Archive for 10/01/2022

Yannis Ritsos-Poems, Selected Books

Posted: 10/01/2022 by vequinox in Literature

Yannis Ritsos-Poems, Selected Books

Peplacements

Ο ΤΥΦΛΟΣ ΤΟΥ ΙΟΥΛΙΟΥ

Ωραίος τυφλός, κάτω απ’ το φανοστάτη, στο λιοπύρι του Ιουλίου,

πουλάει χάρτινα καπέλα στους τουρίστες. Είναι Έλληνας αυτός

στη μέση του ζωνάρι καραβόσκοινο, στην ξανθή του γενειάδα

σκόρπια μαβιάλουλούδια λυγαριάς. Αυτός γνωρίζει πως τις νύχτες,

με το μεγάλο φεγγαρόφωτο, θαλασοπούλια κοιμούνται

μες στα σαντάλια των αφήβων ή τα δανείζονται νεκροί θεοί

για ν’ ανέβουνε τις σκοινένιες ανεμόδσκαλες, και το ρόδινο χάραμα,

ζεστά ακόνη απ’ τα εξαίσια πόδια τους, τ’ αφήνουν αθόρυβα

πλάι στα κοιμιμένα αγόρια. Μήπως, αλήθεια, δεν ήταν τυφλός;

July’s Blind

Beautiful blind man under the lamppost in July’s scorching sun

selling paper hats to tourists He is true Hellene

on his waist a belt made of rope scattered mauve osier flowers

on his blond beard He knows how in the night under

the bright moonlight the seabirds sleep inside

the sandals of ephebes or young gods borrow them

to climb the rope ladders and at the rosy dawn

still warm from their exquisite feet are left noiselessly

next to the sleeping youngsters Perhaps he is not truly blind?

Titos Patrikios-Selected Poems

Posted: 10/01/2022 by vequinox in Literature

TITOS PATRIKIOS — SELECTED POEMS

ΜΑΘΗΤΕΙΑ (1956-1959)

ΠΑΡΑΜΟΝΗ ΠΡΩΤΟΜΑΓΙΑΣ

Μπλεγμένς εξοχικές διασκεδάσεις κι ώρες εργασίας

κέντρα κατάφωτα στα τέρματα, ολοσκότεινες συνοικίες

λάβαρα της επίσημης τελετής, πλακάτ κρυμμένα για τη διαδήλωση

δρόμοι που καταλήγουν απαραιτήτως κάπου

σπίτια αμέτρητα, δωμάτια χωρισμένα σαν κελιά

με κάγκελα με σίδερα, χωρισμένοι άνθρωποι

από τυφλές ανάγκες, αστυνομικές διώξεις

το εργατικό κέντρο σιωπηλό με τη φρουρά του

κι οι προκηρύξεις να γλιστράν κάτω απ’ τις πόρτες

προλετάριοι λένε, ένα αυτοκίνητο σπαθίζει το σκοτάδι

κάποιος τρέχει, το βήμα του χαφιέ, προλετάριοι ενωθείτε,

τα βήματα των μεθυσμένων, πότε χτιστήκαν τόσα σπίτια;

Κρυμμένη γιορτή πίσω από τη μεταμφίεση των ανθέων

που περιμένει να την ξαναβρούμε.

EVE OF MAY THE FIRST

Mixed up country entertainment and hours of work

fully lit taverns at the bus terminals, pitch black

neighborhoods, banners of the official ceremony

hidden placards for the demonstration

streets that clearly lead somewhere

innumerable houses, small rooms like cells with

steel bars, separated people because of special

needs, police persecutions, the workers center is silent

with its guards, manifestos slipping under the doors,

proletariat, they said, a car goes through darkness,

someone jogs, the traitor’s walk, proletariat unite,

the footsteps of the drunks, when were these houses

built? A celebration hidden behind the disguised

flowers that expects us to re-discover it.  

