BY ALEXANDRA PAPOUTSIS, HG 2017
We come from a people that live by the water. The mountains are daringly beautiful and cascade into
the sky to tower over everyone. But they are not monstrous, they are scaled to perfection
with low towering plants to show off the beauty and shape of the mountain. The houses are clustered and scattered and never overbearing. They all have little orange rooftops. The water extends into forever and is flat and gorgeous, and in the distance you can still see the next mountain. Pictures will never describe what I am trying to explain.
By the beach we can swim out far
Lay in the sand and stare at the stars
Part of me is forever there, never caring if we make it
The food is rich. Everything is fresh, and the man you
buy your fruits from at the market
Will throw in extra cherries because he is generous. When we get coffee,
Instead of saying “I’m tired.”
We say “I need to see you. I miss you” This is the Greek Culture.
And it would be nothing without the people.
I am lucky that everyone I have met, everything I have
seen, can be accredited to
The bonds I made when testing out the language on my tongue.
It can be certified by the hugs I shared on balconies
while telling stories
That will exist a lifetime,
Because none of us will ever forget them.
This is everything I have been blessed to see. The people are beautiful and strong.
They carry distinct features of their heritage,
Between dark hair and smiles,
And I cannot see where I have gone wrong.
I have sacrificed sleep here. I have forgotten 5:00 dinners.
I have learned that if something doesn’t get done, maybe
it wasn’t meant to get done.
I am looking at the airplane as it is flying over the Atlantic Ocean.
And my experience will only start making sense after.
Where does Greece belong?
There are many ways I could answer that,
But truly the only important answer is that Greece belongs in my heart.
One day we will all be reunited with all the people we
have come to love,
And it will be beautiful.
PLEASE VISIT OUR AFFILIATES & PARTNERS
American College of Greece
American Hellenic Institute
American School of Classical Studies at Athens
Hellenic American Bankers Association
Hellenic American Women’s Council
Modern Greek Studies Association
National Hellenic Museum
Stavros Niarchos Foundation
National Hellenic Society
85 S. Bragg Street, Suite 201
Alexandria, VA 22312
Office: (703) 256-3180
The National Hellenic Society is incorporated in the State of Delaware as a non-stock non-profit corporation. The Society is an approved tax-exempt organization under IRS Code Section 501(c)(3) and under applicable District of Columbia law and regulations.
© COPYRIGHT 2019 ALL RIGHTS RESERVED
HEADER PHOTOGRAPHY PHOTO BY CONSTANTINE SKENDERIS