poetry by Manolis
What a relief spring is over and the soldiers with their rifles spouting sunlight through their barrels left They came in the midst of April as if there wasn't any other way for the spring to come but with soldiers holding rifles What a relief frost is over and the chickadee dreams on another nest of another chick or two just another reason for the red jib to unfurl just another reason for the white chapel to be repainted in whitewash
We looked in the remote chapels and through the pine needles sieving sunlight explored the statue's smooth body and the rained spider web we searched in the sigh of rose petals in starbursts and worm-eaten pages penned by hallucinating prophets we hunted in decapitated houses but we didn't find God anywhere and we didn't discover him in the statue or touch him in spider webs recluse talked of God being Dead and the people danced in the plaza knowing the recluse's verdict
Why stand by your door piercing the mountain as if trying to paint it green on the retinas of your eyes and the light breeze how can you paint blind by feel? To what end do you point your hand at the ice caped peaks as if to let them know about the ghosts never passing by anymore as if to tell them that spring is coming soon when they exude green velvet when they redress in light hues
– Apryl Leaf
About the Author
Manolis (Emmanuel Aligizakis) is a Greek-Canadian poet and author. He was recently appointed an honorary instructor and fellow of the International Arts Academy, and awarded a Masters for the Arts in Literature. He is recognized for his ability to convey images and thoughts in a rich and evocative way that tugs at something deep within the reader. Born in the village of Kolibari on the island of Crete in 1947, he moved with his family at a young age to Thessaloniki and then to Athens, where he received his Bachelor of Arts in Political Sciences from the Panteion University of Athens. After graduation, he served in the armed forces for two years and emigrated to Vancouver in 1973, where he worked as an iron worker, train labourer, taxi driver, and stock broker, and studied English Literature at Simon Fraser University. He has written three novels and numerous collections of poetry, which are steadily being released as published works. His articles, poems and short stories in both Greek and English have appeared in various magazines and newspapers in Canada, United States, Sweden, Hungary, Slovakia, Romania, Australia, and Greece. His poetry has been translated into Spanish, Romanian, Swedish, German, Hungarian languages and has been published in book form or in magazines in various countries. He now lives in White Rock, where he spends his time writing, gardening, traveling, and heading Libros Libertad, an unorthodox and independent publishing company which he founded in 2006 with the mission of publishing literary books. His translation book George Seferis-Collected Poems was shortlisted for the Greek National Literary Awards, the highest literary recognition of Greece.
"Impulses conjures a mosaic of old world images, tiled with colours and dilemmas from the present. Manolis ransacks his classical Greek roots and the cosmopolitan now, to unearth some meaning for his modern existence. He wrestles with such timeless subjects as the value of human life, innocence and aging.
These poems move with contrasting moods, as eroticism is juxtaposed with isolation, and intimacy is wedged between dark humour and sheer outrage."
– Apryl Leaf
"Sometimes words are ghosts dancing with myth and memory. Greek-Canadian poet Manolis, demonstrates this in Impulses, his new collection of poems. His poetry springs from a congenital intimacy with a culture and its history. In essence, we are before a poetic glance that is also a revolving metaphor encircling feelings from a Mediterranean philosophy. Poets tend to be witnesses of paradoxes. In recreating them it's not a compromise between logic and rational; it's an absolute nouveau reality. With this new book, Manolis tells us that poetry is an affirmation of the soul, a witness for the dream. Fine poetry, there is."
– Eduardo Bettencourt Pinto