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 

Chloe Koutsoumpeli, Greece

Chloe Koutsoumpeli, Greece

Chloe Koutsoumpeli, Greece



The Poems


Ι wanted to write you a letter, but I didn't know the hieroglyphics.
I wanted to touch you, but sometimes you were a century late, sometimes I came a millennium earlier.
When you left on the cave the imprint of your palm, my hand abruptly shrank.
When you painted buffalos, I was afraid of the bulls.
When Thira sank, I participated in the Minoan ritual of Spring,
When Rome was on fire, I lived in Pompeii.
When Agavi devoured you, I was entertaining Dionysos.
When you fought in the front line, I was in a concentration camp,
When they bombed your country, I was a tourist in the Alpes,
When you entered a train in Zurich, I was flying to Amsterdam.
All through time, in vain we struggled. Never were we at the same place at once.
But do people actually ever meet?
Besides how else could Poetry justify its existence?
Since it is the only land where souls can really meet.



Ήθελα κάποτε να σου γράψω ένα γράμμα, δεν γνώριζα όμως τα ιερογλυφικά.
Ήθελα κάποτε να συναντηθούμε, μα άλλοτε αργούσες εσύ έναν αιώνα, άλλοτε εγώ ερχόμουν μία χιλιετία πιο νωρίς.
Όταν εσύ άφηνες στο σπήλαιο αποτύπωμα παλάμης, το δικό μου χέρι μίκραινε απότομα.
Όταν εσύ ζωγράφιζες τον βίσονα, εγώ φοβόμουνα τους ταύρους.
Όταν καταποντιζόταν η Θήρα, εγώ συμμετείχα στην πομπή
της Άνοιξης.
Όταν καιγόταν η Ρώμη, εγώ κατοικούσα στην Πομπηία.
Όταν σε κατασπάραζε η Αγαύη, εγώ γλεντούσα με τον Διόνυσο.
Όταν πολεμούσες στα χαρακώματα, εγώ ήμουν σε στρατόπεδο συγκέντρωσης.
Όταν βομβάρδιζαν τη χώρα σου, εγώ πήγαινα εκδρομή
στις Άλπεις.
Όταν εσύ έμπαινες σε κάποιο τρένο στη Ζυρίχη, εγώ πετούσα για το Άμστερνταμ.
Σε όλες τις εποχές δεν βρέθηκε ποτέ χώρος για μας.
Μα ποιοι άνθρωποι άραγε ποτέ τους συναντιούνται;
Άλλωστε κάπως πρέπει να δικαιολογεί την ύπαρξή της και
η ποίηση.
Η μόνη γη που οι ψυχές συμπίπτουν.

* * * 


It is all our authors' fault.
My sister Eve fell in love with obscure mirrors
but at the end it was Flaubert
who destroyed her.
"Je suis Madame De Bovary"
he claimed
and stole her identity.
Then, the long bearded patriarch,
good old Tolstoi who thought himself God
after wrapping up Anna with furs of dead weasels
he sent her to be crashed on the rails of a train
out of unreasonable quilt.
As for my Ibsen, he insisted on calling me Nora
Although I repeatedly told him that my name is Eleonore
he made me darn his socks
and he forces me to leave in the cold with my suitcase every night
without even considering my rheumatics and my asthmatic cough.
Eventually all three have locked us up in their plays
like puppets in a dollhouse.
Only Antigone broke away
She preferred her dark cave
than surrendering to Euripides
who played the part of Kreon in the Ancient play.



