C. P. Cavafy

Looking at a half-grey opal
I remembered two fine grey eyes
I saw, it must be twenty years before. . . .

. . . . . . . . . . . . . .
For one month we loved each other.
Then he left, I think for Smyrne,
to work there, and we never met again.

The grey eyes – if he’s alive – they’ll have faded;
the fine face will have collapsed.

O memory, keep them as they were.
And, memory, whatever you can of that love of mine,
whatever you can, carry me back tonight.

[Written and published 1917]

Original Greek Poem