“Haxion Esti Anagnosma Tetarto” (“Worthy It Is: Fourth Reading”), “The Field with the Nettles,” by Odysseus Elytis:
On one of those sunless days of that winter, a Saturday morning, cars and motorcycles surrounded Lefteris's small tenement, with the tin windows and the open sewers. And with wild voices ánthropoi with leaden faces and hair straight like straw came. And they ordered all men to gather at the field with the nettles. And they were armed head to toe, the mouths of their guns facing low to the side of the crowd. And a great fright came over the children, as it so happened, almost all of them had some secret in their pocket or their psyche. But there was no other way, and, giving honor to their necessity, [they] took their place in the line, and the ánthropoi with leaden faces, hair straight like straw, and short black shoes unfolded barbed wire around them. And they cut the clouds in two, until sleet started falling, and jaws found it difficult to keep teeth where they belonged, so they would not leave or break.
Then from the other side slowly appeared The One with the Erased Face, who raised a finger and the hours shivered on the large clock of the angels. And whomever he happened to stand in front of, others would grab by the hair and drag on the ground, stepping on him. Until the moment came to stand in front of Lefteris. But he did not move. He only raised his eyes slowly and got them at once so far away—far into his future—and the other felt the jolt and leaned back in danger of falling. And enraged, he made a motion to lift the black cloth from his face so he could spit right onto his face. But Lefteris still did not move.
Right at that moment, the Great Foreigner, the one who was following with three chevrons on his collar, resting his hands on his midriff, sneered: there, he said, there are the men who want to change the course of the world! And without knowing, the poor wretch, that he was speaking the truth, he struck him on the face with his whip three times. For a third time Lefteris did not move. Then, blinded with the little effect that his power had on him, the other one, not knowing what he was doing, pulled out the revolver and blasted him on his right ear.
And the children were very frightened, and the ánthropoi with leaden faces and hair straight as straw and short black shoes turned to wax. Because the shacks came and went, and at places the tar paper fell and there appeared far away, behind the sun, women crying, kneeling on an empty field, full of nettles and black thick blood. While the great clock of the angels struck precisely twelve o'clock.