Για όλα φταιν οι άντρες συγγραφείς μας.
Η αδελφή μου η Εύα
ερωτευόταν θολούς καθρέφτες
όμως τελικά ο Φλoμπέρ
ήταν αυτός που τη συνέτριψε.
«Εγώ είμαι η Μαντάμ Μποβαρύ»
δήλωσε κλέβοντας της την ταυτότητα.
Ύστερα ο πατριάρχης με τη μακριά γενειάδα,
ο γέρο Τολστόι που το 'παιζε θεός
αφού πρώτα τύλιξε την Άννα
σε γούνες από νεκρά κουνάβια
την έστειλε να συνθλιβεί
από αναίτιες ενοχές
στις ράγες ενός τρένου.
Όσο για τον δικό μου Ίψεν
επέμενε να με φωνάζει Νόρα
ενώ χίλιες φορές του τόνιζα
με λεν Ελεονόρα,
μ' έβαζε να του μαντάρω κάλτσες
και μ' αναγκάζει
να φεύγω με μία βαλίτσα στο κρύο κάθε βράδυ
χωρίς καθόλου να σκεφτεί
τα ρευματικά και τον ασθματικό μου βήχα.
Τελικά κι οι τρεις τους
μας φυλάκισαν στα έργα τους
μαριονέτες σε κουκλόσπιτο.
Μόνο η Αντιγόνη αυτονομήθηκε,
προτίμησε τη σκοτεινή σπηλιά
απ΄το να υποταχθεί στον Ευριπίδη
που στην τραγωδία υποδυότανε τον Κρέοντα

The Poet

Chloe Koutsoumpeli: She was born in Thessaloniki in 1962. Her first collection of poems was published in 1984. Ever since, she has published another nine collections of poems, two novels and two theatrical plays. Many of her poems were translated in English, German, French, Italian, Spanish, Slovenian, Turkish and Bulgarian and were included in Greek, American, Canadian, Spanish and German anthologies. Her collection of poems with the title THOSE WHO SIT IN THE SAME TABLE IN ANOTHER LAND, by Gabrielidis 2016 won the National Award of Poetry in 2017. Her theatrical play with the title ORFEUS IN THE BAR was played in Agora Theater in Patra in 2014, A collection of poems which have antiquity as their theme with the title ANTIGONE ALWAYS FORGETS SOMETHING WHEN SHE LEAVES, was published in 2020 by editions EL ARBOL DE LA LUZ in Sevilla, Spain translated by JOSE ANTONIO MORENO JURADO.


Χλόη Κουτσουμπέλη:  Γεννήθηκε το 1962 στη Θεσσαλονίκη. Η πρώτη της ποιητική συλλογή εκδόθηκε το 1984. Από τότε εκδόθηκαν άλλες εννέα ποιητικές συλλογές, δύο μυθιστορήματα και δύο θεατρικά έργα. Πολλά από τα ποιήματά της έχουν μεταφραστεί στα Αγγλικά, Γερμανικά, Ιταλικά, Ισπανικά, Σλοβενικά, Τουρκικά και Βουλγαρικά και έχουν συμπεριληφθεί σε Ελληνικές, Αμερικανικές, Καναδικές, Ισπανικές και Γερμανικές ανθολογίες. Η συλλογή της με τον τίτλο ΟΙ ΟΜΟΤΡΑΠΕΖΟΙ ΤΗΣ ΑΛΛΗΣ ΓΗΣ τιμήθηκε με το ΚΡΑΤΙΚΟ ΒΡΑΒΕΙΟ ΠΟΙΗΣΗΣ του 2017. Το θεατρικό της έργο με τίτλο ΟΡΦΕΑΣ ΣΤΟ ΜΠΑΡ ανέβηκε στο θέατρο ΑΓΟΡΑ στην Πάτρα το 2014. Μία συλλογή αρχαιόθεμων ποιημάτων με τίτλο ΠΑΝΤΑ ΚΑΤΙ ΞΕΧΝΑ Η ΑΝΤΙΓΟΝΗ ΟΤΑΝ ΦΕΥΓΕΙ εκδόθηκε από τις εκδόσεις ΦΩΤΟΔΕΝΤΡΟ στη Σεβίλλη, μεταφρασμένη από τον JOSE ANTONIO MORENO JURADO.

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Πέμπτη, 30 Νοεμβρίου 2023

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