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Poetry in Translation (CCXXIV): Orhan VELI KANIK, (1914-1950), ISTANBUL, “Fish in a Bottle of Booze”, “Peşte intr-o sticlă de brandy”

November 18th, 2013 · No Comments · Books, International Media, PEOPLE, Poetry, quotations, Translations

Poetry in Translation (CCXXIV): Orhan VELI KANIK, (1914-1950), ISTANBUL, “Fish in a Bottle of Booze”, “Peşte intr-o sticlă de brandy”

Orhan Veli Kanik

Orhan Veli Kanik


Orhan VELI KANIK
(1914, Istanbul – November 14, 1950, Istanbul)

I buy old clothes.
I buy old clothes and cut them into stars.
Music is the food of love.
I love music.

I write poetry.
I write poetry and buy old clothes.
I sell old clothes and buy music;
If I could also be a fish in a bottle of booze…

(English version by Murat Nemet-Nejat)

"... fish in a bottle of booze..."

“… fish in a bottle of booze…”

Peşte intr-o sticlă de brandy
Orhan VELI KANIK

(1914 – 1950, Istanbul)

Cumpăr straie vechi.
Cumpăr haine vechi şi le croiesc in stele.
Muzica este hrana iubirii.
Ador muzica.

Scriu versuri.
Scriu versuri şi cumpăr haine vechi.
Vând haine vechi ca să cumpăr muzică.
O, dac-aş putea, doar, să fiu un peşte intr-o sticlă de brandy …

(English version by
Constantin ROMAN, London,
© 2013, Copyright Constantin ROMAN)

Orhan Veli Book SHORT BIO: Kanık, more often referred to as Orhan Veli, was the leading modernist in Turkish poetry in the 1940’s. Few literary upheavals have had an impact comparable to that produced by the stylistic and substantive innovations he made in Turkish poetry, a tradition which dates back to the 8th century A.D. (Even earlier references in Chinese sources allude to translations from Turkish poetry in the 2nd century B.C.) Within the decade or so that spanned his career, Orhan Veli revolutionized not only the form and content but also the function of Turkish poetry.
Orhan Veli Kanık was the “enfant terrible” of the Turkish literary world, during the 1940s. His vitality had seemed indestructible, his personality a catalytic force on the Turkish scene. Kanık’s poems reaffirmed faith in the sheer joy of being alive. Some of his lines were so well-known that they had become household phrases. The lucid colloquialism, the humor and verve, the effective but gentle satire of his verse were such celebrations of life that Kanık and death seemed irreconcilable. After a moving funeral ceremony, Orhan Veli Kanık was buried on a hill overlooking the Bosphorus as though in death, as in life, he would be “listening to Istanbul” and rejoicing in its beauty.
Kanık was the leading modernist in Turkish poetry in the 1940s. Few literary upheavals have had an impact comparable to that produced by the stylistic and substantive innovations he made in Turkish poetry, a tradition which dates back to the 8th century A.D. (Even earlier references in Chinese sources allude to translations from Turkish poetry in the 2nd century B.C.) Within the decade or so that spanned his career, Orhan Veli revolutionized not only the form and content, but also the function of Turkish poetry.
(extract from: http://www.orhanveli.net/talathalman/introduction.html)

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