COUNSELOR: Poetry Crisis Line, what is your emergency?
CALLER: Since we still had some hardtack / how stupid of us / to go ashore and eat
COUNSELOR: Did you stop at some waterfront dive?
CALLER: the Sun’s slow cattle,
COUNSELOR: Oh. Ship’s rations can be bland, but cattle rustling?
CALLER: for each was a castle
COUNSELOR: Oh—cas-tle. I thought you said—
CALLER: you’d have to battle / forty years,
COUNSELOR: You had a hankering for siegefood?
CALLER: till you’d become / a hero
COUNSELOR: So now you are the sandwich?
CALLER: and a star!
COUNSELOR: Oh, are you in one of those places that names sandwiches after celebrities?
CALLER: On the earth’s back
COUNSELOR: How do you know which side is which?
CALLER: we hungered,
COUNSELOR: Is the food better in the front?
CALLER: but when we’d eaten well / we fell to these lower regions / mindless and satisfied.
COUNSELOR: Yeah, that sometimes happens to me when I’ve eaten too much.
Read the rest of “The Companions in Hades” by Giorgos Seferis here.