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 

Barbara Pogačnik, Slovenia


Barbara Pogačnik, Slovenia

The Poems


Suddenly, I see a fish behind the wheel
of a tram coming towards me. Instantly
I find myself in the driver's seat
of my red and green tram.
The rusty wheels gurgle brightly,
as does the water under the sun;
cats of all patterns slink along the tracks.
The fish in the passing tram
keeps gasping, swirling circles
in its gaping mouth. Grey spirals, all of its
speech, are sucked up
from prehuman roots. Trees lift
one root at a time; roots flow
along the tram's side.

With an electric flash when passing by, the fish and I greet
each other like brother and sister
and, in a glance, the scene is over.
I'll never find out
if I have the fish bubble in the mouth myself.

In the blinding sun
a tail disappears,
the tail of a cat
lurking for fish.
Currently, there's no tram in town.

(Translated by Julija Potrč & Anthony McCann)



V nasproti vozečem tramvaju
za krmilom nenadoma
zagledam ribo. V istem hipu
se znajdem na šoferskem mestu
rdeče-zelenega tramvaja še sama.
Zarjavela kolesa tesnobno klokotajo,
tok napeljav bliska kot voda pod soncem.
Mački vseh barv se smukajo prek tirov.
Riba, ki mi vozi nasproti, široko
odpira usta, v katerih se vrtinčijo
krogi. Te sive spirale so ves njen govor
ki ga srka iz svoje predčloveške
korenine. Drevesa vzdigujejo
po eno korenino, ki zaplapola
ob boku tramvaja.

Z ribo se ob električnem blesku pozdraviva
kot brat in sestra
in že je ves prizor mimo.
Nikoli ne bom izvedela,
ali imam ribji balon v ustih tudi jaz.

V mojem življenju zdaj
skozi barvo dnevne svetlobe
izginja rep mačke, ki je prežala na ribo,
in tramvaja trenutno ni v mestu.

* * * 


With a high wall of fire, spring
invisibly pulled in air and changed it
into eternal wakefulness. Season of white nights,
out of all the seasons the bears would sleep this one through.
The clouds have been shot through;
they nod off in the breath of a shoulder. There's nothing
in this deserted town except for birds and the red
ball that I'm sitting on.
That`s me inside the ball of feathers rolling down the hill.
In the ball I is a shield and sword, also I is not me.
Poison is whistling from a red balloon, leaking
tiny caterpillars on the rails and on the grass.

(Translated by Julija Potrč & Anthony McCann)



Pomlad z visokim zidom ognja
je neopazno zajela zrak in ga spremenila
v večno budnost. Letni čas bele noči,
ki bi ga medvedi prespali izmed vseh letnih časov.
Točke, kjer so oblaki prestreljeni,
kinkajo v dihu ramen. V tem pustem mestu
ni ničesar razen ptičev in rdeče
žoge, na kateri sedim.
Pernata krogla z mano v sredini se vali po klancu.
V krogli perja sem hkrati ščit in meč, in nisem jaz.
Iz rdečega balona piska strup in pušča
male gosenice ob tračnicah in na travah.

The Poet

Barbara Pogačnik (1973), poet, translator and literary critic, graduated from Université Catholique de Louvain, Belgium, and completed her MA at the Sorbonne in Paris, has published four poetry books: Poplave (Inundations, 2007), V množici izgubljeni papir (Sheets of Paper Lost in the Crowd, 2008), Modrina hiše / The Blue of the House (2013) and Alica v deželi plaščev (Alice in the Land of Coats, 2016). Her poetry has appeared in reviews and anthologies in 33 languages, she has participated in more than 60 different literary festivals and manifestations all over the world. More than 150 authors have appeared in her translations from French, English, Italian, Serbian, Croatian and Spanish. She has been director of the literary festival Poetry translating poets The Azure Circle from 2007- 2010 and has been member of several literary juries, member of the board of Slovenian center PEN, and of Slovenian Writers Association.

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Τρίτη, 28 Νοεμβρίου 2023

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