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 

Nama Abdelrazig K. Abdalla, Libya


Nama Abdelrazig K. Abdalla, Libya

The Poems

The Country's Womb 

A tear on the country's cheek
Is not enough
For it doesn't grow fear in a heart
Cured with salt
And dried with tanoor's* heat
Like soft bread.

For it doesn't wipe a tattoo off
The forehead of an old woman
Who spends the night praising god
On a prayer rug
That perished on its way to god.

For it doesn't heal a scar on the cheek of a woman
Who lost her face in her tribe's pocket
Yet she rescued it from their dry howling
By grabbing it with her painted nails.

For it doesn't run behind the giggles of a child
On his father's funeral
Trying to catch him, but fail
As the father's running to his own death.

For it doesn't wash off a birthmark
That lays underneath the breast of a girl
Who eats poetry from war's shoulder
And spits it into the cities' stomachs
Until they become full.

For it doesn't flood a sidewalk
Punctured with military footsteps
Till it no longer remembers
The sounds and dances of anklets.

For it doesn't quenches a baby's thirst
Whose mother's breast was chewed by cancer
And whose father's limbs were harvested by mines.

A blood drop from the country's womb
Is not enough
For it doesn't squeezes the country's breast
Until all bad blood flows out.

For it doesn't give birth to a martyr
With no name that turns to him
When his everlasting silence arrives.

For it doesn't aborts a fetus
Barely clinging
By virtue of grandmothers' prayers
And the rituals of marabouts*.

It doesn't forbid praying in mosques
It doesn't nullify one's fasting
It doesn't deprive a man from desiring women,
Nor does it stain history books
And the Harabi charter*

A blood drop from the country's womb
Is not enough for me
To deflower the meaning
Of a script like this one
A tear on the country's cheek
Is not enough for me
To cry through one poem
And become a real poet

(Translated by Safa Hossen)

*Tanoor: is a cylindrical clay oven placed vertically used for baking bread.
*Marabouts: are wandering holy men who survive on alms. They are Sufi guides or leaders of religious communities.
*Harabi charter: in 1946, Libyans adopted the Harabi charter in which they put their past differences and allowed the country to move towards independence and consensus based on a shared national vision.

من رحم البلاد

دمعة على خد البلاد
لا تكفي
لا تنبت الخوف في قلب
قدده الملح
وجففته لفحة التنور مثل رغيف رطب

لا تمسح وشماً على جبين عجوز
تعقد تسابيح الليل
على طرف سجادة
بادت في طريقها إلى الله

لا تسد ندباً على خد امرأة
فقدت وجهها في جيب القبيلة
فانتشلته بأظافرها الملونة
من عواءهم الجاف

لا تركض خلف ضحكات طفل
في عزاء أبيه
فشلت في اللحاق به
وهو يهرّول إلى موته

لا تغسل شامة عالقة
تحت نهد فتاة
تأكل الشعر من كتف الحرب
وتبصقه في معدة المدن
حتى تشبع

لا تغرق رصيفاً
ثقبت ذاكرته أحذية العساكر
فما عاد يَذكر
موسيقى الخلاخيل ورقصها

لا تروى عطش رضيع
قضم السرطان ثدي أمه
وقطفت الألغام أطراف أبيه

قطرة دم من رحم البلاد
لا تكفي
لا تعصر صدرها ألماً
حتى يسيل الدم الفاسد دفعة واحدة

لا تلد شهيداً دون اسم
يلتفت له عند سماع صمته الأول

لا تجهض جنيناً
تثبته دعوات الجدات و رفسة المرابطين

لا تمنع الصلاة في المساجد
لا تفسد صيام أحد
لا تنفض شهوة رجل من أسرة النساء
لا تلطخ كتب التاريخ
وميثاق الحرابي
قطرة دم من رحم البلاد
لا تكفي
لأفض بكارة المعنى
داخل نص مثل هذا

دمعة على خد البلاد
لا تكفي
لأبكي داخل قصيدة واحدة
وأصبح شاعرة

Twenty Five

At age of twenty five
Things take a new manner
Void amuses me. chaos fixes me up
Tears knock my eye's door, like a homeless I wouldn't let in
When everyone leaves, I remain here
But also let go of myself
When everyone comes in, I leave without my face
I await for fear. as anxiety awaits for me
The shadow hangs me on a cloud behind the sun
I peel the sun like a summery orange
My memories open me up, like a music box with seven tones
My old laughter, my ex's voice, dad's sneezing,
My sister's singing, mum's neck creaking, the sound of airplanes taking off,
And the barking of the neighbour's dog.

At the age of twenty five
The grave looks like a good place to hide
My bed seems like a gay lover who doesn't fulfil my needs
Nightmares are spoiled dreams. Singing is a thrilling cry.
Laughter is a lump of tears in the throat. sanity is the madness of the dead.
Marriage is a corrupt contract. femininity is an unfair game.
War is nothing more than illusion in a war-poet's imagination.

At the age of twenty five
The picture that resembles my childhood smiles to all faces
But yells at mine
As I start finding void amusing
And leave without my face when everyone comes in.

(Translated by Safa Hossen)

الخامسة والعشرين

في الخامسة و العشرين

يضحكني الفراغ .. ترتبني الفوضى

يطرق البكاء باب عيني شحاذ لا يفتح له

يغادر الجميع أبقى دوني

يأتي الجميع أغادر دون وجهي

أتربص بالخوف .. تغنيني حناجر القلق

يعلقني الظل على سحابة وراء الشمس

أقشر الشمس برتقالة صيفية

تفتحني الذكريات صندوقا بسبع رنات

ضحكتي القديمة، بحة حبيب سابق، عطاس أبي،

غناء أختي، طقطقة رقبة أمي، صوت إقلاع طائرة،

نباح كلب الجار

في الخامسة و العشرين

يبدو القبر مخبئ جيد

والسرير عاشق شاذ لا يجيد الجنس

.. الكابوس حلم مدلل .. الغناء بكاء شيق

الضحك دمعة تتردد في الحلق.. العقل جنون الموتى..

الزواج عقد فاسد.. الأنوثة لعبة جائرة..

الحرب وهم في مخيلة الشاعر الجندي..

في الخامسة و العشرين

الصورة المعلقة على ظهر طفولتي تضحك في وجه الجميع

و تصرخ في وجهي

أنا التي يضحكني الفراغ

و أغادر دون وجهي حين يأتي الجميع

The Poet

Nama Abdelrazig K. Abdalla: Was born on the 9th of June 1992 in Libya, studied medicine in the university of Benghazi and graduated with a MBBS degree. Now she works as a physician in Benghazi. She is a young poet, free-lance writer and a civil activist who works with local and international NGOs. Participated in cultural events in Libya and neighbouring countries, she is also a member of Tanarout Organization for Libyan Creativity. She participated in the 31 Medellin International Poetry Festival, 2021. She is interested in intercultural and interreligious dialogue and was one of the founders who released the Arab Youth Forum for Interreligious and Intercultural Dialogue in Jordan in December 2019, As well as participating in Regional Dialogue fellows in Tunisia and Jordan in 2018.

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