I speak of the last trumpet calls of the defeated soldiers
Of the rags from our holiday clothes
Of our children, selling cigarettes to passers-by
I speak of the flowers that have wilted on the graves and are rotting under the rain
Of the houses that gape, windowless, like toothless skulls
Of the girls begging, showing the wounds on their breasts
Of the barefoot mothers crawling in the debris
Of the flaming cities, the corpses piling in the streets
The pimp poets, trembling in thresholds at night
I speak of the endless nights when the light is lessened at dawn
Of the loaded tracks and the steps on wet cobblestone
I speak of the prison yards and the tears of those condemned to death.
But most of all I speak of the fishermen
Who left their nets and followed on His footsteps
And when He got tired, they did not seek rest
And when He betrayed them, they did not denounce
And when He was glorified, they averted their eyes
And their comrades spat on them and crucified them
And they, peaceful, take the road that has no end
Their gaze undarkened, unbent
Standing up and alone inside the terrible desert of the crowd.
Mikis Theodorakis, Maria Farandouri, Petros Pandis sing "I speak", 1973.
The last of the last to be written
Because future poets are no longer alive
Those who were to speak all died young
Their sad songs became birds
In another sky, where a strange sun shines
Wild rivers were born and they run into the sea
And you can't tell their waters apart
In their sad songs, a lotus sprang
so we may be born in its juices, younger.
Manolis Anagnostakis reads "These lyrics", two recordings.
-You are betraying Poetry again, you 'll say
Man's most sacred manifestation
You are using it again as a means, a beast of burden
for your dark pursuits
Being fully aware of the damage
your example does to the youth.
- Tell me what you didn't betray
You and those like you, all these years
Selling your belongings one by one
In international markets and popular fairs
Left without eyes to see, without ears
to hear, with sealed mouths, so you don't speak.
What human sacred are you charging us with?
I know. You' ll say: rhetoric and preaching again.
Well, yes! Rhetoric and preaching.
Words must be hammered like hobnails
So the wind doesn't take them away.