Edited by Richard Stone
Alex Vavoulis, former professor at Fresno State and a founding father of KFCF, offers us a poem written in 1966 by his longtime friend Thanasis Maskaleris. Vavoulis writes, “[Maskalaris] is Professor Emeritus of Classics, Comparative Literature and Creative Writing, and of the Center for Modern Greek Studies at San Francisco State University. He is a poet, translator of Greek and author.” Unfortunately, the poem could be written today with few changes.
Upcountry from Delano
The offenses of Mammon are legion,
but greatest is the offense against the vine—
this is to wound the heart of Dionysos and Christ.
Here, under the banners and the burned faces,
I see the simple strength of Zapata
and the complex mind of revolution—
the undying vine protesting in human form.
But beyond the march of wrath that
Cesar Chavez leads,
I see only the immense sleep of the nation’s
the dreams of self-righteousness that
and breaks up the demonstrations of life…