Dr. Kostas Myrsiades, professor of Comparative Literature at West Chester University, is a distinguished translator and neohellenist and the first American to receive the Gold Medallion (1995) for his translations from the Hellenic Society of Translators of Literature given annually by the Greek government to a scholar from any country.
His work in Greek letters is not only demonstrated in his 19 published books and numerous articles on modern and ancient Greek literature but also in the many invited lectures he has delivered for such groups as the Jane Globus Seminar Series Lecture at Baruch College, the Elytis Chair Lecture Series of Poetry and Neohellenic Studies at Rutgers, and the Embassy of Greece/National Library of Canada Lecture at Ottawa.
He is the editor of College Literature, a quarterly of literary criticism, theory, and pedagogy, which since 1990 has been the recipient of eight awards from the Council of Editors of Learned Journals including the Phoenix Award for distinguished editorial achievement. Professor Myrsiades also co-edits the Journal of the Hellenic Diaspora, one of the leading journals in neohellenic studies.
ODYSSEUS AND PENELOPE SECRETELY
PLOT AGAINST THE SUITORS
And may the gods accomplish your desire:
“Stranger,” she said
“I shall decree a contest on this day.
One arrow must each suitor whip through twelve ax heads;
something only my lord can do.”
The beggar relaxed his eyes.
“Let there be no postponement of this trial.
Death to the suitors, lady, not one will escape his doom.”
Their gazes touched once again
Saints rarely toil.
They loaf in solitude
Once each year a priest arrives
(to piss behind the chapel wall).
The saints in their wooden casings
Only the droning of the rain
On the village square,
From the cafes
(FOR MY FATHER)
He rides his donkey up and down,
Poetry in this post: © Kostas Myrsiades
From: Others Must Dance for the Lord Dionysus Now
a Poetic Memoir by KOSTAS MYRSIADES,
Pella Publishing Company, Inc. New York 1993
Published with the permission of Kostas Myrsiades