You Didnt Understand The Canon
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With respect to the matter of our religious beliefs,
the dull-witted Julian proclaimed, I read, I understood,
I condemned. He must have thought wed be devastated
with that I condemned of his the pathetic oaf.
 
But such cleverness doesnt count for much with us Christians.
We shot back, You read but you didnt understand;
for had you understood, you wouldnt have condemned.

Translated by Stratis Haviaras

(C.P. Cavafy, The Canon. Translated from the Greek by Stratis Haviaras, Hermes Publishing, 2004)

- Original Greek Poem

- Translation by Edmund Keeley/Philip Sherrard