You often say ‘I would give, but only to the deserving.’ The trees in your orchard say not so, nor the flocks in your pasture. They give that they may live, for to withhold is to perish.
Surely he who is worthy to receive his days and his nights is worthy of all else from you.
And he who has deserved a drink from the ocean of life deserves to fill his cup from your little stream.
And who are you that men should rend their bosom and unveil their pride, that you may see their worth naked and their pride unabashed?
See first that you yourself deserve to be a giver, and an instrument of giving. For in truth it is life that gives unto life - while you, who deem yourself a giver, are but a witness.
Last night I bundled into a room
My every move screaming I don’t know what to do!
Though they deem me fit and fitting
able and willing
I contend with myself the morning after and know the truth for a moment
I want to get off here.
How much I have loved you I alone know
I who touched you once with the eyes of the Pleiades
And embraced you in the wild hair of the moon and we danced in the summer fields
On the stubble after harvest, and we ate the cut clover
Dark and great sea with so many pebbles round your neck, so many coloured stones
in your hair.
Translated by Sally Purcell
Reprinted by permission of Anvil Press Poetry from Amorgos (1998)
Though we have broken their statues,
though we have driven them out of their temples,
the gods did not die because of this.
O Ionian land, it is you they still love,
it is you their souls still remember.
When the August morning dawns upon you
a vigour from their life moves through your air;
and at times a figure of ethereal youth,
indistinct, in rapid stride,
crosses over your hills.
Translated by Rae Dalven
Reprinted by permission of Chatto & Windus from The Complete Poems of C.P. Cavafy (1961)
A criminally neglected part of British history is the true scope of the African diaspora in Britain that reaches as far back as Renaissance Europe. A new book by Onyeka Nubia seeks to rectify the problem, examining the lives of the thousands of blacks that lived in the UK in Tudor times. In Blackamoores: Africans in Tudor England, Onyeka Nubia shares research conducted in uncovering early evidence of Black existence in the United Kingdom, and proves that black presence was evident a lot earlier than is usually assumed. Nubia’s research focuses on the Tudor era (1485- 1603), specifically looking at the four English cities of London, Plymouth, Bristol and Barnstable.
Find more information at narrative-eye.org.uk and sign their Petition to Education Secretary, Michael Gove, to Reflect True English History by Including Black Tudors in the National Curriculum