We’re celebrating National Poetry Month, spotlighting the work of several contemporary Greek poets. This week, meet Greek-American poet Mary Houmis-Diab.
National Poetry Month 2017: Celebrating Greek Poets
Welcome to our latest series, in honor of National Poetry Month,celebrating the work of Greek poets.
From Sappho to Ritsos, Greeks have always had a way with words. In celebration of National Poetry Month, we have collected some delightful and moving poems by contemporary Greek poets. We’ll spotlight a different writer each week. We hope you enjoy this series.
This week, we present Mary Houmis-Diab. Mary selected the following poem, “Moondust and Tears”, because it’s become a fan favorite– it’s the most requested poem at her readings. She said she wrote it “as she dreamt it,” after her husband passed away in 1969. She said it resonates most with people who have lost their partner in life.
“Moondust and Tears” by Mary Houmis-Diab
is that moondust on my pillow
is your fragrance in the air
do I hear your gentle breathing
are you in my room somewhere
as you’re reaching to embrace me
softly whispering my name
do you touch my breasts and kiss me
set my aching heart aflame
if I waken will you vanish
like a phantom in the night
leave me trembling and longing
for your arms to hold me tight
if I slumber will you love me
like you did so long ago
with a sweet and tender rhythm
only you and I could know
are those teardrops on my pillow
is there sadness in the air
do I hear the lonely beating
of a broken heart somewhere
Related: National Poetry Month: Greek Poets – Lia Siomou
Meet Mary Houmis-Diab
Mary Houmis-Diab hails from Steubenville, OH, but calls Chicago home. She is a first generation Greek-American, and traces her roots to the island of Chios. Mary developed a passion for poetry, when as a child, her mother would read poems to her, as well as nursery rhymes.
She came to Chicago to pursue opportunities. For a time, Mary worked for the Greek National Tourism Organization, in their Chicago office, and for the State of Illinois in Ethnic Affairs. She has attended classes at Columbia College.
A prolific writer, Mary has published short stories, and two chapbooks of poetry. For years, she wrote a travel column, called “Trains, Planes, Boats, and Camels”, for What’s Happening newspapers. Her interviews with Greek restaurant owners for The Restaurateur were wildly popular. Mary was a contributor to the former Greek Press, and several other publications. Most recently, she published her first novel, All Kinds of Love, (under the pen name Maraki), set in Ohio and Chios. It’s now available on Amazon.
Connect with Mary Houmis-Diab: Facebook