Patras World Poetry Festival 2021

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4th “Patras World Poetry Festival 2021

13th - 19th of December


This year, the 4th “Patras World Poetry Festival” boasts a variety of original literary events taking place between the 13th and 19th of December 2021, hosting a total of 70 poets from 20 different countries.

The occasion of a calendar year combining on one hand the memory of the Greek people’s fight for freedom, and on the other hand the contemporary experience of confinement, led us to this year’s thematic center: “CONFINEMENT-FREEDOM-HUMAN REVOLUTIONS”. We bring novel aims and ideas, along with a greater and more essential need for expression, synergy and communication.

For 2021, the festival’s programme will be extended from 4 days to 7, hosting a multitude of events for audiences and participants both Greek and foreign, raising the bar and aiming to establish a tradition of cultural celebration.

This year too, for its most part, the Festival will be held online, a blended programme combining physical and online activities as adjusted to Covid-19 regulations, in a shifting terrain of cultural events during the pandemic.

The events of the week’s programme will take place in three (3) different places in Patras, each one of them a space for hosting cultural events. The events will be broadcasted ONLINE on the website including both main and side events:

Main Events:

  • 15th-18th December 2021

Five (5) Online Poetry Meetings including Readings and Roundtables: There will be lecterns where the guest poets will be presented; their works will be read (in 2 languages). The guest poets will also participate in the roundtables and discuss topics revolving around poetry and criticism.

  • 18th December 2021

Online Award Ceremony for the Greek “Jean Moréas” Poetry Award for 2021: The annual ceremony for the “Jean Moréas” Awards for Greek poetic art and production in its entire spectrum.

  • 16th December 2021

Newcomer Poet Marathon: A night of presentations and readings of new poets, combining physical and online presence.

Parallel Events: (11th -19th of December 2021)

  • Festival Anthology: Limited trilingual book edition plus eBook.
  • Online shows:
  • #meet_the_poets: tributes and interviews online at the channel.
  • #videopoetry: presentation of video-poetry online.
  • Poetry Set to Singing: music radio tributes to poetry set to singing.
  • Exhibitions:
  • Poetry exhibition: presenting the works of poetry
  • Book exhibition of Newcomer Poets: presenting poetry collection books from new poets; participation from established poets and publishing houses.
  • Poetry Alley: Presentation of poets and poems (the ones participating in the festival) on a central pedestrian precinct of Patras.

During both the physical and the online events, there will be participation from internationally acclaimed academics, novelists, critics, and representatives of institutions.

The Patras World Poetry Festival 2021 is organized by the “Grafeion Poiiseos” Poetry Foundation, the literary website Culture Book (, while it is annually held under the auspices of the Ministry of Culture and the Ministry of Tourism*. The festival’s events are supported by the Greek Library of London, the University of Western Macedonia, the Hellenic Open University and many other esteemed institutions, since the festival takes place under the aegis of the Hellenic Republic’s President.

The Patras World Poetry Festival is one of the largest literary institutions in Greece, certainly the largest of its whole region, and it has already drawn attention amongst esteemed festivals internationally. Every year, the city of Patras hosts important figures of world literature and offers a richness of events, including poetry readings, seminars and cultural activities. The festival’s vision is to promote Greek literary expression worldwide and turn this capital of Western Greece into a European center for literary studies. Through its actions, the festival communicates with various departments of Greek literary studies all over the world and it chronicles contemporary poetic expression.

A detailed programme will soon be posted on the festival’s website


On behalf of the Scholarly Representatives

Kotopoulos H. Triantafyllos

Chair of the “Patras World Poetry Festival”

Skiathas D. Antonis

Chair of the “Grafeion Poiiseos” Poetry Fountation



Maria Alaniadi


Archival content available on 

Andrés Sánchez Robayna, Spain


Andrés Sánchez Robayna, Spain

The Poems



PASSING once more are the white clouds
in a time when there's no time. This is one hour
of time and it's your body and it's the waters
glistening under the sun of memory.

(translate: Manos Apostolidis)




ΠΕΡΝΟΥΝ μια φορά ακόμη τα λευκά σύννεφα
σ' έναν χρόνο δίχως χρόνο. Είναι μια ώρα
του χρόνου κι είναι το κορμί σου κι είναι τα νερά
που λάμπουν κάτω απ' τον ήλιο της μνήμης.





