Evening The Canon
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By no means could those things have lasted long.
The experience of the years has shown it me.
Still, it was somewhat hurriedly that fate
stopped them. The enraptured time was quickly gone.
But how the perfumes did inebriate —
What a transcendent bed we lay upon,
what joy voluptuous our bodies knew!
 
A resonance of the voluptuous days,
a resonance thereof comes close to me,
some glow of the two of us in our young days:
a faded letter I take up anew
and read and read it till the daylight drops.
 
And I go out upon the balcony
to quit my thoughts — to change them while I gaze
at the dear old town, at the quick life along
the darkening street and by the lighted shops.

Translated by John Cavafy

(Poems by C. P. Cavafy. Translated, from the Greek, by J. C. Cavafy. Ikaros, 2003)

- Original Greek Poem

- Translation by Edmund Keeley/Philip Sherrard