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 

Jean Jacques Pierre-Paul, Haiti


Jean Jacques Pierre-Paul, Haiti

The Poems

Why Nobody is Joane Florvil

Nobody wants to be the victim of their own destiny
Nobody wants to bear the name of their own abyss
Nobody wants
to get up each day
with the world's scars on their forehead
They killed you, Joane Florvil,
every day

When they murdered you in Africa
they said it was tradition
When they murdered you in the United States
it was self-defense
They murdered you in Chile
because you were a bad mother

The truth is everyone profits from your death
They pay some to accuse you
others to arrest you
others to place your death notice in the media

A small group of the outraged
try to keep you in collective memory
but it's useless to cry pronouncing your name
or asking your forgiveness
How can we live with such immorality?
How can we live in a city without poetry
or mirrors, without embraces, without Joane Florvil?

I am one of the cowards
who didn't understand you, defend you
All that is left for me now is to cry
as I write this poem
to tell you I am ashamed
to belong to the species that killed you
In a city filled with pretentious cowards
we might have loved you
might have created
a beautiful bird's nest from your gaze

(Translated by Margaret Randall)


¿Porque nadie es Joane Florvil?

Nadie quiere ser el blanco de su propio destino
Nadie quiere llevar el nombre de su propio abismo
Nadie va a querer
Levantarse todos los días
Con las cicatrices del mundo en la frente
Te mataron Joane Florvil
Todos los días
En todas partes
Cuando te mataron en África
Dijeron que era por costumbre
Cuando te mataron en Estados Unidos
Dijeron que era por autodefensa
Cuando te mataron en Chile
Dijeron que era por ser una mala madre

Lo cierto es que muchos ganan con tu muerte
Pagan a algunos para acusarte
Pagan a otros para arrestarte
Pagan a otros para dar la noticia en los medios de dominación
Un grupito de indignados intenta
Hacerte entrar en la memoria colectiva
Pero llorar diciendo tu nombre no sirve para nada
Pedirte perdón tampoco
¿Cómo es posible vivir en medio de tanta oscuridad?
Como es posible vivir en una ciudad sin poesía
Sin espejos, sin abrazos, ¿sin Joane Florvil?

Soy uno de los cobardes
Que no querían entenderte defenderte
Lo único que se me ocurre ahora es llorar
y escribir este poema para decirte
Que siento mucha vergüenza
De ser parte de la humanidad que te mató
En una ciudad llena de cobardes pretenciosos
Teníamos la oportunidad de amarte
Teníamos la oportunidad de hacer
Con tu mirada un bello nido de pájaros

* * * 

Life is the beauty of existence

You didn't have enough spring times
to count all the stones we hurled at you
You didn't live to understand the Chilean dream
We all murdered you Joane Florvil
because your eyes were the wrong color
your accent isn't English, French or from Berlin
Now we don't know what to tell your daughter

We murdered you because it is dangerous to be Joane Florvil
at election time
but you could teach us something
Your brief journey left a lesson
we will soon forget:
The only thing worth loving is one human being
different from all others

Living isn't urgent
Loving is

(Translated by Margaret Randall)


Vivir es la belleza de existir

No alcanzaste a coleccionar suficientes primaveras
A contar todas las piedras que te hemos lanzado
No alcanzaste a entender el sueño chileno
Te matamos todos Joane Florvil
Por el color de tus ojos
Porque tu acento no es inglés, francés ni berlinés
Ahora no sabemos qué decir a tu hija

Te matamos porque es peligroso ser Joane Florvil
En tiempos de elecciones en un país sin negros
Pero algo pudiste enseñarnos
Tu corto viaje dejó una lección
Que pronto será olvidada:

Lo único digno de amar en un ser humano
Es lo que le hace diferente de los demás

Vivir no es urgente
Amar sí

The Poet

Jean Jacques Pierre-Paul was born in Jacmel, Haiti, in 1979. He is a poet and surgeon by profession, graduated in Cuba (Santiago de Cuba) with a Master's degree in Public Health from the University of Valparaíso, Chile, and a Diploma in Health Occupational at the University of Chile. He currently resides in Las Cruces, Chile, for 10 years. Writes and publishes in Spanish, Creole and French. Also practice painting-illustration and translation. He has lived in Chile for a decade. He attended the poetry workshop at the Soler Puig Cultural Center in Santiago de Cuba, directed by the poet Reinaldo García Blanco. He has published Miroir in Pierres Lisibles (Haiti, 2007), Future Islands (2010), Delirium (2013), Fleurs d'existence / Existential Flowers (2014), Voices of my voice (2015), Seven loose abysses and a man walking (2017), I write to you to stop dying (2017), Wandering Words (Anthology, 2018) and its Creole translation of Art of Birds, by Pablo Neruda (2019). It has been invented at great national and international poetry festivals such as the Medellín International Poetry Festival 2021 and its poems translated and published in multiple anthologies and literary magazines. Publish on your website
He is currently preparing the reissue of the 6 books published in Chile. The 2nd of the book "Voces de mi voz" by Editorial Anagenesis will soon be available in the bookstore.


Jean Jacques Pierre-Paul nació en Jacmel, Haití, en 1979. Es poeta y médico cirujano de profesión, titulado en Cuba (Santiago de Cuba) con grado académico de Magíster en Salud Publica de la Universidad de Valparaíso, Chile, y Diplomado en Salud Ocupacional en la Universidad de Chile. Reside actualmente en Las Cruces, Chile, desde hace 10 años. Escribe y publica en español, creole y francés. Practica también la pintura-ilustración y la traducción. Vive en Chile hace una década. Asistió al taller de poesía del Centro Cultural Soler Puig de Santiago de Cuba, dirigido por el poeta Reinaldo García Blanco. Ha publicado Miroir en Pierres Lisibles (Haití, 2007), Islas del futuro (2010), Delirium (2013), Fleurs d'existence/ Flores existenciales (2014), Voces de mi voz (2015), Siete abismos sueltos y un hombre caminando (2017), Te escribo para dejar de morir (2017), Palabras Errantes (Antología, 2018) y su traducción al creole de Arte de Pájaros, de Pablo Neruda (2019). Ha sido inventado a grandes festivales nacionales e internacionales de poesía como Festival Internacional de Poesía de Medellín 2021 y sus poemas traducidos y publicados en múltiples antologías y revistas literarias. Publica en su página web Actualmente está preparando la reedición de los 6 libros publicados en Chile. Pronto estará disponible en la librarías la 2da del libro "Voces de mi voz" a cargo de la Editorial Anagénesis.

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