Sunday, July 29, 2012

Poetry equipment

 Poetry equipment

Rules and norms on poetry (metrics, rhymes, structure...), terms and labels (romantic, modern, post-modern...): handy torches for the studious explorers with artistic curiosity...Pas mal! A steadfast initiative.

      All well-intentioned, willing interns in literature would need some equipment – let's say a pair of glasses or a hat, in order for them to be efficiently protected while making their acquaintance with the bright (lime?)light of poetry. The sticks of analysis would support their toddler steps into this road of intellectual and/or, existential discoveries.

However...would they really keep on walking with the whole lot of this stuff, even with that bat for the bushes, in the pocket of their bag? How would they pursue their march carrying all these bundles of scrutiny, without finding themselves at the hindrance of intimidating hesitation in front of a single log, fallen upon their route? Just before – or exactly at – the point where the road of poetry transcends into their personal “road less traveled”, would they be able to track it down effectively, when they have already become, more or less, heavy-footed, short-sighted observatory machines? Even if this wouldn't be the case, even if they had maintained some fresh glance on things, how much of their eyesight would have been left unrestricted, so that they could assume their creative perspective (either as poets or as critics)?

“Because, it happens sometimes in poetry: the ignorant one captures more efficiently the potentials which a stress of the language provides and dares to attempt them, when the other one, the profound connoisseur, has his own reasons to resist” (Od. Elytis).

It's here that we could attempt to pose the forthcoming question: consequently, what should the poet choose to be? A “daredevil” or a steady “connoisseur”?

A seemingly profound question; it would be nice, though, to underline the main controversies which such a question consists of: Should a poet “should”? Or even, would a poet “would”? Is there a “best attitude” for a poet? Does the verb “choose” correspond to the way a poet follows during the procedure of poetic creation? If it does, to what extend? And, last but not least: is a “daredevil” who isn't also a “connoisseur” (or vice versa) really, authentically, a poet?

As we all may be able to realise, this is the second stage that we, poetry travelers, usually encounter, after our first “induction” period of time. This is where we commonly meet the Sphinx of the poetry world, which throws its “riddles” to us, offering us the chance to transit from the pleasantly casual level of a simple visitor to the more responsible, painstaking and yet rewarding level of a permanent resident. Those who abandon their equipment there, in front of this Sphinx, are more likely to undo the “monster” with their answers, and eventually free to proceed and dwell in poetry. These ones are often the most capable of determining their poetic flow than being determined by it, as they have the ability to handle the reins with originality without being reined by external forms – and without, on the other hand, getting troubled by them when in use.

All in all, poetry is a route of sequenced creating and re-creating life using the fundametal constructive elements of speech: words. In a wider scope, poetry is generally creating (from texts to meals, or even connections and relationships) - and then it becomes a life itself. As William Blake's quote suports: "I must create a system or be enslaved by another man's; I will not reason and compare: my business is to create"

And now, if you'll excuse me, I'm going to withdraw, in order to resume my march and solve my personal poetic “riddles”.


Monday, July 23, 2012


(Zafiria Kostopoulou, 2011)


One or two traveling clouds hitched to the yoke of the wind.
They're passing by and leaving...
It's queer and heavy, the yoke of the wind.

One or two stories planted in the flowerpot of memory.
They're blooming and scenting...
It's fertile and soft, the soil of memory.

One or two steps away, an umbrella undergoes the battle for shade.
It's opening and opening...
It evaluates pensively the cost of current wages.


(written in 1997)

Sunday, July 15, 2012


(Antonio Gaudi)

Limmericks (variations)

i)  I can't catch without a glove and I don't.
    I can't leave without a shoe and I won't.
    I will put on my hat
    Will I need socks or what?
    My batter is what I mostly want.

ii)  A zebra climbed upon a see-saw.
     Each edge she pondered with bright awe.
     She filled a song bucket.
     She danced with a jacket.
     Let's see what she'll end up to know.

iii) An open book voiced openly
     A main road swerved mainly
     A weather forecasted
     A feather broadcasted
     A vague twine holds on vaguely


(written in 2012)

Thursday, July 12, 2012


(Zafiria Kostopoulou 2012)


The road is shaking and rippling - I'm afraid
Same old well-known itineraries
I gather pieces to glue - I'm sorry
And? These ones, fallen in front of me?

Anything lost I seek and I give you - I'm afraid
At last authentic coins in my pocket
The stitches are being cut slowly - I'm sorry
And? This truth which flickers in front of me?

The wind grabs me and puts me down - I'm afraid
The only thing holding me: your hand
You are here beside me now - I remember
And? These thorns scattered all around us?


(written in 2000)

Saturday, July 7, 2012



Imagination is a lens.
Recklessly thrown upon reality
distorts its elements.
Channeled through art
projects inner hidden worlds
either baffling or transluscent.

A handy tool it may be
for the articulate souls
their paths to follow.

Steered by hearts
only hearts can stir
while minds usually
evaluate its keys.


(written in 2012)


("Old Town", Vassili Kandinski)


                Little towns
                Their residents
                quite sibyllic
                Among rusty currents of living

                zephyr can spread while achieving
                open spots to settle in.
                As long as it creates therein.

               Various friends
               at times pictures
               Following a route costs sheer contentment
               between prerequisite and amendment.
               Keeping held back is giving in.
               Resuming forth is breathing in. 


(written in 2012)

Wednesday, July 4, 2012



step by step                                     stop by stop

a chain reaction    

word after word                               time after time

a feathered reflection 

battle after battle                       stance after stance 

a curved gravity         

tireless tillers                       of beings and presents 

a lush land facing you 

a turbulent sea facing me

and harvests of I Love You. 

Συν - τριβη

βήμα το βημα                                          στάση τη στάση 

αλυσιδωτη αντίδραση

λεξη τη λέξη                                                 ώρα την ώρα 

φτερωτη επισκόπηση

μαχη τη μάχη                                                 θέση τη θέση 

καμαρωτη βαρύτητα

ζευγολατες                                                            ακαματοι

οντων και παρόντων

βλαστωμενη στεριά απεναντι σου

απεναντι μου ανυπότακτη θάλασσα

και σοδειές Σ' αγαπώ

(written in 1997)

Monday, July 2, 2012



Along with the Welcome 
came some apprehension too
that the final stair steps on a peak.
Unspeakable poverty...
Here's the cause 
which accelerates
the fall
and all the power 
dissolves into timidity.
I've said it before:
flights are difficult,
even though a compass 
has been found.
A wing is still necessary
and a decision.
Realization is survival!


Με το Καλωσόρισες
Ήρθε και κάποια αγωνία
Πως τ' ακροτελεύτιο σκαλί
Παταει μιαν ακρωρεια
Αρρητη ένδεια
Νατη η αιτία που επισπευδει
Το πέσιμο
Και διαλύεται
Όλη η πυγμή σε κλαυσίγελο
Το 'πα και πρωτύτερα
Είναι δύσκολα τα πτητικα
Κι ας βρέθηκε η πυξίδα
Χρειάζεται ακόμα το φτερό
Και μια αποφαση
Συναίσθηση ίσον επιβίωση


(written in 1995)
(Η ελληνική εκδοχή συμπεριλαμβάνεται στον "Χαρακτηριστικό Ηχο")