…reminiscing our beloved through poetry…

Welcome, dear reader! Also today, I am sharing with you a new poem. This one comes to you as one of my three contributions for the January 2015 issue of The Year of the Poet – the monthly book series published by Inner Child Press, Ltd. of which I have informed you last Sunday. I want to hope that you will come back next week to accompany me for yet another one. My best wishes for your new week!

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“The Twist” and Tunç dayım*

 

a pre-natal fascination it must have been

not only for him, for me too, when on my own

lured by the unheard-of piper’s glamorous tune

coveting a First World culture’s tempo-precision

falling into the magic of his feet’s swing-succession

 

1960s, for pity’s sake!

i, a mere wonder-detecting-eyed toddler

he, a tall cool-dancing swift-footed prince

with an affable smile on his handsome face

removing remarks from his balding greyed head

laughing hard at his pants for their bowlegged dent

those “futbolcu bacakları”* are insured, his pride would allege

for a rare high amount, and upon invitation at that!

by whom? we never learned enough to pledge

 

in 1941, awing the world, Chubby Checker gets born

Tunç dayım had thus far been moving fairly along

to witness the year 1960 for an album’s dramatic release

extracting joy from his music-filled youth of disease

“The Twist” had arrived – an all-American song

competing against his magical feet so strong

inside his shiny all-American shoes

 

that year saw in me a toddling and toodling little fire

my often sickly eyes lain on the twists and turns of his legs

leaving me behind in my sick-bed within a safe distance

frequenting his visits in sets of carnaval-colored attire

to balance my weakness with his weakened substance

 

in 1970s, self-centered-to-the-limit was i

the world-is-solely-about-me-all me-i was i

he – sentenced to an early death at birth

danced in grace to his reserved time’s drum

taking me always to a felt-deeply-inside-mirth

at each of my moments of the slightest glum

having lived with us for years when young

an attentive brother to me is what he had become

his selfless love and care had since often been sung

from me for him however, there was not a thing to come

 

he died, we learned afterward – on the stairways to his office

one late night in his attempt to rush to answer a call

 

late 1970s

1980s

1990s

2000 to the present year

the youngest and a most precious darling of the Erguens

gets forgotten

by me

the universe-turns-around-me-i of me

 

then a friend’s public post the other day

lends me a ticket to that now valued past

its stub shouting a valid grist,

“Come on, baby, let’s do the twist!”

Liked.

Shared as well.

In my chamber’s core canal.

 

“Take me by my little hand and go like this.”

Once more. To tell me you forgive me

for forgetting you this long.

Your brother is among us still,

caring for me since you have left.

And i…

have learned,

have finally learned

not to let him slide by

while he is among the living yet.

 

*”dayım” equals “my uncle from the mother’s side” and “futbolcu bacakları” means “legs of a succer player” in Turkish, my native tongue. Crooked legs in men used to receive a light-hearted description while I was growing up in Turkey, succer being the country’s national sport and one that supposedly caused men the less-than-straight look in their lower body. This younger uncle had been a succer player since his very early ages, and always proudly referred to his legs under this common excuse, while he would don a huge sneaky smile for those of his happiest childhood times.

© hülya n. yılmaz, December 16, 2014

 

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