Tag Archives: Poetry

“torn”

how can you even begin to understand
when all you ever saw was a callous-hearted photograph
of a savagely soul-emptied land
or grasp the devoted dedicated commitment of its people
to their justly attained long-labored traditions and customs
cradled within the tenderly nurtured gentle realm
of their age-old civilization?

how can you even begin to conceive
where these precious fellow-souls
gather the countless pieces of their insides
after witnessing the slaughter of their babies
or what happens to that infant-innocence
if it survives the annihilation of its elderly
long enough to avow that it will further survive?

why don’t you look around
can you really not see
the multitudes of suffering abound?

torn inside and out
you still just go about . . .

“Business as usual” rules, you say?
better yet, the passé overrules
any likely change in our busy-ness
and stays put on its mighty swing set
to carefreely sway its mundane existence away
from the highest high of a ceiling
to the deepest hole in the ground

© hülya n. yılmaz, June 31, 2018

This poem was my contribution to Palestine. A Conscious Poetic Offering, an anthology of global endeavors, compiled by Gail Weston Shazor, the Director of Anthologies at Inner Child Press International, soon to be published by Inner Child Press International. Nizar Sartawi, the Director of International Relations at Inner Child Press International -educator, poet, literary translator shown in the picture, has kindly translated the poems I have read on various occasions in or near Amman, Jordan into Arabic. My special thanks go in abundance to all these much-cherished individuals.

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[Photo Credit: William S. Peters Sr.]

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Family

love was the guest of honor
it outshone the burning sun
the light of each soul glowed
the embrace was immense
warm kind giving and sweet

yet my blood family had passed away long ago

how ignorant of me
to think love’s eternal gift
had left me once and for all
the exceptional family i carry love-genes from
the precious one that walks on Earth with mine
the unconditional one friends pour into my soul
have always been there while i mourned

love was the guest of honor
it outshone the burning sun
the light of each soul glowed
the embrace was immense
warm kind giving and sweet

and i began an incredible journey
among my beloved’s family

how could i not

love was the guest of honor
it outshone the burning sun
the light of each soul glowed
the embrace was immense
warm kind giving and sweet
© hülya n. yılmaz, 7.15.2018

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a poem-trilogy

In recent times, I have been experimenting with my poems as far as their thematic bond whenever a demand was in place. The year of 2018 alone has now seen my poetry in connection with one another. The latest example are my three poems below, all of which will appear in the July issue of the international anthology, The Year of the Poet made available in print to readers every month. This month’s focal civilization was “Oceania”, and the following poetic narrative is what dictated my contribution:

entitled, 1

does the name “Cook” James Cook
as in Captain James Cook that is
sound familiar to you
no, you say?
how can that be!
he has a monument in his name you see
for the monumental service he has done in 1774
he proudly did vandalize torture butcher and colonize
the natives of Vanuatu Islands of 500 BCE
whitened them ever so graciously with a new name
The New Hebrides . . .

you get it of course
there was nothing “new” about the host-land
up until that year ambushed it mercilessly
then . . . there were no more
the same as they were before

the white legacy

isn’t it just grand?

entitled, 2

Kudos to the British!
they worked also 19th century
to their advantage
they took home the bounty
yet once again

the poor unknowing Spanish!
a rushed glimpse of the Tuvalu islands
did not suffice to make them stay

Alas!

they thus failed to discover
the land’s richness in phosphate
mined by the islanders
profits fed-exed to the Commonwealth

entitled, 3

there once was an island called “Nauru”
1,400 people lived on it in peace
they spoke their native tongue
they had their native culture
phosphate was in abundance . . .

the year was 1843 then

45 years later

only 900 survived

together with their phosphate

their language and culture?
out the window they went . . .

© hülya n yılmaz, June 15, 2018

~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~

Related Links/Readings:

Vanuatu.History.People.Location
Tuvalu.Culture.History.People.Facts
Nauru.Land.People.Culture.Economy.Society.History

 

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a poem with no title

tens of vultures huddled
playing phone tag with those in the farthest distance
they all heard it now . . .
breathing bodies lain there to feast on
tiny unprotected not-yet-knowing-how to-walk bodies
with each of their soon-to be-bloodied cells crying
their half-closed fear-laden eyes searching
for their mommies and daddies
while their fading whispers
hold on to their last hope

. . .

other adults would come
and when they do
their hurts will be no longer
first a warm calming hug
everything is okay-kind of a-hug
then their aching tummies will be filled
on top of a heated receiving blanket
they will fall into a sweet slumber
and see their mummies and daddies in their dreams

. . .

not so at all!

get ready you dearest little souls
too many grown-ups want you to die
but before you pass on to the yonder
which they themselves dread to death
throughout their miserable lives
know that there is not just one of them out and about
plenty of them play hide and seek all around
they come in different shapes and sizes
only their heart fits under the same reptiles’ rock
because they all don it in their rotting unified inside
a post-birth malfunction that is one of a kind . . .

© hülya n yılmaz, June 20, 2018

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[Photo Credit: Self, June 12.2018 ~ Location: Winslow, New Jersey]

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*”instead of . . .”

i surprised him

the second he spotted me behind his mommy
his little darling body became a dance all by itself
his forever-smiling face made room for giggles
many many giggles

then joyous ‘come on, grandma!’s

hand in hand
eyes locked on mine
my little enormous sunshine!

