Archive for the ‘KIKI DIMOULA’ Category

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ΜΕΛΑΓΧΟΛΙΑ

Στον ουρανό ακροβατεί μεγάλη σκοτεινιά.
Κι έτσι καθώς με πήρε το παράθυρο αγκαλιά
με το ένα χέρι
στο δωμάτιο μέσα σέρνω
του δρόμου την απίστευτη ερημιά
με το άλλο παίρνω
μια χούφτα συννεφιά
και στην ψυχή μου σπέρνω.

MELANCHOLY

A great darkness skates on thin ice upon the sky.
Thus as the window hugged me
with one hand
I pull inside the room
the unbelievable loneliness of the street
with the other hand
I grab a handful of darkness
and throw it on my soul

~ΕΡΕΒΟΣ-EREBUS, by KIKI DIMOULA, ΙΚΑΡΟΣ, 1956, // translated by Manolis Aligizakis

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kiki-dimoula
ΚΑΠΟΙΕΣ ΝΥΧΤΕΣ

Τώρα που πίσω από πέλαγα
έχουν χαθεί τα παλαιά μου οράματα
και δεν με φτάνει η μορφή τους
κι η ανάμνησή τους μ’ άφησε

Δεν το `θελα ποτέ
σε τέτοιες σκέψεις να γυρίσω.
Μα είναι νύχτες,
κάποιες ατέλειωτες,
που από τα πέλαγα
όλως ακούραστα
τα παλαιά μου οράματα
τα φέρνω πίσω.

 

SOME NIGHTS

Now that my old visions
have vanished far away in the seas
and their shape can’t reach me
and their memory has left me

I never wished
to return to such thoughts.
Yet during
some endless nights
and almost tirelessly
my old visions
from the far away seas
I recall

~ΕΡΕΒΟΣ-EREBUS, by KIKI DIMOULA, ΙΚΑΡΟΣ, 1956, // translated by Manolis Aligizakis

kiki-dimoula

ΜΟΝΟΚΟΝΤΥΛΙΕΣ

Εύκολα περιγράφομαι και λύνομαι
με μονοκοντυλιές.
Δεν είναι βαρετό αυτό
τις χειμωνιάτικες νύχτες.

Τραβήξτε πρώτα μια στερεά
μπηγμένη κατακόρυφα.
Αυτή θα `ναι η πίστη μου.
Μιαν άλλη αμέσως από απέναντι
βυθίστε την στο κέτρο της σχεδόν,
κατάλληλα έτσι
να μοιάζ’ η πρώτη κλονισμένη.
Βάλτε μεγάλες πλάι σε μικρές,
αχνές σε τονισμένες δίπλα,
να δείχνουνε τις τάσεις μου.
Φριντίστε αυτές να μην τελειώνουνε ποτέ
γιατί θα συντομέψετε άσχημα τη λύση μου.
Πετάξτε σκόρπιες μερικές
αλλά σ’ απίθανη κατεύθυνση,
τις αντιφάσεις μου.
Δύο μεγάλες κεντρικές προσθέστε
με του μοιραίου το χάσμα ανάμεσά τους.

Τώρα με το μολύβι
(ή με τη φαντασία σας)
φροντίστε πάνω από αυτά
μια καταχνιά να κάθεται,
γιατί με σκέτη μονοκοντυλιά
η θλίψη μου δεν περιγράφεται.

SINGLE STROKES OF THE PEN

You may easily describe and explain me
with single strokes of the pen.
It isn’t boring
during the winter nights.

A firm one you may draw up front
thrust it in vertically.
This will be my faith.
Another one you may draw from the opposite direction
thrust it deep into the center of the first
appropriately that the first one
will seem exhausted.
Place some long ones next to the short
the vague ones next to the underlined
to underscore my inclinations.
Make sure these don’t ever end
unless the explanation of me is shortened.
Scatter a few
of my objections
to all directions.
Add two long ones in the center
and between them the void of the inevitable.

Now with the pencil
(or your imagination)
make sure some mist hangs
over all these
cause with just one stroke of the pen
you can’t explain my sorrow.

~ΕΡΕΒΟΣ-EREBUS, by KIKI DIMOULA, ΙΚΑΡΟΣ, 1956, // translated by Manolis Aligizakis

The Best Literature Inspired by the Greek Islands

The Greek Islands have been a source of literary inspiration from the ancient times. The unique beauty of the natural landscape , the warm Mediterranean climate and distinct local culture are some of the reasons behind this inspiration. But also this small country’s hardships in the face of political changes and terrifying historical challenges have captured the attention of foreign and local authors. Below we have listed five of the most famous novels which take place in the Greek Islands.

