Odysseus Elytis: The Autopsy

The Autopsy

And so they found that the gold of the olive root had dripped in the re-
      cesses of his heart.

And from the many times that he had lain awake by candlelight waiting
      for the dawn, a strange heat had seized his entrails.

A little below the skin, the blue line of the horizon sharply painted. And
      ample traces of blue throughout his blood.

The cries of birds which he had come to memorize in hours of great loneli-
      ness apparently spilled out all at once, so that it was impossible for
      the knife to enter deeply.

Probably the intention sufficed for the evil

Which he met—it is obvious—in the terrifying posture of the innocent.
      His eyes open, proud, the whole forest moving still on the unblem-
      ished retina.

Nothing in the brain but a dead echo of the sky.

Only in the hollow of his left ear some light fine sand, as though in a shell.
      Which means that often he had walked by the sea alone with the pain
      of love and the roar of the wind.

As for those particles of fire on his groin, they show that he moved time
      hours ahead whenever he embraced a woman.

We shall have early fruit this year.

Translated by Edmund Keeley & Philip Sherrard

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