The trees are still standing, the old benches dead and gone.
“Boris Park” is now “Freedom Park.”
Under the chestnet I just thought of you
and you alone–I mean Memet,
just you and Memet, I mean my country. . .
translated by Randy Blasing & Mutlu Konuk
5 thoughts on “I Wrote a Letter to Munevver Saying by Nazım Hikmet”
Turkey is in an uproar again, or so it appears when seen from here.
But… the trees are still standing, and will continue to stand.
There’s never a dull moment here but yes, the trees are still standing, the Bosporus still flows. . . .
Right now, there’s never a dull moment here, either. LOL
Istanbul is there to stay forever, of course, but the trees referred to in the poem are not in Istanbul but in Sofia, Bulgaria, where his wife Münevver was born. The poem was written in Bulgaria, one of the countries where Nazım Hikmet lived during his years in exile.
I don’t think anyone reading the poem would think those trees are in Istanbul. It is obvious to anyone knowing Hikmet’s life that he wrote that poem outside of Turkey. The fact, though, that they were in Sofia is interesting. What park should I go to next time I am in Sofia to see those trees?