Women Poetry: Dr. Maria Do Sameiro Barraso, Portugal

Exclusive: Women Poetry: Edited by Padmaja Iyengar-Paddy
Maria Do Sameiro Barraso

MEDUSA I

You come from the mist of history,
from the darkness of the Greek 
archaic world populated by Giants, 
Cyclops and all kinds of monsters.
You come from the riddles of the past,
as a symbol of poisoning and evil.
Your sin is nuclear, but you had to die.
From the blood of your beheaded
neck, beautiful red corals emerged
to protect and adorn the maidens’ neck,
recalling the beautiful hair
that once had crowned your head.
Your memory lives now among green 
moss, waterand sea corals.
I did see your face turned upside down,
running water washing your stare, 
purified by time
at the Basilica Cistern of Istanbul.
***


MEDUSA II

I read your words of stone, listening 
to the sighs of those who fell helplessly,
petrified by your eyes.
Once you were a beautiful maiden, 
someone says,
but the wheels of misfortune 
turned you into a snake-hairy monster. 
You were abused by Poseidon, 
and punished instead of him,
damned to live like a winged 
and scaly nightmare
until Perseus freed the world 
from the inflicting venom
that the destiny harshly instilled 
into you.
But you survived in the duality 
and ambivalence of heavenly deities,
turned into a guardian at the gates 
of shelters of pain.
***

Dr. Maria do Sameiro Barroso from Portugal,  medical doctor, and multilingual poet, translator, essayist and researcher in Portuguese and German Literature, Translations Studies and History of Medicine, has authored over 40 books of poetry, published in Portugal, Brazil and other countries, along with translations and books of essays. Her poems are translated into over twenty languages. She is a recipient of national and international prizes such as International Prize Pray of Mother Teresa,“Gjon Nikkollë Kazazi, Gjakovë, Kosovo” (2019); Prix International de poésie de l'Académie Européene des Sciences, des Arts et des Lettres (AESAL) 2020; 1st Prize "Versos del Pilcomayo” Bolivia (2020). 

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