Monday, August 1, 2011

another poem

Tomorrow I have the first section of my prelim, in other words it's going to be a 24 hour writing marathon. What do I do as preparation tonight? I translate a mystic poem from Turkish to English. Ha ha I bet you did not see that coming ^_^.
This poem is by Yunus Emre, a mystic folk poet. What he is searching for in the poem is not his beloved as you might think but the creator, the light, the knowledge. Sufism has a beautiful philosophy, to which I cannot do justice here. Basically it is the search for the divine within oneself and in all creation. It is about learning to travel (to live) until the destination (death, or being one with the creator) from a master. This poem is one of my all time favorites. I hope you enjoy it. I'm sure there are better translations but below is my humble and rather loose translation.

In the last section the poet mentions his name, which was the convention for folk poets. And Majnun is the character in the story of Layla and Majnun. As I was translating, I was listening to an adaptation of this poem as a folk rock song. Hope you enjoy the song too.




 
Ben yürürüm yana yana
Aşk boyadı beni kana
Ne âkilem ne divane
Gel gör beni aşk neyledi

I wander consumed by internal fire
With blood love spattered me 
I'm neither sane nor insane 
Come and see what love has done to me

Gâh eserim yeller gibi
Gâh tozarım yollar gibi
Gâh akarım seller gibi
Gel gör beni aşk neyledi

Now and then I breeze and storm like the winds 
Now and then I ramble and roll like the roads 
Now and then I brawl and overflow like the floods
Come and see what love has done to me

Akar suların çağlarım
Dertli ciğerim dağlarım
Şeyhim anuban ağlarım
Gel gör beni aşk neyledi

 I flow in your rivers
I cauterize my troubled heart
I cry for my guide
Come and see what love has done to me

Ya elim al kaldır beni 
Ya vaslına erdir beni
Çok ağlattın güldür beni
Gel gör beni aşk neyledi

Oh my hand heave me
 Oh let me arrive the destination
You made me cry so much make me laugh for once 
Come and see what love has done to me

Ben yürürüm ilden ile
Şeyh anarım dilden dile
Gurbette halim kim bile
Gel gör beni aşk neyledi

I wander from land to land 
I call for the guide in many languages
Who would know my travails away from home 
Come and see what love has done to me

Mecnun oluban yürürüm
Ol yâri düşte görürüm
Uyanıp melûl olurum
Gel gör beni aşk neyledi

I wander like Majnun 
I see my beloved in my dreams
I wake up and plunge into deep gloom 
Come and see what love has done to me

Miskin Yunus biçareyim
Baştan ayağa yareyim
Dost elinde avareyim
Gel gör beni aşk neyledi

Wretched Yunus I'm helpless 
I'm covered in wounds from head to toe
I keep wandering for the love of my guide/friend
Come and see what love has done to me

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