Wednesday, October 24, 2007

Ali Bilir: Turkish Poet



BABAZULA: Turkish Folk Music

Two poems by Ali Bilir, from a collection of poetry

translated from Turkish by M. Ali Sulutas, with help
from R. Bruce Bickley, Jr. and Susan Bright ,
Forthcoming
from Plain View Press.

Poetry


I might have written
passionate lines —
as if dying,
God lent his hand
letting fall
the magic of language
from his tongue.

I might have written
poems of my suffering
people, an image
pungent with carnation
and sweat.

Where am I now —
the poem: a word
melting the ice
on my tongue.


Cyclamen

My grandmother's swing
sways on and on
in the arms of death.
We travel to the utmost
edge of the coast —

a flower
cool to the touch
as the mountainous cliff.
A sailor's lantern
does not light the way.
Does it shine?
Does death wait
until morning?

Is the lust of Kerem
quenched, does it
penetrate the rocks
with his love?
A pink cyclamen
heats his flesh
with the burning health
of Asli.

--

* Kerem and Asli were lovers,
one Muslem, one Christian
whose tragic love story is a favorite
subject of traveling minstrels, Asiklar —
meaning those who are in love --

poems © Ali Bilir, 2007

ALI F. BILIR

Born in 1945 in Gülnar, Mersin, Turkey. Attended the School of Medicine for a year, but graduated from the Faculty of Pharmacy, University of Istanbul, in 1969. Participated in the student and youth movements of 1968. In 1967, took a four-month adventure tour of Europe and North Africa, mainly on foot.

While practicing his profession in his own pharmacy in his home town of Gülnar, kept writing poems and short stories, which he had started doing in high school. Assumed responsibilities with cultural, social, educational, sports, and literature clubs.
His poems, short stories, and articles on certain subjects have been published in local, regional, national, and international periodicals, magazines, and journals.

Among the prizes he obtained are: 1990 Günes Magazine (Sweden) - Story, 1993 Orhan Kemal - Story, 1996 Ibrahim Yildiz - Honorable Mention for the poetry book of Göç Türküsü (Migration Ballad), 1998 Samim Kocagoz – Story, 2004 S. Avni Olez - Jury Special Prize for the poetry book of Güz Animsamalari (Autumn Reminiscences).

His published books in Turkish are: Usuyen Sicak Duslerim (My Shivering Warm Dreams) (Stories), Göç Türküsü (Migration Ballad) (Poems), Elestiriden Günceye (From Critique to Diary) (Critiques and Diaries), and Güz Animsamalari (Autumn Reminiscences) (Poems).

E-mail: alibilirf@hotmail.com

Video clip from film: Crossing the Bridge: The Sound of Instanbul


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13 Comments:

Anonymous Anonymous said...

Great stuff, thanks Susan.

DC

6:57 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Thank you so much:))
Defne Bilir, daughter of Ali Bilir

Note: The work of this poet came to us through his daughter, who lives in the US.

6:58 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Dear Susan

Ali Bilir 's country: Turkey has great poets like Nazim Hekmat and Orhan Walli.

I enjoyed Ali's poems.He is a true poet.His last name means :one who knows; one who is insighful.my parents were born in Baku , a city in Russia with Turkish language ,this is why I know Turki. Anyway ,bravo to you for discovering fine and strong poets.

Faithfully yours
Farideh Hassanzadeh-Mostafavi

12:23 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Note: I asked Defne what the video was about since I chose it for the music, and didn't know what it was. Here is her reply ---

This video is from the movie Crossing the Bridge : The Sound of Istanbul. It is Turkish -English and it is directed by Fatih Akin who is famous in the international arena. The movie shows the cultural diversity through the music in Turkey. It is a great movie and you can find it Blockbuster, Amazon, and some other places like them. It has English subtitles, and some parts are in English.

Defne Bilir

2:58 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

from Ali Bilir:

Your great help to publish my poems and your great help to edit my poems for the poetic language make me happy.


My daughter Defne has already infomred you about the story of Kerem and Asli. However, I would like to add that it is a mythological love story of a young man Kerem and a young woman Asli. This mythos is a collective product of Middle Eastern Countries. It also symbolizes a hopeless love...
Best,

8:17 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

As an additional information, Kerem and Alsi is a mythological love story of a young man Kerem and a young woman Asli. This mythos is a collective product of Middle Eastern Countries. It also symbolizes a hopeless love...

Defne

8:17 PM  
Anonymous Semire said...

I read about Ali Bilir's work through her daughter Defne, one of the sweetest people in the world. Thank you Mr. Bilir for your beautiful and inspiring poems. And thank you Defne for introducing us the work of such a great poet.

8:24 AM  
Anonymous ESRA said...

Dear uncle Ihsan.This is Esra Ozturk I hope your remember me !
I really enjoyed your poems.I belive that your book is going to be very famous and when the people read your poems,everybody is going to be fun to you.

SIZI COK OZLEDIM YAAAA.....

1:00 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Ben bir Silifke'li hemsehrin olarak cok ama cok tebrik ediyorum...

5:02 AM  
Anonymous Arzu said...

To me, the poems are the way of breathing. Thank you for giving me a fresh, colorful, and deep breath.

Arzu Gungor

3:17 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

During my painfull dissertation period, I was lookig for good literature to entertain and rest my mind. Your poems brought me the break that I needed:) and gave me a great pleasure. Thank you for the fabulous poems!!!
Aysegul Bayraktar

5:22 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

During my painfull dissertation period, I was lookig for good literature to entertain and rest my mind. Your poems brought me the break that I needed:) and gave me a great pleasure. Thank you for the fabulous poems!!!
Aysegul Bayraktar

5:27 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Dear Defne,

I appreciate and enjoy for these penetrating and touching poems. I am looking forward to reading more of Mr. Bilir’s writings.

Aysen Kose

Defne’cim, sen buradayken, babanin bir siirini okumani rica etmistim. Sende bana babanin kendi seninden sana yazdigi bir dortlugu dinletmistin. Hala kulaklarimda, ne kadar dokunakli bir siirdi! Simdi daha fazlasini okumak icin kitabin basilmasini sabirsizlikla bekliyorum. Babani ve emegi gecen herkesi can-i gonulden tebrik ederim.

8:33 PM  

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