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Unpublished “Julian” Poems

In Cavafy on October 4, 2018 at 1:06 am

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I originally translated these poems about Julian the Apostate by Constantine Cavafy for an essay I wrote called Denying Julian, for the Cavafy Forum, University of Michigan’s Modern Greek and Classics publication. I received access to them via literal English versions from the Cavafy Archive in Athens and turned them into English poems. Read the rest of this entry »

“Denying Julian” Published on the Cavafy Forum

In Cavafy, Essays, Poetry, Publications on December 22, 2008 at 10:30 pm

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My essay on the Constantine P. Cavafy’s Julian the Apostate poems has been published on the University of Michigan’s Cavafy Forum online journal.

Cavafy is a Greek Alexandrian modernist who worked around the turn of the 20th century. The Julian poems are a series of historical poems about the last pagan emperor of Rome.

My contention is, basically, that in denying Julian, Cavafy is embracing himself, the real Cavafy, with all his trials and shortcomings, rather than electing to live in an imaginary past, however attractive.

Considering the fact that I once wrote a poem, “Reading Cavafy,” about how I’d never revisit the historical poems, writing the essay was as much of a surprise as actually placing it.

The University of Michigan’s Modern Greek Studies department’s Cavafy Forum is here. Directly download a .pdf of Denying Julian here.

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