by Mehmet Kerem Türkcan


Shallow the rising night remains, perfecting
The forbiding stillness of introduction, musing
Full of terror and intimacy, smiling
Above what is incarnadine and unsuspecting.
The crime of superiority slowly sinks in:
Walter the he who knows the song of pondering
Wishes to fare forward from the ravening rivers
First by falling and then by flowering, withering-
Alas, he contemplates of those still suffering.
"Alistair!" he calls the ferryman swimming by the bridge,
(Whose father, ghostly, chants while his mother weeps,)
Whose relatives, in Mayfair, Victorian and rich,
Of years and silence so uninformed, so ignorant remain,
Who, to answer, trudges forward towards the amber archway,
In his ragged clothes looks up, yawns and stinks-
"Indeed I carry a few – Perhaps many, perhaps too many –"

        "Never too many, never too many!"
The Prussian envoy laughs, his cart sliding
Over the ancient roads of Ottoman Paris.
Delighted with delights, honored by tapestries, 
A bloody wine he feverishly drinks,
As the once-honored chancellor, solemny, awaits.
While we were studying the Golden Bough,
I remember, vividly, the chanting of
The romantics of the then-called Setting Sun's Age:
"Sixteenth century, Seventeenth century,
Eighteenth century, that Bloody Revolution,
Nineteenth century, many poets, many fanatics,
                        Many nothings."

There, my friend, there we had stood,
Above the ivory towers, above the jealous clouds,
And to the ancient grimoires, to the dusty tomes we talked,
Talked, and talked. In Barcelona. Park Güell was
Hard to reach; we never got to see it.
In my memories it still lives,
As something far below, something infinitely fearful,
Something so powerful and yet eternally incomplete,
Eternally old, longing for the stolen memories of a colorless rose.

You, the rope-maker of Rome, renowned painter of Les Saltimbanques,
The jugglers, bored and delayed, told me of the agonizing truth 
That, terrified of yourself and craving hope, around  the thorns
Leading to the silent mountains of primal grief, full of joy and dismay,
        You are still pursuing the silent herald of your doom.
And now what will become of us without the barbarians?
Perhaps the last age shall be the worst of all,
        Perhaps we will yet embrace the holy light of the evening sun.
                For, I guess, there is nothing else to do,
        For the likes of us and our bleak, stirring, starless nightmares,
                Blending with the ever-fading shadows of
                        Denied wonders.