Ranka

Poems

by Apostolos N. Athanassakis

“Direct and free of inane conceit, this book of poems by Apostolos Athanassakis is a slice of life. Literary allusions and experiences with diverse traditions show a poignant awareness of the ultimate oneness of man. A Greek poet in his own right and a classical scholar of great breadth, Athanassakis shows new versatility by producing a book of poems in English. A profound experience in distant Iceland becomes the springboard for diving into a pool of powerful emotions, out of which emerges some highly original, passionate but deftly controlled verse. This is not a cerebral exercise in versification but a record of poetic truth.”

—Jorge de Sena
Professor of Comparative Literature, Holder of the International Poetry Prize Etna-Taormina 1977
“The conflict in these poems is not new. The outlandish Ranka, the poet’s Calypso, tempts him to the limits with a love unsanctioned by human convention. The conflict though exists only because his Penelope is both lovable and virtuous (she has no thief’s eyes) and so the yearning for the return to Ithaca smolders no less than the desire to remain the captive of an enchantress. The verse is permeated by a tense interplay of great tenderness with sarcasm, anger, and irony. Yet. what emerges at the end is a composition, a new opus on a very old theme. And those who feel with the poet that love cannot be kept prisoner will be touched by his passion, his transcending passion.”

—Regina Pagoulatou
Apostolos N. Athanassakis, Professor of Classics at the University of California, Santa Barbara, was born at Astrochorion, Arta, Greece in 1938. He has published numerous articles in philological journals, chiefly on Homer and Hesiod.

ISBN 0-918618-14-2    64 pp    $8.00    Qty: