Tag Archives: #Occupy Gezi

Poem 56 in Solidarity: Rune of the Finland Woman

by Marilyn Hacker

For Sára Karig

“You are so wise,” the reindeer said, “you can bind the winds of the world in a single strand.”—H. C. Andersen, “The Snow Queen”

She could bind the world’s winds in a single strand.
She could find the world’s words in a singing wind.
She could lend a weird will to a mottled hand.
She could wind a willed word from a muddled mind.

She could wend the wild woods on a saddled hind.
She could sound a wellspring with a rowan wand.
She could bind the wolf’s wounds in a swaddling band.
She could bind a banned book in a silken skin.

She could spend a world war on invaded land.
She could pound the dry roots to a kind of bread.
She could feed a road gang on invented food.
She could find the spare parts of the severed dead.

She could find the stone limbs in a waste of sand.
She could stand the pit cold with a withered lung.
She could handle bad puns in the slang she learned.
She could dandle foundlings in their mother tongue.

She could plait a child’s hair with a fishbone comb.
She could tend a coal fire in the Arctic wind.
She could mend an engine with a sewing pin.
She could warm the dark feet of a dying man.

She could drink the stone soup from a doubtful well.
She could breathe the green stink of a trench latrine.
She could drink a queen’s share of important wine.
She could think a few things she would never tell.

She could learn the hand code of the deaf and blind.
She could earn the iron keys of the frozen queen.
She could wander uphill with a drunken friend.
She could bind the world’s winds in a single strand.

Marilyn Hacker

Marilyn Hacker

Marilyn Hacker is the author of twelve books of poems, including Names (Norton, 2010) and Essays on Departure (Carcanet, 2006) ,an essay collection, Unauthorized Voices (Michigan, 2010), and thirteen collections of translations from the French.  She lives in Paris.


Poem 35 In Solidarity: Round-Eyed In A Square between Taksim and Catalunya

Kymm Coveney

Round-Eyed In A Square between Taksim and Catalunya

for Ester Quintana; #resistturkey

Friends leap off bridges
while she stands aside.
‘Neither a follower nor a leader be’
her internal compromise.

Crowds make her nervous.
Who’s to say they’ll not turn?
Hoards veering
like a school of fish. Sharks
trained on some unforeseen target.

It is not the crowd, not her friends
sweeping the streets
in slap-dash formation
riot gear at the ready
steering her retreat
up a dead-end alley.

She holds the hand next to hers,
not yet defiant. Still
only adding her voice,
she looks up at the cornice
facing home.

There is no way out from this
Searing pain
seething confusion.
No uniform staunches the bleeding.
No ambulance is let through.

She did not see the future coming,
cannot see it go up in flames.
She leans on a friend, one
of the kind who leaps off bridges.

Ella/El sculpture by Maria Roldán Photo: Kymm Coveney

Ella/El sculpture by Maria Roldán
Photo: Kymm Coveney

Kymm Coveney was born in Boston in 1959 and moved to Spain in 1982. Now living in Barcelona, she raises polyglot daughters and fools with written languages at http://betterlies.blogspot.com.es/. She tweets under the handle @KymmInBarcelona, and for her interpretations of translated poetry, go to http://kymminbarcelona.tumblr.com/.

Poem 28 In Solidarity: To Gezi Park

Ryan Van Winkle

To Gezi Park

The weather was, and continues to be, beautiful. We covered

our mouths with scarves and set out to meet under a tree.

“Bella, Ciao” plays on a boom-box, I can hear

cheering and clapping. But even now

the spring breeze carries high

a whistling, screaming sound.

RVWRyan Van Winkle lives in Edinburgh.

Poem 25 In Solidarity: Gezi Parkında bir Kuş Yuvası (A Bird Nest in Gezi Park)

by Müesser Yeniay

Gezi Parkında bir Kuş Yuvası

Nazım Hikmet’e saygıyla

Bir kuş yuvasından yazıyorum bunları
iki dal arasında, Gezi parkında
göğsüme bıçak gibi saplanıyor nefesim
göğü yıkmaya geliyorlar bütün yeryüzü halkıyla

bir kuş yuvasıyım Gezi parkında
iki dal arasında

burada insanlar zehirli
ağaçlar sökülmüş

kovuluyoruz annemizin
bizi davet ettiği dünyadan

kuş seslerini bombalıyorlar
-çıkaramaz kuşlar çil çil para sesini-

bir Ethem duyuluyor ateşler içinde Anka!
kaynak işçisi Ankara’da..
yığılıyor bedeni kuş tüyü gibi.

