By the houses of the living
and the houses of the dead
a small flame burns;
a door opened in the ground
releases the great blackness,
first light unfurled in the sky.

Keeper of the chambered sea,
they say that in the sea . . .
the story is widespread
though the details vary along the coast,
but the baby Ino, was a god?
out of a box from the sea.


As we came out of the mountains
the moment not day or night,
music surrounded us.

Out of the silence of the gorge
through walls of rock and air,
we walked in a tunnel of sound.

Long-song synthesised unearthly,
swirl of sea and Taygetos
shatters into goat bells.

Reforms into music of the passes,
random harmonics and goat stink
rises up to us earth song.


Running the high meadows
day and night in the skin of a lynx,
the bloody meniscus sticks.

Swallows roll in the mountain air,
pop music, something emotional, defiant
reaches into the same blue quarter.

Yannis Ritsos is free.