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Ekstasis Editions & Libros Libertad 2019
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Translated by
Introduction by

When Yannis Ritsos’s Moonlight Sonata was published in France in 1961 the famous surrealist poet Louis Aragon called Ritsos the best poet in the world. Having read and studied the works of innumerable poets over the years, I have concluded that Aragon was right. I would also add that not only was Ritsos the greatest poet of his own time, he truly is the greatest poet ever. Not only for his colossal
volume of work but for his expressiveness, his crystal-clear images, and the unique way he sees through his personal lens. His keen eye presents the reader with anything and everything pertaining to human life in such excruciating detail, with such amazing clarity, and in such beautiful poetics as no other poet has ever accomplished. Only a poet with these gifts could capture such an image as the following:
The sea, the sun, the trees. And again, the trees,
the sun, the sea.
Pay attention:
in this reversed repetition, the sun is still
the center like lust is the center of the body

about the translator

Emmanuel Aligizakis, (Manolis) is a Cretan-Canadian poet and author. He was recently appointed an honorary instructor and fellow of the International Arts Academy, and awarded a Master’s for the Arts in Literature. He emigrated to Vancouver in 1973, where he worked as an iron worker, train labourer, taxi driver, and stock broker, and studied English Literature at Simon Fraser University. His articles, poems and short stories in both Greek and English have appeared in various magazines and newspapers in Canada, United States, Sweden, Hungary, Slovakia, Romania, Australia, Jordan, Serbia and Greece. His poetry has been translated into Spanish, Romanian, Swedish, German, Hungarian, Ukrainian, French, Portuguese, Arabic, Turkish, Serbian, Russian, Italian, Chinese, Japanese, languages and has been published in book form or in magazines in various countries.
He now lives in White Rock, where he spends his time writing, gardening, traveling, and heading Libros Libertad, an unorthodox and independent publishing company which he founded in 2006 with the mission of publishing literary books.
His translation George Seferis: Collected Poems was shortlisted for the Greek National Literary Awards, the highest literary recognition of Greece. In September 2017 he was awarded the First Poetry Prize of the Mihai Eminescu International Poetry Festival, in Craiova, Romania.

book reviews
‘Yannis Ritsos – the poet’ a comment by John Wall Barger