John Pilger

Posted: 10/01/2022 by vequinox in Literature

BRITAIN’S CLASS WAR ON CHILDREN

26 November 2020

http://johnpilger.com/articles/britain-s-class-war-on-children

A British family from the film Smashing Kids, 1975. Photograph: John Garrett

When I first reported on child poverty in Britain, I was struck by the faces of children I spoke to, especially the eyes. They were different: watchful, fearful.

In Hackney, in 1975, I filmed Irene Brunsden’s family. Irene told me she gave her two-year-old a plate of cornflakes. “She doesn’t tell me she’s hungry, she just moans. When she moans, I know something is wrong.”

“How much money do you have in the house? I asked.

“Five pence,” she replied.

Irene said she might have to take up prostitution, “for the baby’s sake”. Her husband Jim, a truck driver who was unable to work because of illness, was next to her. It was as if they shared a private grief.

This is what poverty does. In my experience, its damage is like the damage of war; it can last a lifetime, spread to loved ones and contaminate the next generation. It stunts children, brings on a host of diseases and, as unemployed Harry Hopwood in Liverpool told me, “it’s like being in prison”.

This prison has invisible walls. When I asked Harry’s young daughter if she ever thought that one day she would live a life like better-off children, she said unhesitatingly: “No”.

What has changed 45 years later? At least one member of an impoverished family is likely to have a job – a job that denies them a living wage. Incredibly, although poverty is more disguised, countless British children still go to bed hungry and are ruthlessly denied opportunities.

What has not changed is that poverty is the result of a disease that is still virulent yet rarely spoken about – class.

Study after study shows that the people who suffer and die early from the diseases of poverty brought on by a poor diet, sub-standard housing and the priorities of the political elite and its hostile “welfare” officials – are working people. In 2020, one in three preschool British children suffers like this.

In making my recent film, ‘The Dirty War on the NHS’, it was clear to me that the savage cutbacks to the NHS and its privatisation by the Blair, Cameron, May and Johnson governments had devastated the vulnerable, including many NHS workers and their families. I interviewed one low-paid NHS worker who could not afford her rent and was forced, to sleep in churches or on the streets.

At a food bank in central London, I watched young mothers looking nervously around as they hurried away with old Tesco bags of food and washing powder and tampons they could no longer afford, their young children holding on to them. It is no exaggeration that at times I felt I was walking in the footprints of Dickens.

Boris Johnson has claimed that 400,000 fewer children are living in poverty since 2010 when the Conservatives came to power. This is a lie, as the Children’s Commissioner has confirmed. In fact, more than 600,000 children have fallen into poverty since 2012; the total is expected to exceed 5 million. This, few dare say, is a class war on children.

Old Etonian Johnson is maybe a caricature of the born-to-rule class; but his “elite” is not the only one. All the parties in Parliament, notably if not especially Labour – like much of the bureaucracy and most of the media – have scant if any connection to the “streets”: to the world of the poor: of the “gig economy”: of battling a system of Universal Credit that can leave you without a penny and in despair.

Last week, the prime minister and his “elite” showed where their priorities lay. In the face of the greatest health crisis in living memory when Britain has the highest Covid-19 death toll in Europe and poverty is accelerating as the result of a punitive “austerity” policy, he announced £16.5 billion for “defence”. This makes Britain, whose military bases cover the world, the highest military spender in Europe.

And the enemy? The real one is poverty and those who impose it and perpetuate it.

John Pilger’s 1975 film, Smashing Kids, can be viewed here. Follow John Pilger on twitter @johnpilger

ΕΛΛΑΣ

Πολλά τα ερωτήματα: Γιατί o Δαρείος απαγόρευσε στον ναύαρχό του Δάτη να εισβάλει στη Δήλο; Γιατί ορίστηκε η απαγόρευση να γεννιέται ή να πεθαίνει κανείς στη Δήλο; Τι σημαίνει άραγε ο όρος «δήλοι» και τι αναφέρει γι’ αυτόν η Παλιά Διαθήκη;

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