Waiting for the Barbarians

I have always loved this poem by C P Cavafy, about the fear and confusion of change, of the new, of having to take responsibility.

The poem has a light touch, sympathetic yet taut and uncompromising, and perfectly satisfies Ezra Pound’s definition of poetry as ‘news that stays news.’ It’s never seemed more timely. This is the best translation I think. Read it here.