Same Old Same Old is a Pyrofani Poem written by the English writer Roger Green who lives and writes on Hydra Island Greece.
When Greeks wanted to impress
A youthful Roger travelling on his own,
They would boast: “Our language is very rich -
We have many different words for ‘stone’,
Like: pebble; rock; stone itself;
Gravel; slate; er - boulder;
Er, well, we have lots of different words.
How many do you have?” Now that I am older
I know what answer I would give,
Without sounding patronising or snobbish:
Our language is very rich too,
We have lots of words for ‘rubbish’,
Such as: garbage; refuse; trash; debris;
Litter; lumber; rubble; rot;
Effluvium; detritus; crap; tat; junk;
Dregs; scum; waste; and grot,”
To name but a few more mentionable words -
Several others are fairly rude.
Then there’s the rubbish that comes out of our bodies,
But I don’t want to put you off your food.
Hydra is particularly well-endowed
With garbage of every variety.
We even hang some of it in galleries
To show we are a sophisticated society,
Although we haven’t quite decided yet
Whether art is rubbish or rubbish art -
Which ought to have precedence,
The donkey or the cart.
What, if any, value should be put
On the flotsam and jetsam that one finds
On the beach? A new exhibition
May help us to make up our minds.
Hydrans have many traditional habits,
One is especially peculiar -
We love setting fire to things,
Like Judas, or the boat at Miaoulia.
Above all we are proud of our rubbish tip
Which smoulders day and night.
When it gets out of control, yellow aeroplanes come
To dump water - a wondrous sight.
The refuse that refuses to burn
Slides gently down into the sea
To be washed up on the beaches
In perfect circularity.
From tip to sea, to beach, to bin, to tip.
What system could be more sound?
This is the true recycling -
The garbage goes round and round.
There’s the rubbish that comes out of our mouths,
There’s the litter that’s thrown in the bin,
But there’s also a third kind of muck
And that’s the sort that goes in:
The spécialité de la maison
That put the Pyrofani on the map,
The reason we’re here tonight:
Theo’s famous ‘same old crap’.
On Hydra we’re fond of our garbage,
Our blessing is other people’s curse,
Whether it’s pork with Roquefort cheese sauce
Or some endless appalling verse.
Some envious people complain
That the Pyrofani is cliquey and clubbish,
But we patrons cannot get enough
Of Theo’s self-confessed rubbish.
The Pyrofani is open again.
Let ignorant people scoff.
We epicurean pigs all squeal with joy
As we return to our favourite trough.
Both our languages are rich,
Each has its memorabilia,
Tonight Greek and English combine
To create skoupidophilia.
© Studio Viriditas Productions, 2016