Τετάρτη, 4 Απριλίου 2012

Nâzım Hikmet Ran








ABOUT MY POETRY

I have no silver-saddled horse to ride,
no inheritance to live on,
neither riches no real-estate --
a pot of honey is all I own.
A pot of honey
                 red as fire!

My honey is my everything.
I guard
my riches and my real-estate
-- my honey pot, I mean --
from pests of every species,
Brother, just wait...
As long as I've got
honey in my pot,
bees will come to it
                  from Timbuktu...

                  Nazim Hikmet
            Trans. by Mutlu Konuk and Randy Blasing (1993)



A SPRING PIECE LEFT IN THE MIDDLE


Taut, thick fingers punch
the teeth of my typewriter.
Three words are down on paper
                           in capitals:
SPRING
      SPRING
               SPRING...
And me - poet, proofreader,
the man who's forced to read
two thousand bad lines
   every day
      for two liras-
why,
    since spring
            has come, am I
                still sitting here
                       like a ragged
                           black chair?
My head puts on its cap by itself,
     I fly out of the printer's,
           I'm on the street.
The lead dirt of the composing room
                              on my face,
seventy-five cents in my pocket.
                          SPRING IN THE AIR...

In the barbershops
     they're powdering
            the sallow cheeks
                 of the pariah of Publishers Row.
And in the store windows
     three-color bookcovers
           flash like sunstruck mirrors.
But me,
I don't have even a book of ABC's
that lives on this street
and carries my name on its door!
But what the hell...
I don't look back,
the lead dirt of the composing room
                              on my face,
seventy-five cents in my pocket,
                 SPRING IN THE AIR...
                  *
The piece got left in the middle.
It rained and swamped the lines.
But oh! what I would have written...
The starving writer sitting on his three-thousand-page
                                        three-volume manuscript
wouldn't stare at the window of the kebab joint
but with his shining eyes would take
the Armenian bookseller's dark plump daughter by storm...
The sea would start smelling sweet.
Spring would rear up
            like a sweating red mare
and, leaping onto its bare back,
                              I'd ride it
              into the water.
Then
    my typewriter would follow me
                every step of the way.
I'd say:
           ``Oh, don't do it!
           Leave me alone for an hour...''
then
my head-my hair failing out-
            would shout into the distance:
               ``I AM IN LOVE...''
                       *
I'm twenty-seven,
she's seventeen.
``Blind Cupid,
lame Cupid,
both blind and lame Cupid
said, Love this girl,''
                              I was going to write;
                                     I couldn't say it
                                         but still can!
But if
       it rained,
if the lines I wrote got swamped,
if I have twenty-five cents left in my pocket,
                                                    what the hell...
Hey, spring is here spring is here spring
                                                  spring is here!
My blood is budding inside me!

                                      20 and 21 April 1929
                                      Nazim Hikmet
                 Trans. by Randy Blasing and Mutlu Konuk (1993)



http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/N%C3%A2z%C4%B1m_Hikmethe poem (titled as "Ölü Kızcağız" on the photo) typewritten by Nâzım Hikmet himself and the letter of Japanese children to him presenting their thanks