Tuesday, March 8, 2011

The Greek God Apollo.

In front of the Athens Academy building the statue of Apollo the lyra player.
Apollo is the Greek God of sun, fertility, prophecy, light, healing, music and poetry.

Poetry has its roots in the Greek past, it is also haunted by the penumbrae of the past.
George Seferis expresses  the tremendous weight of this accumulated "burden" of 
tradition in the following lines:
   "I woke with this marble head in my hands.
     It exhausts my elbows and I don't know where to put it down...."

It is the past that the poet tries to forget, but it is always present; a nostalgia for the " lost
glory", the "vanished world", that can never be completely exorcised.

The lure of Hellas has been celebrated not only by the Greeks, but also by a category of
Writers and travelers such as Lord Byron, Shelley and Keats came in search of the 
"haunted holy ground" and "the glory that was Greece".
And even if the words of Goethe: "Every civilized man ought in some way to be Greek..."
may sound somewhat remote today, the miracle and the magic remain very much alive.

Yannis Ritsos (1909 - 1991)

The statues left first. A little later 
the trees, people, animals. The land
became entirely desert. The wind blew.
Newspapers and thorns circled in the streets.
At dusk the lights went on by themselves.
A man came back alone, looked around him,
took out his key, stuck it in the ground
as though entrusting it to an underground hand
or as though planting a tree. Then he climbed
the marble stairs and gazed down at the city.
Cautiously, one by one, the statues returned.


  1. I made similiar picture being in Athens in 2009. Thanks for reminding me this wonderful city!

  2. That photograph is so powerful, Monika. I think about it as a symbol of life where is poetry, music, love, hopes and dreams.

    Sky is amazing in this image also. Marvelous photograph and great composition!!!!! I love this image very much.

    And I discovered another great poet Yannis Ritsos.

    I reread his poem a few times. I love it's beauty and strangeness. I thought that sometimes we are so busy that we even don't notice many things we take for granted like trees and dusk. What would happen if they abandon us and never would return. I love this poet very much and i am going to buy one his books.

    A warm hug to you Monika!!!!!!!!

  3. I love poetry and lament the fact that its popularity has waned. One of my favorite poets is Madison Cawein (1865-1914). Of the poet, he wrote:

    Unseen, yet seen, on heights of visions,
    Above all praise and world derisions,
    His spirit and his deathless brood
    Of dreams fare on, a multitude,
    While on the pillar of great missions
    His name and place are granite-hewed.

  4. super schönes bild vom schönen apollo.
    und so ein toller blauer himmel.
    aber deine möven sind erstklassig.
    ich bin dieses jahr im sommer auf einer griechischen insel und freu mich schon.
    liebsten gruß

  5. Γι αυτό είμαστε περήφανοι οι Έλληνες !!!
    Σ ευχαριστώ γι αυτήν την ανάρτηση !

  6. Eine phantastische Kultur und ein schönes Bild vom Apollo.
    LG Sabine

  7. Great images and wonderful words Monika.

  8. man kann nur hoffen, dass viele hinhören werden, wenn er spielt. gutes bild ! den mittwoch schön dir.

    daily athens

  9. How Apollonian!

    Aloha from Hawaii

    Comfort Spiral



  10. Monika! I always loved the greek good.. apollo venere giunone ecc..
    you are very lucky to live there!

  11. Πολύ όμορφος
    Φιλιά πολλά γλυκιά μου

  12. @Ola.
    Sometimes Athens can be charming. Maybe in August
    when the city is empty..

    Yes, Yiannis Ritsos and Odysseas Elytis are my
    favorite poets in Greek.
    My hug is warm also from Athens today with snow!

    Only very few people are reading poetry.
    The world lives in such a hurry.
    Thank you for sending me this poem!

    Ich freue mich mit dir.
    Die griechischen Inseln sind alle einmalig..
    Gruss von mir!

    Δεν ξέρω εάν οι Έλληνες εκτιμούν την
    κληρονομιά τους..
    Πολλά Φιλιά!!!

    Danke für deinen Besuch. Ich freue mich immer,
    von dir zu hören..

