Nazim Hikmet

Yasamak bir agaç gibi, tek ve hür,
Ve bir orman gibi kardesesine,
Bu hasret bizim!

To live like a tree, lonely and free
To live as brothers like trees in a forest,
That dream is ours!

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  • Denizin üstünde ala bulut
    Yüzünde gümüs gemi
    Içinde sari balik
    Dibinde mavi yosun

    Kiyida bir çiplak adam
    Durmus düsünür

    Bulut mu olsam?
    Gemi mi yoksa?
    Balik mi olsam?
    Yosun mu yoksa?

    Ne o, ne o, ne o

    Deniz olunmali, oglum!

  • Above the sea the multicoloured cloud
    On the sea the silver ship
    Inside the sea the yellow fish
    At the bottom of the sea the mauve weed

    In front of it a naked man
    Stands and thinks

    Should I be the cloud?
    Why not the ship?
    Should I be the fish?
    Why not the weed?

    Nothing of that

    You must be the sea my boy!
    With its cloud,
    With its ship,
    With its fish,
    With its weed.

Try to read aloud this poem in the original language. Turkish is a ringing, very melodious language with a great concision . "So many things in two words?" Monsieur Jourdain says (Molière , Le Bourgeois Gentillhomme, act IV sc 4)

Nazim Hikmet's poetry is of course deeply rooted in the turkish culture whose painfull step to liberty and moderniy he decribes.Nazim is first of all a poet of revolt, justice and fraternity who speaks to the whole mankind.

Purists will notice that particular writing forms of turkish language (i without point, s with cedilla, g with uper mark) are here missing. I don't know yet how to write them with my text editor. But it'll be done probably... sometime. If you know a better or nicer translation of this poem or if you accept to correct my imperfect english, thank you to write it to me.

Sinan Köksoy proposes a very interresting website about Nazim Hikmet (in turkish only for the moment) with a lot of poems.

It's at