|The Lanis you loved, Markos, isn’t here
in this tomb you come to weep by, lingering hours on end.
The Lanis you loved is closer to you
when you’re in your room at home and you look at his portrait—
the portrait that still keeps something of what was valuable in him,
something of what it was you used to love.
Remember, Markos, that time you brought in
the famous Kyrenian painter from the Proconsul’s palace?
What artistic subtlety he used trying to persuade you both,
the minute he saw your friend,
that he absolutely must do him as Hyacinth.
In that way his portrait would come to be better known.
But your Lanis didn’t hire out his beauty like that:
reacting strongly, he told him to portray
neither Hyacinth nor anyone else,
but Lanis, son of Rametichos, an Alexandrian.
|Translated by Edmund Keeley/Philip Sherrard|
|(C.P. Cavafy, Collected Poems. Translated by Edmund Keeley and Philip Sherrard. Edited by George Savidis. Revised Edition. Princeton University Press, 1992) |
|- Original Greek Poem
|- Translation by George Valassopoulo|