You send me wilted flowers

To cool my miserable heart

But they are only consolation.

With tears I water them

I kiss them with love

So they will revive again.

This I do to ask them a secret

Which I keep hidden in the heart.

Perhaps they know to tell me

Perhaps they happen to see.

–Drosis Logothetis, 1922

(Excerpted from the The Journals of Drosis Logothetis)

NOTE: My grandfather Drosis immigrated to the U.S. in 1911 from the island of Lefkada, off the west coast of Greece. Over the course of the next twenty years, he made daily entries in a series of journals, telling of personal hardship, dreams and hopes, strengths and weaknesses, successes and failures, loneliness and longing, curiosity and intellect, responsibility and guilt. All of which my father, George Drosis Logothetis Sr, has copied in their entirety, and passed along to his own children. Many of these journals featured a number of poems (30 or 40 in total) that I am now editing, along with the best quotations and observations from the journals themselves. “Perhaps” is one of the poems that I have translated, rather clunkily, from the original Greek.