Poetry International Poetry International
Poem

Gonca Özmen

THE MOON

to the one with “eyes of mineral”

 

I

I spoke of these – not to you – but to a woman with a starred forehead
Once upon a time we were reciprocal we were symmetrical
Her words we untangled they were the joints of my knees
We even ripened as two cherries on one branch
We lay down to we awoke from sweaty dreams a tomb in our voice
We let our blood flow each and every part of us
We even – though you won’t believe it – appeared in court
The Verdict on Behalf of the Turkish People:
Let your existence be no gift to anything at all
 

II

I heard of these, not from you, but from a woman of much spice
We were as warm to each other as vests just stripped off


III

I had this squinting woman over there read these, not you
We even stood side by side to form a line of verse
As resentful as cats who’d spilled milk
While in groans and grumbles we licked our wounds
We were even known to haunt a forest


IV 

At night we were neigbouring leaves, though you won’t believe it
In ourselves we were an undervine, a thrill in the arbour, a fence of mourning,
A hole in tights, a broken off button, a ripped trouser leg
In ourselves we were the fate of a never opened garden
The consistency of tart apples, though you won’t believe it 

More truth in our huddling in ourselves than you standing in yours

DE MAAN

voor “haar ogen als mineralen” *


I

Ik besprak dit allemaal - niet met jullie,
Maar met een vrouw met een glanzend voorhoofd
Vroeger waren we omgekeerd evenredig elkaars spiegelbeeld
Haar woorden, die we ontleedden, bezorgden mij knikkende knieën
We rijpten zelfs als Siamese kersen aan een tak
Stonden badend in het zweet op uit onze dromen met een tombe in onze stem
Lieten het bloed van top tot teen door ons heen stromen
We moesten geloof het of niet zelfs voor het gerecht verschijnen
Het vonnis ‘In Naam van het Turkse Volk’ luidde:
Jullie bestaan mag voor niets en niemand een geschenk zijn 

 

II

Ik hoorde dit allemaal - niet van jullie,
Maar van een vurige vrouw
Voor elkaar waren we zo warm als pas uitgetrokken hemdjes

 

III

Ik liet dit allemaal lezen - niet aan jullie,
maar aan die vrouw met scheve ogen
Naast elkaar vormden we zelfs een dichtregel
En doken we zelfs onder in een bos
Bedremmeld als een betrapt kind
Terwijl we grommend onze wonden likten

 

IV

Geloof het of niet, maar 's nachts waren wij dichtbij een blad
Bij een wijnstok, het genot van een prieel, een palissade van rouw
Een gat in een kous, een gebroken knoop, een gescheurde hiel
Bij het lot van een ongeopende tuin
De consistentie van een zure appel, geloof het of niet

Dat wij dicht bij onszelf bleven
Was waarachtiger dan dat jullie bij jezelf stilstonden

 

 

 

AY

                                                       “gözleri maden”e


I

Ben bunları -sizinle değil-
Alnı akıtmalı bir kadınla söyleşmiştim
İşteştik bir zaman birbirimize bakışımlıydık
Onun sözleri, çözdüydük dizlerimin bağıydı
Bir dalda iki kiraz olmuşluğumuz bile var
Terli rüyalara yatmış kalkmıştık sesimizdeki yatırla
Kan akıtmıştık oramızdan buramızdan
Mahkemeye inanmazsınız çıkmışlığımız bile var
Türk Milleti Adına Karar:
Varlığınız armağan olmasın hiçbir şeylere

II

Ben bunları -sizden değil-
Baharatı çok bir kadından dinlemiştim
Az önce çıkarılmış atletler kadar ılıktık birbirimize


III

Ben bunları -size değil-
Ötedeki o şehla kadına okuttum
Yan yana durup bir dize olmuşluğumuz bile var
Sütünü dökmüş kediler kadar dargın
Gurultularla yalarken yaralarımızı
Bir ormana dadanmışlığımız bile var


IV

Biz gecede inanmazsınız yakın yaprak
Biz bizde asma altı, çardak keyfi, yas çiti
Delik çorap, kopuk düğme, yırtık paça
Biz bizde açılmamış bahçenin yazgısı
Mayhoş elma kıvamı inanmazsınız

Bizim bizde kaldığımız
Sizin sizde durduğunuzdan esaslı

Close

THE MOON

to the one with “eyes of mineral”

 

I

I spoke of these – not to you – but to a woman with a starred forehead
Once upon a time we were reciprocal we were symmetrical
Her words we untangled they were the joints of my knees
We even ripened as two cherries on one branch
We lay down to we awoke from sweaty dreams a tomb in our voice
We let our blood flow each and every part of us
We even – though you won’t believe it – appeared in court
The Verdict on Behalf of the Turkish People:
Let your existence be no gift to anything at all
 

II

I heard of these, not from you, but from a woman of much spice
We were as warm to each other as vests just stripped off


III

I had this squinting woman over there read these, not you
We even stood side by side to form a line of verse
As resentful as cats who’d spilled milk
While in groans and grumbles we licked our wounds
We were even known to haunt a forest


IV 

At night we were neigbouring leaves, though you won’t believe it
In ourselves we were an undervine, a thrill in the arbour, a fence of mourning,
A hole in tights, a broken off button, a ripped trouser leg
In ourselves we were the fate of a never opened garden
The consistency of tart apples, though you won’t believe it 

More truth in our huddling in ourselves than you standing in yours

THE MOON

to the one with “eyes of mineral”

 

I

I spoke of these – not to you – but to a woman with a starred forehead
Once upon a time we were reciprocal we were symmetrical
Her words we untangled they were the joints of my knees
We even ripened as two cherries on one branch
We lay down to we awoke from sweaty dreams a tomb in our voice
We let our blood flow each and every part of us
We even – though you won’t believe it – appeared in court
The Verdict on Behalf of the Turkish People:
Let your existence be no gift to anything at all
 

II

I heard of these, not from you, but from a woman of much spice
We were as warm to each other as vests just stripped off


III

I had this squinting woman over there read these, not you
We even stood side by side to form a line of verse
As resentful as cats who’d spilled milk
While in groans and grumbles we licked our wounds
We were even known to haunt a forest


IV 

At night we were neigbouring leaves, though you won’t believe it
In ourselves we were an undervine, a thrill in the arbour, a fence of mourning,
A hole in tights, a broken off button, a ripped trouser leg
In ourselves we were the fate of a never opened garden
The consistency of tart apples, though you won’t believe it 

More truth in our huddling in ourselves than you standing in yours

Sponsors
Gemeente Rotterdam
Nederlands Letterenfonds
Stichting Van Beuningen Peterich-fonds
Ludo Pieters Gastschrijver Fonds
Hendrik Muller fonds
Lira fonds
J.E. Jurriaanse
Literature Translation Institute of Korea
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