by Karin Karakaşlı
Here and There
I’m taking the night ferry
a fat firefly
the coast a diamond necklace spread before me
sparkling here and there
In my dream
dressed in knives from head to toe
as I spun round
I cut whoever came near me
Each side was blood on steel
steel on blood
spurting here and there
I tried out all the words and then fell silent
I needed a new curse
words never spoken in vain
as old as the Stone Age
raging from here and there
This poem was translated by the Poetry Translation Centre translation workshop with a literal translation by Canan Marasligil. You can read the original, the literal translation and more poems from this workshop on the Poetry Translation Centre’s website.
Karin Karakaşlı was born in Istanbul in 1972. She graduated in Translation and Interpreting Studies. From 1996 to 2006 she worked at the Turkish-Armenian weekly newspaper Agos as editor, head of the editorial department and columnist on both Turkish and Armenian pages. She has completed an M.A. in Comparative Literature, works as a translation instructor at the university and as a teacher of Armenian language and literature in an Armenian High School. She is currently a columnist at Agos and Radikal newspapers, and continues to write fiction and poetry.
Her books include a children’s novel called Ay Denizle Buluşunca (When the Moon Meets the Sea), short story collections Başka Dillerin Şarkısı (Song of Other Languages), and Can Kırıkları (Splinters of the Heart), works of poetry,Her Kimsen SANA (Whoever you are this is FOR YOU), a novel is Müsait Bir Yerde İnebilir Miyim? (Can I Get Out Somewhere You Don’t Mind?).
She is the co-writer of the research book Türkiye’de Ermeniler: Cemaat, Birey, Yurttaş (Armenians in Turkey: Community, Individual, Citizen).
Canan Marasligil is a freelance writer, literary translator, editor and screenwriter based in Amsterdam. Her focus is on contemporary Turkish literature and comics from countries like Turkey, Algeria and the UK. Canan was a translator in residence at the Free Word Centre in London in 2013 where she developed activities around translation, literature and freedom of expression. She is also co-curator of Istanbulles, the International Comics Festival of Istanbul, Web editor for the European Cultural Foundation’s Narratives for Europe project and author at Publie.Net (France). Detailed projects can be found on her website.