Fani Papageorgiou was born in Athens in 1975. Her Greek book Zero and One (To Miden kai to Ena, Kastantiotis Publications, Athens 2000) won the Maria Rally award for first novel. Her poems have appeared in magazines and literary journals in the US where she was nominated for a Pushcart Prize, in the UK where she was a finalist for the 2009 MsLexia Women’s Poetry Competition and in Australia.
Her first collection of poems When You Said No, Did You Mean Never? will be published by Shearsman in England at the end of 2012.
This could be everything, I tell myself
Sitting on a bench, staring at the china blue sea
A small, sad feeling in my chest heavier than a carpet
Seagulls flying around me— wings beating in reverse thrust.
Democritus of Abdera tore his eyes out in a garden so that the spectacle of reality would not distract him.
No one is ever satisfied with his lot, my mother used to say,
but life should be easy to read.
Peel, core and slice three apples. Bake in a hot oven for half an hour.
Here is the church, and here is the steeple
Open the doors, and here are the people.
They are walking up and down
Pushing strollers, holding hands.
Let us know how you get along, they write.
I am reading Melville’s letters, I reply.
Then the quiet knowing that meditation and water are wedded forever.
One day you wake up and you know it’s time to turn your life around
suddenly it’s like listening to a recording of your own voice for the first time
and you think my God, how strange it sounds
but you know that this is you.
For other contributions by Fani Papageorgiou, please follow the links below:
Poetry in this post: © Fani Papageorgiou
Published with the permission of Fani Papageorgiou