Poet for this Week, October 25th, Constantine P. Cavafy

The God Abandons Anthony

When suddenly, at midnight, you hear
an invisible procession going by
with exquisite music, voices,
don’t mourn your luck that’s failing now,
work gone wrong, your plans
all proving deceptive — don’t mourn them uselessly.
As one long prepared, and graced with courage,
say goodbye to her, the Alexandria that is leaving.
Above all, don’t fool yourself, don’t say
it was a dream, your ears deceived you:
don’t degrade yourself with empty hopes like these.
As one long prepared, and graced with courage,
as is right for you who were given this kind of city,
go firmly to the window
And listen with deep emotion, but not
with whining, the pleas of a coward;
listen — your final delectation — to the voices,
to the exquisite music of that strange procession,
and say goodbye to her, to the Alexandria you are losing.

Footsteps

On an ebony bed decorated
with coral eagles, sound asleep lies
Nero — unconscious, quiet, and blissful;
thriving in the vigor of flesh,
and in the splendid power of youth.

But in the alabaster hall that encloses
the ancient shrine of the Aenobarbi
how restive are his Lares.
The little household gods tremble,
and try to hide their insignificant bodies.
For they heard a horrible clamor,
a deathly clamor ascending the stairs,
iron footsteps rattling the stairs.
And now in a faint the miserable Lares,
burrow in the depth of the shrine,
one tumbles and stumbles upon the other,
one little god falls over the other
for they understand what sort of clamor this is,
they are already feeling the footsteps of the Furies.

Walls

With no consideration, no pity, no shame,
they have built walls around me, thick and high.
And now I sit here feeling hopeless.
I can’t think of anything else: this fate gnaws my mind -
because I had so much to do outside.
When they were building the walls, how could I not have noticed!
But I never heard the builders, not a sound.
Imperceptibly they have closed me off from the outside world.

Constantine P. Cavafy

I am somewhat under a cloud as they say and will be re-posting things from the past until I am more myself. I hope this will not deter anyone from staying around. I appreciate your support. I will also probably not be posting the quantity of work I have in the past. Quote for a Day, and Poet for this Week will still continue as always. I hope what I do post will be acceptable. Thank you very much. >KB

 

This entry was published on October 25, 2013 at 12:30 am. It’s filed under Poetry, Quotation, The Sacred, Writing and tagged , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. Follow any comments here with the RSS feed for this post.
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