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Sunday, 20 November 2011

Yannis Ritsos: In the Depths


Nude female figure, bronze and gold, from Uluburun shipwreck, Late Bronze Age, ca. 1300 B.C.: photo by Tillman, 23 December 2008 (Bodrum Museum of Underwater Archaeology, Turkey)

He saw the diver stir deep down in the water
with soft, carnal movements. Beyond
he saw the clay penis and the statue's feet
stepping firmly on the sea floor. And he also saw
the clay woman spread out, waiting,
one knee slightly raised, with a red,
totally red fish on her belly. Except
that the seaweed didn't move, there was no seaweed,
and the coin they threw in from above descended slowly
until it stopped a hand's width from the woman's mouth.


A maritime archaeologist working with LAMP (Lighthouse Archaeological Maritime Program) documenting a large bronze ship's bell from the late 18th century "Storm Wreck," a colonial sailing vessel that was lost offshore St. Augustine, Florida: photo by Brendan Burke, 17 December 2010


The underwater formation or ruin called "The Turtle" at Yonaguni, Ryukyu Islands: photo by Masahiro Kaji, 8 February 2008


Redfish (Sebastes marinus)
: photo by Steven G. Johnson, December 2006

File:Moneda púnica.jpg

Punic coin, Sicilian mint, c. fourth century B.C., at ARQUA Museo Nacional de Arqueología Submarina (National Museum of Underwater Archaeology), Cartagena (Murcia), Spain: photo by Nanosanchez, March 2009

Yannis Ritsos: In the Depths, 1971, from The Wall Inside the Mirror, 1974, in Exile and Return: Selected Poems 1967-1974, translated by Edmund Keeley, 1985

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