Mooring my barge in the little port of Black Water
I start walking the sloping cobblestone streets
and I find a charming place
where people with almond eyes
decent and sober men of olden days
gather by the statue of the poet
among the flowering trees.
They are free of the world's troubles
and there is no other sound in the air
once the lute has begun to play their beloved song
born of the magical Persian breath
to show me that I'm welcome and they care for me.
There’s a moist dream in the breeze of the spring
from the apple blossom fragrance
and a mysterious whisper in the soul
from the call of the muezzin.
A Night in May
Oh, ethereal is the heaven and jeweled the sky,
divine is the harmonious ode of the thrush nightingale
that has sung all night in the sweet smelling Persian lilac shrub.
Yet, like any transient songbird, this philomel may never come back…
On a Night Without Dew
My grandfather’s horse snorts and goes by the smell
in the peaceful late summer night without dew
filled with the sweetest fragrance of second-cut hay
freshly mowed by the light of the moon.
The wheels squeak and the chains jingle
as I face the shadow of three royal barrow tombs
where a chorus of chirping cicadas and crickets
tirelessly cling to brome and timothy stems,
hand sickles, scythes and pitchforks.
Oh, insouciant insects with prominent eyes,
into the strings of the wind harp
you indifferently mingle courting songs
with no thought of a missing magnificent kingdom.
It is a comfortable September day in autumnal colors.
The grapes are ripe, taste sweet, it's time to harvest.
The warm white waves are gleaming across the sea,
over the foamy crests a seagull cries.
But where is the chirp of the dark swallows
that were perching on the beam of the pavilion
facing the garden choked with weeds?
Will somebody tell me?
Sailing Around the Turquoise Island
Every island rock clearly reflected in the water
And Swallow’s Nest castle steeped in the gloomy history.
Vultures in the oblique sun hovering over mythical cave-towns,
No fog on the waterfalls, no waves in the Fountain of Tears.
Chatyr-Dag Mountain halving the horizon of ages,
Bakhchisaray’s minarets supporting the heaven.
The whispering waves of the sea have never known such marvel
Not even the Dniester or the old Danube reputed to be an eager wanderer.
[Editor's note: the above poems are translated from Romanian from the author's upcoming collection “Suwlî boya káátte” (“Watercolor on Paper”)]
Taner Murat is a Crimean Tatar writer and translator from Romania where he is best known for his Romanian-Crimean Tatar dictionaries.
Taner was born in 1959 in Constanţa , Romania . He received his BS in 1985 in mechanical engineering from Lucian Blaga University , Sibiu . After working as an engineer, he later worked in tourism, and from 2009 he served as a teacher.
Since childhood he showed interest in his mother tongue. He did his first linguistic study attending the Turkish language course of poet Emin Emel in the late 80s.
In 1990, when the editors of Renkler Journal in Bucharest led by historian Tahsin Gemil created the Tatar movement based on ideas of cultural and linguistic uniformity, the one who opposed this project was Septar Mehmet Yakub, the old Mufti of Romania, and Taner joined his cultural diversity conservation view activating under the motto: Tek niyet, mútenevviyet (“Unity in diversity"). For a short period, he served as the representative of the cultural interests of the ethnic groups in Constanta County .
In 2006 he debuted as a novelist with Kókten sesler (“Voices of Celestial Roots”) and in 2010 he launched his first poetry collection Ótken bír ș aklayga sewdam (“My Love for a Singing Seagull”).
Murat loves and is always happy to serve the community. From 2009 to 2012 he joined as a volunteer editor Gúner Akmolla’s Emel literary journal, and in December 2010 he founded in Constanta the English-Crimean Tatar bilingual journal Nazar Look where he serves as volunteer editor.
He believs in both modern and religious education. Since 2012 he shows interest and campaignes for the establishment of Shewkiy Bektore Tatar University at the Black Sea .