‘you come to anne car’
ending in 1/3 of a question mark
with my yes already housed in his brightly shining heart

leaving his pre-school . . .
amid the two grown women’s chatter
as untainted as any voice can ever be:
“I love you, grandma!”

i love him so
his little sister too
that each of my exchanges with them
takes my breath away

and i think . . .
together we all get to breathe again
laughing
crying
eating
drinking
sleeping
celebrating
loving and being loved again

yet on the many other ends of our world
because of a few power-fed sick minds
and their equally loveless bribe-filled grinds
children die
die die die

and die again

*This poem was posted here once before. When I recently got to see my grandson and my granddaughter after a long period of time had passed, I could not help myself but re-visit that most memorable day.

From my newest book of poetry:
Aflame. Memoirs in Verse. Inner Child Press (August 2, 2017)
Available at inner child press
Also available at inner child press are the following:
Trance (December 12, 2013), my tri-lingual poetry book with my own translations between English, German and Turkish, and
An Aegean Breeze of Peace, a book of poetry that I have co-authored with
Demetrios Trifiatis (October 12, 2015)

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“is what we call ours, ours?”

my life in Turkey was multi-colored
brown and dark brown were the most favorite hues
served inside delicately painted frailly little cups
they were devoured by the dearest indulging
who passed the age-limit
with flying collars

thanks to a multitude of gatherings
i watched joyfully time and time again
many rites of simple pleasure
and observed how my ancestors consumed
the thick strong- and bitter-looking taste
sweetened only by a delicious mix
of laughter-typhoons and mouth-watering
gentlest lullaby-like mesmerizing-ly gorgeous
collective-art of masterful story-telling
often a jamboree of exotically aromatic spices
materialized right before all the senses of the gathered
while they sip by sip went on to starvingly inhale
the short-lived though lastingly multi-layered hot vapor
that oozed through the syrup-attired
ready-to-be-painted-already walls
of our little but heart-heated home
all the way to my behind-the-doors dancing steps
then into my heart’s vast collection of inestimable memories

Turkish coffee
Ah!

soon after i graduated
to my loved ones’ passable grade in age
i accumulated all around me
an army of those intricately hand-made
ceramic art pieces . . . one by one
not even the slightest trace was left behind
of the dark matter that once belonged to their insides

worse!
i started to call them “mine”
resorting however with no waste of a second
to olden plausible lessons in my own defense
i riposted to my inner voice:
Turkish coffee was after all
solely in the custody of the Turks
besides . . .
everyone in my familiar
but also foreign vicinities knew
how it long ago was baptized as “ours”
having held on to the reign
for countless memorable years
so powerfully controlled
that the world still speaks of them today!

then . . .

i became
an older grown-up
and re-conceptualized:
what if that knock-out flavor
which offered itself to us to savor
and those magically aromatic spices in it
were never ours to claim as “ours”
but rather invented and toiled over
by civilizations of the long-forgotten past
not unlike the one of the Sabaeans whose Ma’rib
the hub-city of their regime’s middle epoch
that is largely claimed to have earned its fame
not only for its spectacularly built temples
and other monuments but also maybe more so
for its agricultural prosperity

“Turkish” coffee?
“Turkish” spices
that enhance its perception?

what if its creation
had nothing to do with Turkish-ness

what if its construct
was rooted in the Sabaean ancestry

what if . . .

what if
we stopped to care
about things so mundane
and would re-learn instead
our gifted one-and-only destiny
allowing thus to be immortally re-born
the intended core element of our original self
which many moons ago was the sole stronghold
of that which we, the people
of the so-called “modern” times
ever so dismissively
insensitively
ignorantly
dare to label as “humanity”?

© hülya n. yılmaz, 1.20.2018

[This poem is my third that appeared in the February, 2018 issue of The Year of the Poet, a monthly international anthology published by Inner Child Press. The Year of the Poet has its regularly contributing poets from various parts of the world and features between three and four new poetry writers every month. Now in its fifth year, this book showcases -outside its monthly changing featured poets, the poetic works of fourteen “permanent” writers. The book’s 2018 offerings have been conceived to highlight a different civilization each month. Accordingly, it serves also as a collective educational undertaking to offer insight into various aspects of civilizations of the past and present.]

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“the world’s timeline knows . . .”

they had to be noted
while their desert of sand
still chuckled in giggles
with their newborns’ tickles
but also drained out persistent tears
that were soaked by parents’ eternal fears

wars were aplenty back then

are you with me?
do you see what i see?
on second thought . . .
never mind!
forget about me!
just look
please take a good look
with your heart’s eyes however
holding on all along
to the hand of your conscience too
surely you will heed
the desperate call for a minute-long silence
in the face of the so-called
ancient times’ wholehearted embrace
of building legendary and timeless monuments
of constructing age-old destructions

oh, the broken spirits’ tears!
oh, those souls-burning tears!

wars are too plentiful today

© hülya n. yılmaz, 1.20.2018

[This poem appeared in the February, 2018 issue of The Year of the Poet, a monthly international anthology published by Inner Child Press. The Year of the Poet has its regularly contributing poets from various parts of the world and features between three and four new poetry writers every month. Now in its fifth year, this book showcases -outside its monthly changing featured poets, the poetic works of fourteen “permanent” writers. The book’s 2018 offerings have been conceived to highlight a different civilization each month. Accordingly, it serves also as a collective educational undertaking to offer insight into various aspects of civilizations of the past and present.]

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