The Lonely Path of Yannis Ritsos, by Christos Antoniou, PhD in Philology, poet:Ritsos, as is well known, from the very beginning explicitly and steadily connected himself and his poetry to the vision of the communist revolution, with the ideal of a socialist society; this surely is the first thing we need to keep in mind when trying to approach his poetry, in fact, the same way as we believe the Greek Revolution is strongly associated with Kalvos’s poetry and Alexandria with Cavafy’s, the communist revolution and the cause of the left is associated with Ritsos’s poetry.He joined the Communist Party of Greece and remained a member until the end of his life. This conscription resulted in many consequences for him. From 1948, from the time of the civil war in Greece to April 1967 and the dictatorship of the four colonels, the poet of Romiosini was exiled for very long periods of time to various locations: Lemnos, Makronisos, Ai-Strati, Yiaros, Leros, and finally in 1968 he was placed under house arrest in Karlovasi, Samos. He spent all this time in deprivation, under endless interrogations and stress, he was sick, isolated, deprived of basic human rights. Later in life he will write:Our only writings: three words:Makronisos, Yiaros and Lerosand if one day our verse seem clumsyjust remember they were writtenunder the nose of the guardsand with the spear always at our side.YANNIS RITSOS, Master of Dramatic Monologues, by Chryssa Nikolakis, theologean, poet, writer, literary critic:Yannis Ritsos, truly a multitalented poet, used a lot of different ways of structuring his work: one format was the dramatic monologue. He wrote numerous poems using this format; his heroes were historical or mythological names as well as characters from daily life. All the masterpieces written in that format were published in one collective volume which he named Fourth Dimension. Evidently his most famous of all those was The Moonlight Sonata. Here, in this volume II of translations including six dramatic monologues: A Dog in the Night, Public Garden, The Bridge, Philoctetes, Ismene, and Phaedra.Ritsos’s mastery is evident in the poem A Dog in the Night when he begins his story of a dog with a reference to the dog's master. He first uses the word κύριος‚ (master) un-capitalized before shifting a few lines further to Κύριος, signifying a shift from the relationship between a dog and its master to that between a human being and the divine. This theocentric approach is evident when he invokes the image of of “his Lord” as existing in the persona's thought, in his inner voice, and in his search for the divine presence after a struggle with betrayal and death:full of lifecarrying the image of his Lord in his eyesseeing the image of his Lord in everything:recognizing Him.Manolis Aligizakis, Cretan, author, poet, translator:When Yannis Ritsos's 'Moonlight Sonata' was published in France in 1961 the famous surrealist poet Louis Aragon called Ritsos the best poet in the world. Having read and studied the works of innumerable poets over the years, I have concluded that Aragon was right. I would also add that not only was Ritsos the greatest poet of his own time, he truly is the greatest poet ever. Not only for his colossal volume of work but for his expressiveness, his crystal-clear images, and the unique way he sees through his personal lens. His keen eye presents the reader with anything and everything pertaining to human life in such excruciating detail, with such amazing clarity, and in such beautiful poetics as no other poet has ever accomplished. Only a poet with these gifts could capture such an image as the following:The sea, the sun, the trees. And again, the trees, the sun, the sea. Pay attention:in this reversed repetition,the sun is still the center like lust is the center of the body.