Thursday, January 1, 2009

Two poems by Nazim Hikmet

Because of you
every day is a slice of melon, smelling of a delicious world
Because of you
every fruit stretches to my hands as though I were made of sun
Because of you I collect honey from hope alone.
The beating of my heart is because of you.
Because of you, even during my worst nights
the Anatolian kilim smiles down from the wall.

Because of you, reaching the end of my road
into the city, I rested in a rose garden.
And because of you I’m not letting in Death,
who’s put on his softest slippers and is at the door,
singing gentle summons to great comfort.


My soul
softly shut your eyes
and as if sinking deeply into water
naked and white, enter sleep
the most beautiful dream awaits you
so go to sleep...

My soul,
softly shut your eyes
let yourself go, as if you were on my lap
and sleep,
in sleep don’t forget me
just sleep...
softly shut your eyes
your green hazel eyes
and sleep, my soul,
go to sleep.

You’re above
in the budding branches
your green eyes full of sun
your lips covered with honey
I’m beneath the tree
with a foot in the grave
I’ll be gone long before you,
and you’ll remain, growing old without me.

[translated by Nick Benson and Emine Azak]

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