When you set out for Ithaca, ask that the journey be long,
full of adventures, full of things to learn.
The Laestrygonians and the Cyclops, angry Poseidon - do not fear them.
Such as these you will never find on your way,
if you have elevated thoughts, if choice emotions touch your spirit and your flesh.
The Laestrygonians and the Cyclops and fierce Poseidon you will not meet,
unless you carry them in your heart, unless your heart sets them in your path.
Pray that your journey will be long; that there may be many summer mornings when,
with what joy, what delight, you will enter harbours you have not seen before;
and you will stop at Phoenician trading-ports, acquire beautiful merchandise,
mother-of-pearl and coral, amber and ebony, and sensuous perfumes of all kinds -
as many sensuous perfumes as you can. Visit many Egyptian cities, to gather stores
of knowledge from the learned.
Have Ithaca always in your mind. Your destination is to arrive there; but do not
hurry your journey in the least. Better that it may last for many years, that you
cast anchor at that island when you are old, rich with all you have gained on the way,
not expecting that Ithaca will give you wealth; Ithaca gave you that splendid journey.
Without her you would not have set out. She has nothing else to offer.
And if you find her poor, Ithaca has not deceived you. You have acquired such wisdom,
so much experience, that you will have already realised what these Ithacas mean.4>
Long-drawn, sad, eastern songs of Iannina, Smyrna and Istanbul,
how my heart is dragged along with you;
it is moulded by your music,
and flies with the movement of your wings.
A mother gave you birth;
she speaks and groans and sheds heavy perfume on you;
her lustful kiss burns.
She trembles, worshipping Fate, a soul of the flesh,
a slave in a harem: the love-weary East.
In you, black poverty is weeping;
even your joy, is a bitter slow dirge.
Wretched, poor, a slave, lazy, narrow-hearted,
unemployed, I too am a passer-by with you.
On the beach abandoned by its ships,
where only seaweed and sea-lillies grow,
in the dream of th sea and of the sky,
to live my life forlorn,
inactive, dumb, with no single care to warm me,
with such thoughts only.
As suffice to stand like a tree,
like a smoker weaving small blue circles of smoke in the air,
and, from time to time, moving my lips to revive the sorrow
that crushes heavily upon you,
that is always starting, circling, and that never ends.
A people live in you and wither;
shackled lives that writhe;
long-drawn, sad eastern songs of Iannina, Smyrna and Instanbul.
Είπες· «Θα πάγω σ' άλλη γή, θα πάγω σ' άλλη θάλασσα,
Μια πόλις άλλη θα βρεθεί καλλίτερη από αυτή.
Κάθε προσπάθεια μου μια καταδίκη είναι γραφτή·
κ' είν' η καρδιά μου -- σαν νεκρός -- θαμένη.
Ο νους μου ως πότε μες στον μαρασμό αυτόν θα μένει.
Οπου το μάτι μου γυρίσω, όπου κι αν δω
ερείπια μαύρα της ζωής μου βλέπω εδώ,
που τόσα χρόνια πέρασα και ρήμαξα και χάλασα».
Καινούριους τόπους δεν θα βρεις, δεν θάβρεις άλλες θάλασσες.
Η πόλις θα σε ακολουθεί. Στους δρόμους θα γυρνάς
τους ίδιους. Και στες γειτονιές τες ίδιες θα γερνάς·
και μες στα ίδια σπίτια αυτά θ' ασπρίζεις.
Πάντα στην πόλι αυτή θα φθάνεις. Για τα αλλού -- μη ελπίζεις --
δεν έχει πλοίο για σε, δεν έχει οδό.
Ετσι που τη ζωή σου ρήμαξες εδώ
στην κώχη τούτη την μικρή, σ' όλην την γή την χάλασες.
Κωνσταντίνος Π. Καβάφης (1910)
After these long years parted,
who do you in mirror see?
The person you wanted,
or someone its safe to be?
I wonder if joy inhabits your life,
or did you settle for content?
Are you happy with choices made,
or regret dreams forwent?
Do thoughts of me ever drift to mind,
just before the escape of sleep?
And would you harbor them close,
or instead bury them deep?
Is what you can hold in hand,
more precious than that held in heart?
Does passion possess you
or do you just play your part?
Perhaps yearning and desire,
best to forsake.
Since hopes are merely dreams,
for the awake.
Rick - seer of peripheral vision
Fair daffodils, we weep to see you haste away so soon:
As yet the early-rising sun has not attained his noon.
Stay, stay, until the hasting day has run but to the evensong;
And, having prayed together, we will go with you along.
We have short time to stay as you; we have as short a spring;
As quick a growth to meet decay, as you or anything.
We die, as your hours do, and dry away
Like to the summer's rain;
Or as the pearls of morning's dew, ne'er to be found again.
Robert Herrick (1591-1674)
I Wandered Lonely As a Cloud
I wandered lonely as a cloud
That floats on high o'er vales and hills,
When all at once I saw a crowd,
a host of golden daffodils;
Beside the lake, beneath the trees,
Fluttering and dancing in the breeze.
Continuous as the stars that shine
And twinkle in the milk way,
They stretched in never-ending line
Along the margin of the bay;
Ten thousand saw I at a glance,
Tossing their heads in sprightly dance.
The waves beside them danced; but they
Outdid the sparkling waves in glee;
A poet could not but be gay,
In such a jocund company;
I gazed, and gazed, but little thought
What wealth the show to me had brought.
For oft, when on my couch I lie
In vacant or in pensive mood,
They flash upon that inward eye
Which is the bliss of solitude;
And then my heart with pleasure fills,
And dances with the daffodils.
William Wordsworth (1770-1850)
I am troubled
Lost writings of Jim Morrison
By your eyes
I am struck
By the feather
of your soft
The sound of glass
What your eyes fight
Love Without a Face
I feel a silent whisper, laughter without sound.
A voice that speaks to me so deep, is silent all around.
If you ever feel a touch when you are alone,
or a gentle kiss upon your neck when no one else is home;
Remember that our spirits are never far apart
Because there's no distance between us, as there's none between our hearts.
Close your eyes for me, feel my soft caress
My hands entwine with yours as we share a single breath.
Love that travels distances, that moves through time and space
Is the purest love known to man; Love without a face.