Her and Me by Sait Faik Abasiyanik

I am running towards you in a boat

to not to die, not to go insane…
to live life; to live far away from all the expectations
to live…
It is not warm the memory of her lips; no, it is not;
Not the scent of her hair
None of that.
In days like these, when the world is trembling with tempests
I cannot do without her.
Her hand has to be in mine,
I have to look at her eyes,
Have to hear her voice.
We have to eat together
And sometimes laugh.
I do not do, I cannot do without her.
You my ugly girl,
You my bread, my poison;
My flavor, my sleep.
I cannot do without you!

by Sait Faik Abasıyanık
(1953)

Sait Faik is a nationally well-known Turkish writer, who is primarily praised for his beautiful short stories. He has written only a few poems, among which the one above belongs to. Just like the other poems he wrote, it is so simple, yet it gets me, probably because of its simplicity. The emotions that come across the simple beauty of the Turkish language he uses.

My grandma proudly used to explain: ‘Sait Faik, he was our neighbor…he lived just in this next door house together with his parents. He was young back then. Young. Full of life…’.
He died of cirrhosis.
He wasn’t yet fifty.
Below is the original version in Turkish.

O ve Ben

Sana koşuyorum bir vapurun içinde
Ölmemek, delirmemek için…
Yaşamak; bütün adetlerden uzak
Yaşamak…
Hayır değil, değil sıcak;
Dudaklarının hatırası;
Saçlarının kokusu
Hiçbiri değil.
Dünyada büyük fırtınanın koptuğu böyle günlerde
Ben onsuz edemem.
Eli elimin içinde olmalı,
Gözlerine bakmalıyım,
Sesini işitmeliyim.
Beraber yemek yemeliyiz
Ara sıra gülmeliyiz.
Yapamam, onsuz edemem.
Bana su, bana ekmek, bana zehir;
Bana tat, bana uyku
Gibi gelen çirkin kızım.
Sensiz edemem!

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