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Table by the Sea in Greece © George Pachantouris/Flickr

Zorba the Greek (1946)
Zorba the Greek is perhaps the most famous Greek book by talented Greek author Nikos Kazantzakis. The book tells the story of a young Greek intellectual, the narrator, who spends a year in a rural village in the greek island of Crete with Zorba, a simple worker whose character is an antithesis of his own. Zorba is a man full of life and talents, with strong natural instincts and folk wisdom. The narrator slowly, and while experiencing the predicaments of rural life in Crete, comes to realise how weak his intellectual superiority is to Zorbas’ simple understanding of life. The book touched millions of hearts when it was turned into a movie in 1964 starring Anthony Queen. For many the character of Zorba became a popular symbol of Greek soul.

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Watching the Twilight in Patmos © Yiannis Theologos Michellis/Flickr
Captain Corelli’s Mandolin (1994)

Another book also turned into a movie is Captain Corelli’s Mandolin by Louis de Bernières. Set in the Greek island of Cephallonia during the German and Italian occupation of the Second World War, Captain Corelli’s Mandolin narrates the touching love story of Italian young captain Antonio Corelli and Pelagia, the daughter of the local Greek doctor. The romance that develops under adversary circumstances has to suffer the strikes of fate when Italy joins forces with the Allies and the Germans on the island turn on the Italians. Captain Corelli’s Mandolin is an emotionally charged story that works on different levels: It is a love story and war story and at the same time a historic account that reflects many of the bitter untold realities of the country’s wartime suffering.

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Scan1©TakaUmemura/Flickr
The Island (2005)

Victoria Hislop’s literary debut, the Island, begins with a woman travelling to the island of Crete in search of her mother’s past. She is surprised to find out that her mother’s native village of Plaka is near the island of Spinaloga, a former Greek leper colony. She will then learn from a family friend the tragic story of her mother’s family through three generations of tumultuous lives and passions. Victoria Hislop was awarded the 2007 British Book Award for the Island, and it also became a popular series for Greek television – To Nisi – and the most expensive television production ever in Greece.

The Two Faces of January (1964)
Patricia Highsmith’s 1964 psychological thriller narrates the story of an American con-artist Chester McFarland and his wife Colette, who find themselves in trouble in Greece when Chester accidentally kills a Greek policeman in his hotel room in Athens. A young American lawyer helps the couple to flee to Crete, where they settle in a hotel. But more trouble emerges there as the trio turn on each other and tragedy falls in the ancient site of Knossos. The story follows the classic Patricia Highsmith breathtaking storytelling pattern that moves the action to different locations: after Crete, back to Athens, and then to a whole new setting altogether in Paris. The Greek island becomes the “far away land” and offers an ideal setting for the emotions to rise and the action to culminate.

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Odysseus and the Sirens. An 1891 painting by John William Waterhouse © National Gallery of Victoria, Melbourne/WikiCommons
Odyssey (8th Century BC)

The world-famous ancient epic poem by Greek poet Homer is perhaps the one that captures the imagination the most, as it draws on an ancient past of heroes and mythical creatures. Three thousand years have passed since Odysseus found Ithaca again, and visitors from around the world still visit the island in the search of archaeological findings of Penelope’s palace. The epic Odyssey of the Greek hero who wondered ten years in the ancient seas searching for his homeland, Ithaca , will never cease to amaze, excite and inspire.

http://www.theculturetrip.com/europe/greece

kiki-dimoula

REPORT

Draw two columns
one for the day’s gains
and one for its losses.

The serious concepts
your bright thoughts and readings
your from one side to the other
unsparing passages
mark on the column of the gains.

The daydreams
with their little chasms
the easy jumps of your imagination
for all these tricks against your boredom
I don’t know, do not rush
perhaps tomorrow’s column of the gains you may need.

But all this day that has passed
don’t fool yourselves and don’t forget
under the column of the great losses
to write.

ΑΠΟΛΟΓΙΣΜΟΣ
Δυο στήλες χαρακώστε
για τις ζημιές της μέρας τούτης
και τα κέρδη της.

Τα σοβαρά νοήματα
τις φωτεινές σας σκέψεις, τα διαβάσματα
τ’ από τη μια γραμμή στην άλλη
άτεγκτα περάσματα
στη στήλη των κερδών να σημειώσετε.

Τα ονειροπολήματα
με τα μικρά τους χάσματα
της φαντασίας σας τα εύκολα πηδήματα
για όλα αυτά της πλήξης τα τεχνάσματα
δεν ξέρω, μη βιασθείτε,
ίσως των αυριανών κερδών τη στήλη χρειασθείτε.

Μα την ημέρα ολόκληρη που έφυγε
μη γελαστείτε και ξεχάσετε
στη στήλη των τρανών απωλειών
να την περάσετε.
~ΕΡΕΒΟΣ-EREBUS, by KIKI DIMOULA, ΙΚΑΡΟΣ, 1956, // translated by Manolis Aligizakis