my temporary disappearing act

Hi Everyone,

I will be leaving for New York soon and will be without stable internet access for a few days. There is wi-fi at the hotel I’ll be staying at till Sunday but since I won’t be in that room very often or for long durations of time, I doubt I will be able to keep abreast of your posts until after I am at a friend’s house in Elmira on Sunday evening. No doubt my inbox will be overflowing and it will take me at least a week to catch up if I ever do catch up.

I may try reblogging some older posts  while away so don’t be surprised if you see posts relating to my life in Turkey appear in the next few days. I will, though, not be in Turkey, or at least part of my heart will be but the other half of that organ will be reconnecting with family/friends in the US, a much needed exercise to rejuvenate what’s left of it.

I know some of you are under the impression I am returning for good but as life often does to us, my plans have changed and I will only be in the US for a month or so while my application for a work visa is being approved. I have recently been offered a position of editor/columnist for a Turkish newspaper and so will be writing on culture, literature, historic spots in Turkey, and politics (mostly the American election but also on Turkey from an expat’s point of view).

Most of you know I love this country and its people but also I feel a need to stay connected to my aging family/friends so even though I will be staying here, I will be returning for visits to the US frequently.

And so it goes and I go with it. Be well.

From Hsinlinpu River Bridge on the Way to Hsuancheng by Hsieh T’iao

River traffic keeps heading southwest
the ocean-bound current surges northwest
I see boats on the horizon sailing home
and trees along the river wrapped in clouds
thinking about this trip exhausts and deflates me
I’ve journeyed alone so many times
but it meets my need for a salary
and accords my interest in eremitic realms
cut off henceforth from dust and noise
surely I’ll find what brings my heart joy
although I lack a panther’s guise
I will disappear at last into the misty southern peaks

translated by Red Pine

untitled poem by T’ao Chien

Days and months never take their time.
The four seasons keep bustling each other

away. Cold winds churn lifeless branches.
Fallen leaves cover long paths. We’re frail,

crumbling more with each turning year.
Our temples turn white early, and once

your hair flaunts that bleached streamer,
the road ahead starts closing steadily in.

This house is an inn awaiting travelers,
and I yet another guest leaving. All this

leaving and leaving–where will I ever
end up? My old home’s on South Mountain.

translated by David Hinton