PASAN una vez más las nubes blancas
en un tiempo sin tiempo. Es una hora
del tiempo y es tu cuerpo y son las aguas
que brillan bajo el sol de la memoria.

* * * 


NOTHING foreshadowed it. Or maybe it was only,
in the air, a pulse
that faded, slowly, slowly, merging with us?

We had wandered that entire day,
blinded, around the island,
an earth surrendered to the naked skies,
under the ash gray sun.
Later walking in the city,
on scorching pavements, we saw, between two streets,
gravestones scattered, remains of an old seaman
graveyard, the remembrance that surfaced
among living and dead, with no transition at all,
us on that side of the earth,
them already complete, century
VIII B.C., on the now half-faded
inscription. The extinct,
the unsolved, maybe,
it was there, in the light.
We made our way back absorbed,
later, in our veering steps,
on streets whose layout was like scribblings
designed nonchalantly by an absent-minded god.

Few hours later, we sought a place
to dine, hungry.
Still very close to that place, by the seashore,
on a humble plank,
were the three of us, when the light of day
had now moved away towards a place lost
in time. Delicate waves
broke on the sands, and there on the other side, another island
raising in the dark its vague outline.

It happened without warning, without a single sign.

A sort of peace blanketed everything, a form, close,
of harmony, or at least a form
of that which we call so. The finite,
as if brimming over the cup of all things visible,
embraced us, and time,
like the ceaseless waving, was filtered through
the black sand, through the imperishable.

Must I conclude, then, that it was harmony,
perfection, or beauty, or bliss?
I know not why I must now comprehend,
if that won't offer me today the feeling
offered me by ignorance that night,
if this embracing was beyond
this feeling, a drop, only,
of eternity, filtered through time.

Years have passed since
all that, today only a shadow remains,
a remembrance which lies amidst the dark,
almost ignored after all, as in ignorance
we think of the light up there, as incomprehensible.

(translate: Manos Apostolidis)



ΤΙΠΟΤΑ δεν το προμήνυε. Ή ίσως ήταν μονάχα,
στον αέρα, ένας παλμός
που έσβησε, σιγά σιγά, σμίγοντας μαζί μας;

Είχαμε περιπλανηθεί ολάκερη τη μέρα,
τυφλωμένοι, στο νησί,
μια γη παραδομένη στους γυμνούς ουρανούς,
κάτω απ΄ τον σταχτί ήλιο.
Περπατώντας ύστερα στην πόλη,
σε πεζοδρόμια που ζεμάταγαν, είδαμε, ανάμεσα σε δυο δρόμους,
μνήματα σκόρπια, απομεινάρια ενός παλιού ναυτικού
νεκροταφείου, τη μνήμη που αναδυόταν
ανάμεσα σε ζωντανούς και νεκρούς, δίχως μετάβαση καμία,
εμείς σ΄ αυτήν την πλευρά της γης,
εκείνοι ήδη περατωμένοι, αιώνας
VIII π.Χ., στη μισοσβησμένη πια
επιγραφή. Το αφανισμένο,
το ανεξιχνίαστο, ίσως,
βρισκόταν εκεί, στο φως.
Επιστρέψαμε απορροφημένοι,
αργότερα, στα ξεστρατισμένα μας βήματα,
σε δρόμους που η διαρρύθμισή τους ήταν λες ορνιθοσκαλίσματα
σχεδιασμένα ανέμελα από έναν αφηρημένο θεό.

Μερικές ώρες μετά, γυρέψαμε ένα μέρος
να δειπνήσουμε, πεινασμένοι.
Πολύ κοντά ακόμη σ' εκείνον τον τόπο, πλάι στην ακρογιαλιά,
πάνω σε μια φτωχική τάβλα,
βρισκόμασταν οι τρεις, όταν το φως της μέρας
είχε πια απομακρυνθεί προς ένα μέρος χαμένο
απ' το χρόνο. Ανάλαφρα κύματα
έσκαγαν στην άμμο, κι εκεί απέναντι, άλλο νησί
ύψωνε στο σκοτάδι τη θαμπή φιγούρα του.

Συνέβη δίχως προειδοποίηση, δίχως ένα σημάδι.

