ποτέ δεν το κατάλαβα. Όταν έβγαιναν
απ’ τα λουτρά (τους συνάντησα κάποτε) ήταν πιο όμορφοι,
πιο ευγενικοί, σαν αόριστα ένοχοι· — τα πρόσωπά τους,
δροσερά τότε και ρόδινα, υπογράμμιζαν
μια παράξενη, παρθενική συστολή, και τότε μόνο αισθάνθηκα
πως και οι άντρες μπορεί να ’ναι μονάχοι και μπορεί να πεθάνουν.

Εκείνοι, βέβαια, το ξεχνούσαν ή ποτέ δεν το σκέφτονταν. Τ’ απογεύματα
ακούγονταν απ’ το στίβο οι ιαχές των θεατών. Τότε οργιζόμουν·
σκέφτηκα μάλιστα κάποτε να δωροδοκήσω
το γερο-φύλακα των αποδυτηρίων για να τους θυμίσει,
την ώρα ακριβώς που θα ’ταν μεθυσμένοι απ’ τη νίκη τους,
την ώρα ακριβώς που θα ’ταν αφημένοι στην εξαίσια κούρασή τους,
την ώρα ακριβώς που θα ’ταν υπερήφανα γυμνοί κι απροστάτευτοι,
να τους θυμίσει πως κι αυτοί θα γεράσουν,
να τους θυμίσει προπάντων πως κι αυτοί θα πεθάνουν. Ποτέ δεν το τόλμησα.



Men perhaps aren’t concerned with these

humiliating creeks of sweat that

use you as their shore, as if you were soil

or trimmed grass. I don’t know. Men go to

the public baths during the noon hours to play

and laugh and chase each other naked and

sprinkle each other using big jugs — who can

run and laugh when naked? — I never

understood it. When they would get out from

the baths (I met them once) they looked more

handsome than before, more polite, as if vaguely

guilty; their faces, fresh and rosy, underscored

a strange, virginal coyness, and only then I felt

that men can be alone and can also die.


They forgot or never thought of it, of course. The

shouts of the spectators were heard from the stadium

during the afternoons and then, I got very angry. I even

thought of bribing the old keeper of the washrooms

just to remind them, at the exact time when they would be

exuberant for their victory, absentminded in their superb

tiredness, in their proud nakedness and invincibility

to remind them, that they surely will die too. I never

dared do this.


Μετάφραση Μανώλη Αλυγιζάκη//Translated by Manolis Aligizakis





Η φιλοσοφία στην αρχαιότητα ήταν ανδροκρατούμενος χώρος, αλλά αυτές οι γυναίκες φιλόσοφοι αψήφισαν τα κρατούντα ήθη και προσέφεραν τα μέγιστα.

View original post 714 more words

The Gardens of Adonis – Trifling Pleasures

Posted: 21/04/2020 by vequinox in Literature


Erasmus, Adagia 1.4:

Ἀδώνιδος κῆποι, that is ‘the Gardens of Adonis’ used to be said of trifling and unprofitable things which were suited only to the brief pleasure of the moment. Pausanius notes that the gardens of Adonis were once among the little delights, teeming with lettuce and fennel, in which seeds used to be placed in a pot, and for that reason it came to be used proverbially against worthless and trifling fools who were born for insipid pleasures. Included in thus bunch are singers, sophists, bawdy poets, gluttons, and others of that sort. There were however two gardens sacred to Venus on account of Adonis, her love who was snatched away at the first bloom of his youth and turned into a flower. Plato makes mention of these in his Phaedrus: :

Ὁ νοῦν ἔχων γεωργός, ὧν σπερμάτων κήδοιτο καὶ ἔγκαρπα βούλοιτο γενέσθαι, πότερα σπουδῇ ἂν θέρους…

View original post 846 more words

Kant on the Feeling of Beautiful and Sublime

Posted: 21/04/2020 by vequinox in Literature


Easter Quote Week

On the 22nd of April 1724, Immanuel Kant was born in Königsberg, Prussia. The German philosopher discussed the subjective nature of aesthetic qualities and experiences in Observations on the Feeling of the Beautiful and Sublime, (1764):

51X8DPFXMDL“Philosophical eyes are microscopic.  Their view is exact but small and their intention is truth.  The sensible [sinnliche] view is bold and provides fanciful excess that is moving although only it will only be encountered in the imagination.

Beautiful and sublime are not the same.  The former swells the heart and makes the attention fixed and tense thereby tiring it. The latter lets the heart melt in a kind of softish sensation and, as it leaves the nerves behind here, the feeling becomes a gentler emotion which, if it goes too far, transforms into feebleness, boredom, and disgust.

The sublime must always be great; the beautiful can also be small. The sublime must be…

View original post 141 more words