The following poem is by one of Greece's major Modern Greek poets, Nikephoros Vrettakos (1912-1991). The English translation is by Athan Anagnostopoulos.
Ὅπως ἡ μέλισσα γύρω ἀπό ἕνα ἄγριο
λουλούδι, ὅμοια κι ἐγώ. Τριγυρίζω
διαρκῶς γύρω ἀπ´τή λέξη.
Εὐχαριστῶ τίς μακριές σειρές
τῶν προγόνων, πού δούλεψαν τή φωνή,
τήν τεμάχισαν σέ κρίκους, τή κάμαν
νοήματα τή σφυρηλάτησαν ὅπως
τό χρυσάφι οἱ μεταλλουργοί κι ἔγινε
Ὅμηροι, Αἰσχύλοι, Εὐαγγέλια
κι ἄλλα κοσμήματα.
Μέ τό νήμα
αὐτόν τό χρυσό
τοῦ χρυσοῦ πού βγαίνει ἀπ´τά βάθη
τῆς καρδιᾶς μου, συνδέομαι, συμμετέχω
Εἶπα καί ἔγραψα "Άγαπῶ."
Just as the honey-bee flies around a wild
flower, so do I. I wander
continually around the word.
I thank the long ranks
of ancestors who worked in the voice,
cut it into loops, turned it
into meanings, forged it, the way
metal workers forge gold, and it became
Homeroi, Aeschyloi, Gospels
and other jewels.
With the thread
of words, this gold
of gold that rises from the depths
of my heart, I relate, partake
to the world!
I said and wrote, "I Love."
News and Events
See Notes on Greek Culture from the Greek Institute on:
Click here to view The Greek Institute's Chronology of Programs
November 28 - Cycle II of the Greek Language classes begins
New offering: ΜΑθΗΣΙΣ -Mathesis: Ancient and Modern Greek classes for high school students (see description in course listings).
See course listings.
December 22, 8pm at the First Church in Cambridge (11 Garden Street, Cambridge, Mass.): Byzantine Christmas: A concert of Byzantine chant and Greek Folk carols with instrumental accompaniment and readings from Christmas stories. Director Dr. Spyridon Antonopolous with the Psaltikon Choir. Tickets are $12 in advance or $15 at the door for students; $22 in advance, $25 at the door for general admission.
February 13, 2017, 7pm - Dr. Bertsekas, "Aeschylus' Oresteia: From vendetta and retribution to civil institutions and community strength: a talk in two parts." Further details TBA.
Spring 2017, Date TBA - Art Music inspired by Demotic Songs: the folk songs from various regions of Greece followed by a performance of original compositions by Jimmy Kachulis, composer and faculty of Berklee College of Music. The performance of Greek folk songs will feature Vasilis Kostas, laouto, and vocalist Eirini Tornesaki.
A glimpse of some of the embroideries and costumes the family of Doreen Canaday Spitzer (1914-2010), well known American Philhellene, recently donated to the Greek Institute.
On her first visit to Greece, Doreen Canaday wrote to her cousin, "I have seen the Parthenon in full moonlight, have seen Sophocles' Electra in the Odeon of Herodes Atticus...I have got lost, almost, on the slopes of Hymettus, of honey fame, and seen such sunsets and sunrises as people only dream of. Sometimes I can't believe it's really true..."
View the embroideries