My life moves along two paths.
As if its sources meet somewhere with the sources of the Acheron.
One-half of me is there, in Hades.
My soul wanders in those moldy footpaths.
For years now I planned to go there barefoot. My roughened feet to touch the roughness of the earth, to take from it the mystery it hides. I thought that only in that way would I be able to communicate with the souls.
Dexileos insisted that he could ride a horse. Suddenly, yesterday, after seeing Aeschylos’ tragedy, he said that could ride.
I do not recognize him.
Since yesterday I have found the old Dexileos again.
His handicap will become the source of a different type of happiness, I am certain, of a shattering knowledge. Of that singular knowledge that is both an initiation and also liberation of the soul. Since yesterday he asks me to recite to him the hymns of Orpheus, “I am a child of the earth and of the starry heavens,” and he repeats them endlessly:
Rejoice, having suffered,
From man, you have become a god
At the Nekyomanteion we will hear the song of Orpheus, he says, and he believes that. We will also see his tortoise-shell lyre.
He has been initiated into the Eleusinian Mysteries; he knows.
Melampous is there also, as altar priest, he continues.
And I reflect that perhaps he will tell me where I will find my Hippolyte.
We both feel a strange enthusiasm, which is also a fear.
I see him galloping beside me.
His broken thigh certain pains him, but he does not show it.
So intent is he on galloping that I am afraid.
He is shouting to the wilderness; I hear him shouting with all his strength.
And I remember that I, too, had shouted, when we were going to Elis.
At that time I needed to liberate my own soul
Now it is his turn.
I no longer envy him.
That was my dream, to be initiated into the mysteries of the Underworld.
I am overcome by uneasiness.
Until today I believed that the meadow of the dead was beside me, in my life, in the plain of my sleep.
I no longer know what awaits me.
The Wooden Wall is written in Athens, in Amfiarraon, and in the islan of Lemnos
A best selling novel
All translated into English
by Theony Condos and Minoas Pothos