Cavafy: That dead café where they used to go together

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...When he went to the café that evening—
he happened to have some vital business there—
to that same café where they used to go together,
it was a knife in his heart,
that dead café where they used to go together.

Constantine Cavafy (1863–1933), Greek from Alexandria, Egypt. Poem "Lovely White Flowers" (Ωραία λουλούδια και άσπρα ως ταίριαζαν πολύ) from C.P. Cavafy: Collected Poems (1975), translated by Edmund Keeley and Philip Sherrard

Όταν το βράδυ επήγεν — έτυχε μια δουλειά,
μια ανάγκη του ψωμιού του — στο καφενείον όπου
επήγαιναν μαζύ: — μαχαίρι στην καρδιά του
το μαύρο καφενείο — όπου επήγαιναν μαζύ.

 

Photo by Kimmo Räisänen


Francis Quarles: Nature's bills

256

The world's an inn;
and I her guest.
I eat; I drink; I take my rest.
My hostess, nature, does deny me
nothing, wherewith she can supply me;
where, having stayed a while, I pay
her lavish bills, and go my way.

    --Francis Quarles (1592-1644). One of his many descendants (he had 18 children) was the American poet, Langston Hughes.