Μια γαλήνη σκέπασε τα πάντα, μια μορφή, κοντινή,
αρμονίας, ή τουλάχιστον μια μορφή
αυτού που έτσι ονομάζουμε. Το πεπερασμένο,
ξεχειλίζοντας λες το ποτήρι όλων των ορατών,
μας αγκάλιασε, κι ο χρόνος,
όπως ο αδιάκοπος κυματισμός, φιλτραρίστηκε
στη μαύρη άμμο, στο αναλλοίωτο.

Πρέπει να καταλάβω, λοιπόν, πως ήταν αρμονία,
τελειότητα, ή ομορφιά, ή ευδαιμονία;
Δεν ξέρω τώρα γιατί πρέπει να κατανοήσω,
αν αυτό δεν μπορεί να μου δώσει σήμερα την αίσθηση
που μου έδωσε η άγνοια εκείνη τη νύχτα,
αν εκείνος ο εναγκαλισμός ήταν πιο πέρα
απ΄ την αίσθηση, μια σταγόνα, μονάχα,
αιωνιότητας, φιλτραρισμένη απ΄ το χρόνο.

Έχουν περάσει πια χρόνια
απ΄ όλα αυτά, σήμερα μένει μονάχα μια σκιά,
μια θύμηση που κείται καταμεσής της σκοτεινιάς,
σχεδόν αγνοημένη τελικά, όπως στην άγνοια
νοιώθουμε εκεί πάνω το φως, ακατανόητο.




NADA lo hacía presentir. ¿O quizás era sólo,
en el aire, un latido
que se fue, poco a poco, aunando con nosotros?

Habíamos vagado todo el día,
cegados, por la isla,
una tierra entregada a los cielos desnudos,
bajo el sol ceniciento.
Caminando después por la ciudad,
por aceras que ardían, vimos, entre dos calles,
tumbas dispersas, restos de un viejo cementerio
marino, la memoria que se alzaba
entre vivos y muertos, sin transición alguna,
nosotros a este lado de la tierra,
ellos ya consumados, siglo
VIII a.C., en la inscripción ya casi
borrada. Lo extinguido,
lo insondable, tal vez,
estaba allí, en la luz.
Regresamos absortos,
más tarde, a nuestros pasos extraviados,
a calles cuyo plano era el de un garabato
trazado alegremente por un dios distraído.

Unas horas después, buscamos algún sitio
donde cenar, hambrientos.
Muy cerca aún de allí, junto a la playa,
sobre un tablado pobre,
estábamos los tres, cuando la luz del día
se había ya alejado hacia un lugar perdido
del tiempo. Leves olas
batían en la arena, y allá enfrente, otra isla
levantaba en la noche su silueta brumosa.

Sucedió sin aviso, sin un signo.

Una paz cubrió todo, una forma, cercana,
de la armonía, o al menos una forma
de lo que así llamamos. Lo finito,
como colmando el vaso de todo lo visible,
nos abrazó, y el tiempo,
igual que el oleaje perpetuo, se filtró
en las arenas negras, en lo imperecedero.

¿Debo entender, así, que era armonía,
perfección, o belleza, o beatitud?
No sé ahora por qué he de comprender,
si eso no puede darme hoy el sentido
que me dio la ignorancia aquella noche,
si aquel abrazo estaba más allá
del sentido, una gota, solamente,
de eternidad filtrada por el tiempo.

Hace ya muchos años
de todo esto, hoy es sólo una sombra,
un recuerdo que yace en mitad de lo oscuro,
casi ignorado al fin, igual que en la ignorancia
sentimos allá arriba la luz, incomprensible.

The Poet

Andrés Sánchez Robayna (Las Palmas, 1952) is a poet and essayist. He studied university in Barcelona. He is currently a professor of Spanish literature at the University of La Laguna (Tenerife). He founded and directed the magazine Syntaxis (1983-1993) and the Literary Translation Workshop. His poetic work, begun in 1970, is collected in the volume En el cuerpo del mundo (2004), which has been followed by La sombra y la apariencia (2010) and Por el gran mar (2019). His most recent essay books include Cuaderno de las Islas (2011), Variaciones sobre el vaso de agua (2015), New Gongorian Questions (2018) and Jorge Oramas o El tiempo suspendido (2018). He has translated to the Spanish, among others, William Wordsworth, Wallace Stevens and Paul Valéry. He received the National Critics Prize for his book of poems La roca (1984) and the National Prize for Translation

Penelope Zardoukα, Greece
Βραβεία Jean Moréas 2021 - Βραχείες λίστες


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