Monday, December 19, 2005

Perspective by Yannis Ritsos

Our houses are built on other,
straight lined houses, made of marble,
and these on other houses.
Their foundations are supported
on the heads of upright armless statues.
And so, no matter how much lower
our huts roost in the fields
under the olive trees,
small, grimy with smoke,
with only a water pitcher by the door,
you imagine you are living high up,
that all about you the air shines,
or at times you imagine you are outside
the houses, that you have no house at all,
that you are walking naked, alone,
under a sky startlingly azure or white,
and a statue, now and then,
leans his hand lightly on your shoulder.

(‘Perspective’, from Testimonies, translated by Kimon Friar.)

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