    Thank you very much!

    Das glaube ich kaum!
    Dir auch einen schönen Mittwoch.

    Hello and thank you!

    @nouvelles couleurs.
    Thank you very much, dear Laura..
    Lucky to live in Athens? It depends on many things..

  13. @D.Angel.
    Σου στέλνω τα φιλιά μου,
    αγαπητό μου κορίτσι!!
    Σαν τον Απόλλωνα δεν υπάρχει
    άλλη ομορφιά!!

  14. Liebe Monika,

    kicher, den hätt ich auch nicht von der Bettkante geschubbst...

    Knuddels, deine Rachelako

  15. This is a great post together with the beautiful picture of Apollo! My compliments dear friend Monika.

  16. Let's hope that the statues will return to Greece once more together with the past glory!

    optimistic post! well done

  17. Monika, this is a wonderful tribute to Apollo, in word and image. Excellent photograph, as a god should be seen, from below with a clear sky above! And that poem is beautiful! To me it says that as long as one good person holds the old desire and respect for love, truth and beauty in their hearts, art and culture and humanity can never vanish. Many thanks!

  18. A good perspective, color and contrast.
    Nice one

  19. Τον οραματίστηκα σαν τον Μάρτη...

    θεϊκά απρόσιτο,
    και πεισματικά ενοχοποιητικό προς την κατοχή τόσης Ομορφιας....

    να είναι αιφνίδια Εναλλασσόμενος με έναν Ψυχισμό διαδοχικής αΣυνέχειας...

    τι λεω, ε???


    Τους ΘΕΟΥΣ τους φτιάξαμε να εξυπηρετούντις αναγκες μας..

    κι εγω ΕΤΣΙ τον θελω τον ΘΕΟ ΜΟΥ!!!


  20. So hast Du meinen ehemaligen Geliebten sehr gut getroffen!

    Ave und Salve

  21. Rachelako.
    Da hast du meine Gedanken erraten (grins) :-)

    Apollo in my mind..
    Thank you!

    The hope is always alive, that the Greek Marbles
    from London are coming back where they belong..

    Two Tigers.
    A tribute to Apollo and the city of Athens from
    another aspect..
    Thank you for your wonderful words!

    Fabio Martins.
    Thank you for stopping by!

    Αν σου κάνει αυτός ο ωραίος Απόλλωνας… :)
    Σου στέλνω πολλά φιλιά!!! (¨εστω)..

    Gratuliere zu einem phantastischen und schönen
    Geliebten. (Schade zum ehemaligen)!!!

  22. It's good your photos are back! Wonderful photo! I wish I too had a lyra and knew how to play it! :-)

  23. Great angle, Monika!
    Well done!! :)

    Ritsos is one of my favourite poets... of all-time.
    Thanks for posting this.

    Have a wonderul weekend, dearest!

    Big hugs and kisses
    B xx

  24. Heliotypon.
    Cautiously, one by one the photos returned..

  25. Betty.
    There are so many great Greek poets..
    Send you my love!

  26. Süüüße,

    in meinem Dashboard bist du mit *test* angezeigt, die Seite geht aber nicht auf, weißt du, wo die Miez drauf ist...
    Oder bin ich zu blöd, lach...

    drückerle, Rachel

  27. Wow.. thanks for a wonderful post...
    Have a good weekend...

  28. The sense of history and past glory is what attracted me to Greece, and specifically Rodos, last year. I was not disappointed !

  29. Very nice perspective. The colors are amazing

  30. wonderfull, Monika, the foto is very nice too, a beautifull contrast!

  31. liebe Monika, alles sehr fein deine Worte und Gedanken,
    nun sind die Gedanken bei den vielen
    gebrochene Seelen, die Menschen haben Heimat, ihre Kindheit ihr Liebstes alles verloren, und das „von einem Tag zum anderen“
    aber mit unseren ♥ ♥ ♥ Herzen sehr nahe es betrifft uns alle…
    liebe Grüße Jasmin

  32. I love mythology a lot. The photo is just awesome! Great post......

  33. Great contrast.....wonderful photo Monika.

    greetings from Holland, Joop