ölmeden toprak ediyorlar bizi
duman altında sokak çocukları ve kediler
kambur sırtlarında kaybolan rüya
kör gözlerle dünyaya bakılmaz artık
ya uyumak hiç ummadığın bir anda!
hiç ummadığın anda uyumak..

ben bir kuş yuvasıyım Gezi parkında
bir çift dal arasında

A Bird Nest in Gezi Park

In memory of Nâzım Hikmet with respect

I am writing these words from a bird nest
between two branches, in Gezi Park
like a knife my breath is stuck in my chest
they are coming to destroy the sky with all the people of earth

I am a bird nest in Gezi park
between two branches

here the people are poisonous
the trees are displanted

we are getting dismissed from
where our mothers invited us

they are bombing the twitters of birds
-they cannot produce the sound of cash-

an Ethem is heard, a simurg in fire!
welding worker in Ankara
his body is collapsing like a feather

they are turning us into earth before we die
under smoke street children and cats…
on their hunchback a lost dream
eyes blinded cannot see the world…
or to sleep in an unexpected moment!
in an unexpected moment to sleep…

I am a bird nest in Gezi park
between a pair of branches

Müesser Yeniay

Müesser Yeniay

Müesser Yeniay
1984 Bayındır, İzmir doğumlu. Ege Üniversitesi, Edebiyat Fakültesi, İngiliz Dili ve Edebiyatı mezunu. II. Yunus Emre (2006), Homeros Attila İlhan (2007), Ali Rıza Ertan (2009) şiir ödülleri sahibi.

İlk kitabı Dibine Düşüyor Karanlık da 2009’da çıktı. Dünya şiirinden çevirileri kapsayan ikinci kitabı Evimi Dağlara Kurdum 2010’da; son kitabı Yeniden Çizdim Göğü ise 2011’de yayımlandı. İranlı şair Behruz Kia’nın şiirlerini Lalelere Requiem adıyla Türkçeye çevirdi. Diğer çevirileri: Gerard Augustin/Seçme Şiirler (Eray Canberk, Başak Aydınalp, Metin Cengiz ile birlikte, 2011), Michel Cassir/Kişisel Antoloji (Eray Canberk, Metin Cengiz ile birlikte, 2011).

Şiirleri İngilizce, Fransızca, İtalyanca, Sırpça, Arapça ve İbranice’ye çevrildi. Bosna-Hersek, İsrail, Sırbistan ve Amerika’da düzenlenen uluslararası şiir festivallerine katıldı.
Şiirden dergisi editörüdür. P.E.N ve Türkiye Yazarlar Sendikası üyesidir. Bilkent Üniversitesinde Türk Edebiyatı alanında yüksek lisans öğrenimine devam etmektedir.

MÜESSER YENİAY was born in İzmir, 1984; graduated from Ege University, with a degree in English Language and Literature. She has won several awards in Turkey including the Yunus Emre, Homeros Attila İlhan and the Ali Riza Ertan prize.

Her first book Dibine Düşüyor Karanlık da was published in 2009 and her second book Evimi Dağlara Kurdum is a collection of translation from world poetry. Her latest book Yeniden Çizdim Göğü was published in 2011. She has translated the poems of Persian poet Behruz Kia under the name of Lalelere Requiem.

Her poems have been translated into English, French, Serbian, Arabic, Hebrew and Italian. She participated in the poetry festivals in Bosnia-Herzegovina, Israel, Serbia and United States.

Müesser is the editor of the literature magazine Şiirden (of Poetry). She is currently pursuing an M.A. in Turkish literature at Bilkent University, Ankara, and is also a member of PEN and the Writers Syndicate of Turkey.

