C.P. Cavafy Collected Poems – Edmund Keeley / Phillip Sherrard
When one of them moved through the marketplace of Selefkia
just as it was getting dark—
moved like a young man, tall, extremely handsome,
with the joy of being immortal in his eyes,
with his black and perfumed hair—
the people going by would gaze at him,
and one would ask the other if he knew him,
if he was a Greek from Syria, or a stranger. (extract from One of their Gods)
The Greek poet C. P. Cavafy (1863-1933) lived most of his life in Alexandria, where he was content to circulate his work only among a select group of readers; but since his death he has come to be recognised and widely enjoyed as one of the great poets of the twentieth century in any language celebrated for his elegant formal structures, for his brilliant reanimation of myth and for his subtle treatment of erotic experience.
Lawrence Durrell has written of this masterly translation: 'Cavafy has now at last fallen upon translators who can do justice to his wry melodious poems, glinting with insight as if from veins of mica'.
|Author||C.P. Cavafy / Edmund Keeley / Phillip Sherrard|