This city…

29 Aug

I have been thinking a lot about moving recently. Finding myself graduated and still living in the city where I grew up, I’ve been questionning if there isn’t somewhere else I ‘should’ be. I’ve done a lot of travelling and have always enjoyed the thrill of discovering somewhere new. However moving back home a year ago, rather than taking up the offer of a teaching post abroad, has probably been the best decision I ever made. I have properly reconnected with old friends, come to really appreciate the support of my family and faced up to a few demons. I think now I’m ready to see somewhere new again, but this poem serves as a good antidote to the ‘grass is always greener’ mindset that we’re all prone to sometimes. That said I am off for a week’s sunshine in a few days and I can’t wait!

THE CITY
by Constantine P. Cavafy

You said: ‘I’ll go to another country, go to another shore,
find another city better than this one.
Whatever I try to do is fated to turn out wrong
and my heart -like something dead – lies buried.
How long can I let my mind moulder in this place?
Wherever I turn, wherever I look,
I see the black ruins of my life, here,
where I’ve spent so many years, wasted them, destroyed them totally.’

You won’t find a new country, won’t fin another shore.
This city will always pursue you.
You’ll walk the same streets, grow old
in the same neighbourhoods, turn grey in these same houses.
You’ll always end up in this city. Don’t hope for things elsewhere:
there’s no ship for you, no road.
Now that you’ve wasted your life here, in this small corner,
you’ve destroyed it everywhere in the world.

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2 Responses to “This city…”

  1. short poems August 30, 2010 at 08:40 #

    Lovely creative writing 🙂

  2. Olivia September 8, 2010 at 19:20 #

    Very meaningful..

    Lovely portrayal of real life situations.. Intense..

    Olivia

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