The God Abandons Antony The Canon
When abruptly, at midnight, you hear
an invisible procession pass by
with delightful music, and voices,
don’t grieve for your failing fortunes,
your spoiled deeds, the illusion of
your life’s plan; to mourn is useless.
Rather, with foreknowledge and boldness,
bid farewell to the departing Alexandria.
Above all, don’t fool yourself, don’t claim
it was just a dream, that you heard a lie;
avoid all such futile notions.
As if long prepared, and ever courageous,
acting as one who deserves such a city,
make your way to the window,
and listen closely with your heart, not
with cowardly pleas and protests;
hear, as a last pleasure, those sounds,
the delightful music of the invisible procession,
and bid farewell to the Alexandria you are losing.

Translated by Stratis Haviaras

(C.P. Cavafy, The Canon. Translated from the Greek by Stratis Haviaras, Hermes Publishing, 2004)

- Original Greek Poem

- Translation by Edmund Keeley/Philip Sherrard

- Translation by John Cavafy

- Translation by George Valassopoulo