Kostas Karyotakis

(1896-1928 / Greece)

Ballade to the Forgotten Poets of the Ages


Detested by both men and gods,
like nobles who have bitterly decayed,
the Verlaines wither; wealth remains
to them, of rich and silvery rhyme.
With 'Les Chatiments' the Hugos are intoxicated
by their terrible Olympian revenge.
But I shall write a sorrowful
ballade to the forgotten poets.

Though the Poes have lived in misery,
and though the Baudelaires have suffered living deaths,
they ve all been granted Immortality.
Yet no-one now remembers,
and the deepest darkness has completely buried,
every poetaster who produced limp poetry.
But I make as an offering this reverent
ballade to the forgotten poets.

The world's disdain is heaped on them,
but they pass by, unyielding, pallid,
sacrifices to the tragic fraud that
out there somewhere Glory waits for them,
that wise and merry virgin.
But knowing that they re all due for oblivion,
I weep nostalgically this sorrowful
ballade to the forgotten poets.

And off in some far future epoch:
'What forgotten poet' I should like it to be asked
'has written such a beggarly
ballade to the forgotten poets?'

Submitted: Friday, September 17, 2010

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Comments about this poem (Ballade to the Forgotten Poets of the Ages by Kostas Karyotakis )

  • Bronze Star - 2,188 Points John Richter (1/6/2015 11:51:00 AM)

    I like how he adds himself to the legion of forgotten poets. And oh how true it is that we sacrifice ourselves to the glorious fraud that somehow future glory awaits our scribbles. By searching just now I discovered that there is a difference between the ballad and ballade forms.... Learn something everyday. Of course at my age I'll forget it by tomorrow.... Nice thoughtful poem, though I'll say the author may have been a bit pessimistic.... (Report) Reply

  • Freshman - 1,020 Points Peter Stavropoulos (1/6/2014 3:48:00 PM)

    Apposite poem for PoemHunter. A 'ballade to the forgotten poets', I'm with them. (Report) Reply

  • Gold Star - 10,543 Points * Sunprincess * (1/6/2014 12:29:00 AM)

    ....maybe some poets will be like Robert frost and not be forgotten...

    ~And off in some far future epoch:
    'What forgotten poet' I should like it to be asked
    'has written such a beggarly
    ballade to the forgotten poets? '~ (Report) Reply

Read all 3 comments »

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