What’s the most recent song you’ve cried to?

By: | Post date: 2016-11-12 | Comments: No Comments
Posted in categories: Modern Greek, Music

My close followers will have noted a bunch of posts lately on Greek songs that move me. This is another one.

What have I done to you, to make you smoke. 1968. Lyrics: Lefteris Papadopoulos. Music: Mimis Plessas.

stixoi.info: Τι σου `κανα και πίνεις

The lyrics are nowhere near as indirect and allusive as some I’ve posted. It’s a torch song that first appeared in a movie, after all, not part of a concept album. And its language is visceral. Too visceral in fact for me to do justice to it in English. Not “smoke”, but “drink cigarettes” (idiomatic in Greek). Not “stare at the floor”, but “your eyes are nails on the floor”. Not “my heart breaks”, but “my insides spasm”.

And the music is a dignified, steady, impassioned lament.

I’m crying again.

What have I done to you, to make you smoke cigarette after cigarette,
and your bitter eyes be nailed to the floor?

Tell me, why won’t you let me, with two kisses,
take away the dark cloud from your murky eyes?

The pains that stab you are double pains for me,
the tears you cry are dripping into my heart.

If you only knew how my insides spasm for you,
standing so far from me and speaking not a word.

My wordless mouth, my extinguished moon,
I curse the hour and the fateful moment.

I’ll give up everything for you, everything: I’ll die,
just so no sigh will ever touch you again.

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