Nothing is as it used to be by Cahit Sıtkı Tarancı

Nothing is as it used to be,
Neither am I.
I don’t care about myself for a long time,
Nor my appearance.
I walk barefoot now.
Neither flu nor cold scares me as they used to.
I have bigger problems, like everyone else, which mint and lemon are no good for.
I don’t mind the swollen tonsils relapsing every winter and spring,
I don’t eat or drink too hot or too cold, they all go by in a few days anyway.
Things go on.
Things go by.
Yet there are things that I swallow despite the pain they inflict.
Things which do not go on
Things which do not go by
I have trouble sleeping at times, but,
I don’t care about this sleeping thing anymore,
Since I’ve realized, there are things which do not disappear with sleeping anymore.

translated by Burak Tıraş

Robinson Crusoe by Cahit Sitki Taranci

Robinson, my clever Robinson
you don’t know how I envy you.
If you could only show me your island,
there I would find peace of mind.

I’ll be the ship, you be the captain.
We can unfurl the sail one morning.
The sea becomes our shadow in the sun.
The journey. And suddenly we’re at our island.

I wish you could be my interpreter,
introduce me to the fish,
to wild birds and flowers,
say to them about me: “He’s one of us.”

I know how to climb trees.
I can tell a fruit that’s ripe.
I can also manage breaking stones,
making fires, cooking food.

Robinson, understanding Robinson,
if your island hasn’t sunk yet
take me there
before the seaways close.

I Want A Country by Cahit Sitki Taranci

i want a country
let the sky be blue, the bough green, the cornfield yellow
let it be a land of birds and flowers

i want a country
let there be no pain in the head, no yearning in the heart
let there be an end to brothers’ quarrels

i want a country
let there be no rich or poor, no you and me
on winter days let everyone have house and home

i want a country
let living be like loving from the heart
if there must be complaint, let it be of death

translated by Bernard Lewis