Poem 21 In Solidarity: Membrane

by Sophie Mayer


In the morning, there were no more tears. We had been rendered dry-eyed,
whatever they fired. Mask, milk, veil: our eyes open beneath and unblinking. Burn, yes: at gas and its associations, its membranous insistence. This us is a skin, a sheath for green or trigeminal; porous, vulnerable. Surrounding it. Shout as shield and: spray of air, hair-fine and falling as grass-seed. Sown (from slingshot or peashooter), striking ground and/as galaxy. The hard skin, the wings: we know this flight (street to street to street —

And sleep — two sleeps — millions — curled around — in rocky ground

Then the rain came (again) and seeds re. Called or membered: thin and limber, shooting softness into soil, eating deep earth.Wheat, barley, and chickpeas first brought to hand in our fertile: this bedtime tale of Anatolia. Tulips first grew here, and irises. See(d) our eyes. In each a tree, and we. Winged and skinned and, still, singing.

Ceyda Sungur- Shower of pepper spray turns woman in a red dress into Turkey’s image of resistance. Photograph: Osman Orsal/Reuters

Ceyda Sungur- Shower of pepper spray turns woman in a red dress into Turkey’s image of resistance. Photograph: Osman Orsal/Reuters

Sophie Mayer was inspired by this photo of Ceyda Sungur being sprayed with pepper spray.

Cover: Sarah Crewe & Sophie Mayer - " Signs of The Sistership". Knives, Forks and Spoons Press.

Cover: Sarah Crewe & Sophie Mayer – ” Signs of The Sistership”. Knives, Forks and Spoons Press.

Sophie Mayer is the co-editor of Solidarity Park, and three other poetic activist projects: Catechism: Poems for Pussy Riot, Binders Full of Women, and Fit to Work: Poets against Atos. Her most recent collection is signs of the sistership, co-authored with Sarah Crewe and published by Knives, Forks and Spoons.

Poem 20 In Solidarity: Durruti 1936


Durruti 1936

Hooligan-hero, anarchist leader,
son of a railway worker, a guerrilla
with the eyes of a child and the face of a savage
proletarian propagandist, Buenaventura Durruti
insisted most of all on clarity of expression.

When he had the floor everybody understood.
Emma Goldman said that she found him a veritable beehive
of activity. And he was allegedly always in good mood.

Durruti’s Column
was built on self-sacrifice and libertarian spirit.
His funeral magnificently draped all of Barcelona in black
and red. A glorious crowd of half a million
poured down Via Layetana just like that.

Even the Russian consul
was deeply moved
at the sight of that crowd with fists in the air
who swore in that anarchist
who believed that only generals rule by force
and that discipline always comes
like a spout of enlightenment
exclusively from within.

DAMIR ŠODAN (1964) poet, playwright, editor and translator was born in Split, Croatia. He has published four volumes of poetry, two volumes o plays and an anthology of Croatian contemporary “neorealist” poetry. He is an associate editor of Poezija and Quorum magazines in Zagreb and the member of Croatian writers’ society (HDP) and Croatian PEN. For many years he has lived in the Hague, the Netherlands, where he works as a translator for the United nations.

Poem 18 In Solidarity: Untitled

By Cynthia Marangwanda


If the trees had voices
They would plead with us
Not to sacrifice our youth
For their ageing bark and rooted bite.
In response we would sit
Under the reassuring shade
Of their yet-untouched leaves
And gently explain that the fire they stoked
Was now reborn as an incendiary storm
Too fiery for even their wood to fuel.
Their branches would curl down at us in disbelief
Until they noticed the red fury in our waiting postures
About to blow up like lidded frustrations
Incapable of containing their own pressure.
Only then would green dewy tears descend from the heights
As if to anoint those of us below
As if to let us know
For certain
We cannot live buried under concrete
Much longer.

Cynthia Marangwanda

Cynthia Marangwanda

Cynthia Marangwanda is a Zimbabwean poet and spoken-word artist who identifies herself as a feminist and a creative activist. Her art is rooted in Harare’s vibrant urban culture scene. Her poetry is mainly concerned with themes of identity, emancipation, the deconstruction of oppressive structures, globalisation,  individual power and transformation, all seen through the lens of a twenty-something modern-day African. She has recited her poetry all over Southern Africa and in Europe.