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Announcing the winners of our 2020 Poems in Translation Contest in partnership with the Academy of American Poets. Read more.
from the January 2020 issue

[I speak to]

[Bi termê helbesteke mirî re]

Loneliness proves insurmountable in this haunting poem by Cihan Hesen.


I speak to
The corpse of a dead poem
I speak to
The skin of the night
I speak to
The bare fingernails of my weak hands
I speak to
The broken mirror in my dark and empty room
I speak to
Your orderly books
I speak to
Loneliness
I speak to
The loneliness of my long shadow
But the hush feeling, silence sullen-faced fate reaches my ears
I too fall silent in the fire of silence


© Cihan Hesen. By arrangement with the author. Translation © 2020 by David Shook and Zêdan Xelef. All rights reserved.

[Bi termê helbesteke mirî re]

Bi termê helbesteke mirî re
diaxivim
Bi çermê laşê şevê re
diaxivim
Bi neynokên zuha yên destên xwe yên sist re diaxivim
Bi neyinka şikestî ya odeya xwe ya tarî û vala re dixavim
Bi pirtûkên te yên danehevkirî re
diaxivim
Bi tenêtiyê re diaxivim
Bi tenêtiya bejna siya xwe û te re
diaxivim
Lê huşbûna hîsa bêdengiya narvîna rûtirş tê guhê min
Ez jî di agirê bêdengiyê de bêdeng dibim

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