Σάββατο, 23 Φεβρουαρίου 2013

YORGOS CHRONAS --- In Two Arcadian Ways For Aphrodite













IN TWO ARCADIAN WAYS FOR APHRODITE

A

I should have thrown my hairpins in the fire
From the word go
Cut my hair for you
That arriving on a damp night
You’d catch sight of my shadow from afar                                   5              
If I make you come from the waters
you’d have sleeky hair
If I make you come from the cafés
I’d smell their smoke in the air
Ah, yes! I’ll picture you to myself                                                   10
alighting beauteous from the motorail at night
the station lights extinguished
And you looking for a porter, for assistance
thus delaying your arrival
I’ll make the wind rumple your skirts                                          
without disturbing
the strewn leaves over the tiles
I’ll play records on the gramophone
I’ll hang sheets over a high window
“Hey, you with the bags down there,” I’ll shout,                        20
“come up
up the stairs
What are you doing here this time of night?”

I, a forlorn hairdresser                                                                    
in these villages                                                                            
these submerged harbours,
where can I find the money to carry through my plans?
Ladies with unnatural hair come to me
They prattle on, dead and they don’t know it
make themselves comfy                                                                  
leaf through magazines

and entrust me with their heads
One wrong move
and off they’d be

Now that my clients arrive                                                               35
unrecognizable beneath masks
-     unrecognizable even to each other-
in what square, what cinema of what capital city
can I stand and shout:
“You, headless bodies, why do you insist on having your hair
               set?”                                                                                    
                                                                                                             
My latest styling involved
two or three hairclips,
the hair tied back with a ribbon
I said to her: “Go back to your fields, my girl.                             45
What on earth are you doing here?
Why come to me
for a new look?
Having lost the one you had,
what hopes do you have acquiring another?”                            

Around Good Fridays he left me
“I’m off to Zagreb,” he said
I saw him for the last time in the mirror
He was smoking and gently waving
to the men across loading friges, rugs and spices                        55

I stood before the mirror till the noise
of their motors stopped
That evening I flung hairclips, powders, combs and peroxide
to the ground                                                                                    
I hung coathangers around the walls
Switched on the radio
Nothing       Nothing
My dear departed Aphrodite
show yourself in the mirror
and bring me as before my drowned
mother                                                                                                
When she emerges in front of the chairs,
among the room’s metallic objects, let her come and lie down
on the floor and chide me wearily as always:
“Enough of your carryings-on.                                                        70
Find yourself a husband.
Be done with dyes and perms”

Appear in this my broken mirror
late-lamented Aphrodite
and bring me as before Evdokia                                                    
Into this moneybox I drop coins
Here I place my earnings
and my savings
Take it and give it to her, buy her whatever dress
whatever nightie she fancies                                                           80

I don’t want to end up alone



B

Today I went down to the craggy slopes
there where boulders scan the sea
and saw inscribed thereon
this magically-turned phrase:
Friend Aphrodite, for her benevolence. Maarcos. ORBIUS.
             Pythonikis                                                                               
And I sat aside thinking
what did Aphrodite ever do for me?
Did she come to my door in the guise of a fisherman
a tinker, a workman
or an artisan?                                                                                       10                                                                                             
Or did she think the mirror mother left me
And such merchandise as is displayed in shopwindows were
       compensation enough?
Has she a place among us any more?
Has she a face, a telegraph at home                                              
Is her shape woven on wharfs?
Does rain drench her
In the streets, at stations?
What doors does she find open?
Does she visit those girlfriends of mine                                          20
in the manner of pandemos Aphrodite?
Does she find shoes to wear?
Is her body clad in taffetas?

And I said: “Yes, she visits
in the manner of a man who knocks off at twelve                      
return home alone
and gets his own back by hitting me-the newspapers are full of
                      such stuff.”
And I said: “Yes, Aphrodite knocks on men’s doors only
Soils their clothes with oils
Smears lime and mud on their hair
Hangs chains round their necks”                                                      30

And looking left and right to make sure no one was coming
I walked to the place fenced in by the Municipality
with a No Entry sign on the gate
and using paint
-prepared by combining lampblack, incense and boiling water 35                                                                                
by our Martha, the easiest lay of all-
I wrote:

Friend Aphrodite, for her mavolence. Stella. Fotini. Varvara.








YORGOS  CHRONAS  99  POEMS '  99 ΠΟΙΗΜΑΤΑ
Selected ,translated , introdused  by  Yannis  Goumas   http://www.odospanos-cigaret.gr/



ART  images 
Nina Papaconstantinou