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Attila Ilhan, Poems translated into English, Oct 2007

Attila Ilhan, Poems translated into English, Oct 2007

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Seven poems of Attila Ilhan, translated from Turkish into English
Seven poems of Attila Ilhan, translated from Turkish into English

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Published by: Mrs Nilufer Mizanoglu Reddy on May 30, 2009
Copyright:Attribution Non-commercial

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07/21/2013

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ATTILA ILHAN (1925-2005)POEMS
Translated into English byNilűfer Mizanoğlu Reddy
 
ANCIENT MARINE FOLK 
we were fifteenover the coffinof the dead manheave ho a bottle of rumsatan and drink made us sink heave ho a bottle of rumover there a strange pebble chantssea shepherds have driven their flocks into the open seamussels’ eyes have harlot’s blue pupilsin the boundless west green galleons of timewere sighted unforgettable and greendrenched in bloodin glittery splendor you can hear the ancient marine folk if you listenin the kinky marine tavernsthe kinky marine folk spanish songs italian wineand as if you were god you invent cursesfrom the fifteenth meridianto the twentieth by yourself you invent international cursesand from the libra mastyou god of curses splashings unknown thingsyou god of lost treasuresyou won’t look back nor spit to the windunless black sails are hoisted on the admiral’s own mastschaste breezes will not kindle sparksin your pirate’s eyesunless you get used tochewing the rain and the tobacco
 
I have not forgotten the mediterraneanI have plunged in the flames I cried with passionthe joy to createand to be created reverberated in heavensand the prayers opened like enormous sailswhen one looked three crescents spread out all at oncehayrettin’s songs flew like falcons from his armswindswept barefoot mariners of the algerian captainwere holding messina and septe straits and all the otherssurrounding the caravans of shipsthey burned them upla-ilahe-il-allah but your festivities your troubles will not be forsaken by the stars in every constellationand the lighthouses in every isthmusthen you would go to rome with hanniballong before that phoenicians carried the alphabet and the glasswhen dragons breathed sea monsters appearedthe ghost of a genoese galley slave in rhodes castlehis legs in shacklesthe whiplash on his back and latin songs pour forthfrom the ships of antoniusyou areunforeseen unforgettable unbearable and deepas roguish as a deckhand or the mustache of a sailor the wind is blowing unconstrained from all sidesyour centuries old pirate fateis tattooed on your arms and on your boundless chestsangel-faced mermaids and slippery dolphinsin green and glittery specklesso what you understand about this worldis the same what children understandalthough time is getting older you are still a childyou are the ancient graveyard of pirates and sailorsyou are the graveyard of hayrettin’s songswith your majestic waves you are the big ocean’sstar studded multitudes of plankton life

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