Angeliki Korre lives in Athens. She’s a book editor, translator, and poet.
She has published two poetry collections, “o Monokeros kai i Psychosi” (The Unicorn and the Psychosis, 2012) and “Maesta” (2016).
Translated by Angeliki Korre
SOCKS / Κάλτσες
Colorful and black and white socks,
superannuated socks with holes,
teenage socks with their tag,
immigrant socks from Bangladesh with a residence permit,
socks that have lost their significant other,
lost, homeless pairs that lay on the dirt,
while others make a career as sock-puppets.
Torn-up stockings on the brothel floor,
children’s socks with light blue stars,
baggy socks on robbers’ heads,
wet ones, dry ones,
socks tucked into people’s throats to stop them from talking…
Enough with politics; let’s choose a lighter topic,
like socks, for example.
THE CHILD SPEAKS / Το παιδί μιλάει
Mother is absent since the morning. She took her misery
to the seamstress, to add some lining so as not to be visible.
Father is routing in the cracks of the furniture for coins.
He yearns to hear his wealth resonating throughout the church as he
inserts them into the donation box.
It’s dark already and I can hear them swearing at each other.
I hid in the closet as usual
—not because I’m scared—
but in order to find myself
a darkness in my size.
THREE WORDS / Τρεις λέξεις
The word Freedom
He noted it on a piece of paper, he crumpled the piece of paper
in the inner pocket. He passed a hanger in the coat,
from one end of the shoulder to the other,
and wrapped it in a plastic bag.
The word Justice
Was painted all over his old, student shoes.
He washed them at ninety degrees and then got rid of them
In a cardboard box.
The word Solidarity
Had been knitted by his grandmother in a woolen scarf.
He has now developed an allergy to both.
This is how wardrobes end up filled with unwanted
AGE FOR CRUCUFIXION / Σε ηλικία σταύρωσης
At the age of twelve
we would move uncomplainingly
within the frame.
we would assume that we were out of the prison;
but, unfortunately, adulthood was just its yard.
Now, at thirty-three,
I comprehend the symbolism of religion
into which they baptize me;
those who didn’t have time to obey
have reach the age for crucifixion.
EXTRACT OF WESTERN CIVILIZATION / Απόσπασμα δυτικού πολιτισμού
In a fair world, for every church of St. George, there would be built a marble tomb as well, in the memory of the dragon. Anyone who emerged in this world through the darkness gets me. After that, we choose what we can compromise on, what we can’t, and then we dress accordingly. There is no solace, only anticipation; coffee, newspapers, cigarettes, and orgasms.
In the crowded squares, one can encounter a ridiculous takeoff of Rage carrying around its sad flesh from table to table—every gaggle keeps an empty chair lest it appear. This is the way our actions ended up being more useless than their theoretical backround. On the other hand, the most loathsome of the loathsome ones among us don’t speak. They only pose smiling, sometimes even with one of their feet on the carcass of a wild animal, which even them when they were kids were dreaming of touching its pulses.
There are not many things we know how to do, replacing a damage wheel, for example, or frying potatoes. But that we do know—and we know it well— is to tell the time.
Soon, time will be a quarter ‘till Boredom. Unless the watch is connected to an explosive device.