The City (excerpt)

The City (excerpt)

There’s no new land, my friend, no
New sea; for the city will follow you,
In the same streets you’ll wander endlessly,
The same mental suburbs slip from youth to age,
In the same house go white at last-
The city is a cage.
No other places, always this
Your earthly landfall, and no ship exists
To take you from yourself. Ah! don’t you see
Just as you’ve ruined your life in this
One plot of ground you’ve ruined its worth
Everywhere now-over the whole earth?

— C.P. Cavafy, from Justine (translation by Lawrence Durrell)

This poem is offered as part of our September theme: Epic Poetry

T. S. Poetry

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