Attento allo scalino

Excerpted from Dancing on Ropes: Translators & the Balance of History by Anna Aslanyan: Umberto Eco asks what would happen if ‘Bonne journée’ at the end of a conversation was translated as ‘I hope you will have good and enjoyable experiences for the rest of the day’, or if the exclamation ‘Attento allo scalino’ was turned intoContinue reading “Attento allo scalino”


Rights are susceptible to subversion, as even granite is susceptible to erosion.  …In a cycle as old as tribalism, ignorance of the Other engenders fear; fear engenders hatred; hatred engenders violence; violence engenders further violence until the only “rights,” the only law, are whatever is willed by the most powerful. Nasıl granit bile erozyona karşıContinue reading “Subversion”

Unfortunately, it was paradise

We Journey Towards a Home by Mahmoud Darwish We journey towards a home not of our flesh. Its chestnut trees are not of our bones. Its rocks are not like goats in the mountain hymn. The pebbles’ eyes are not lilies. We journey towards a home that does not halo our heads with a specialContinue reading “Unfortunately, it was paradise”

Prospective Immigrants (Göçmen Adaylar)

Prospective Immigrants Please Note – Göçmen Adaylar, Lütfen Dikkat by Adrienne Rich Either you willgo through this dooror you will not go through. Bu kapıdanya geçeceksinizya da geçmeyeceksiniz. If you go throughthere is always the riskof remembering your name. Geçerseniz,her zaman adınızı hatırlamanıztehlikesi olduğunu unutmayın. Things look at you doublyand you must look backand letContinue reading “Prospective Immigrants (Göçmen Adaylar)”

Özgürlük bir rokettir, değil mi

Fourth of July by John Brehm Freedom is a rocket, isn’t it, Özgürlük bir rokettir, değil mi, burstingorgasmically overparkloads of hotdog devouringhuman beingsor into the citiesof our enemieswithout whom wewould surelykill ourselves though they areourselves andAmerica I see nowis the soldierwho said I sawsomethingburning on mychest and triedto brush it off withmy right handbut myContinue reading “Özgürlük bir rokettir, değil mi”

George Orwell’s moral support

Zihnimde George Orwell, bana moral aşılıyordu: “Evrensel yalanlar çağında gerçeği söylemek, devrimci bir eylemdir.” I drew on George Orwell’s moral support: “In a time of universal deceit, telling the truth is a revolutionary act.” — Can Dündar, Tutuklandık / We Are Arrested

Ruining your concentration

“I remember the first day you came to the exhibition.  You were strolling through the gallery looking rather bored, when you suddenly stopped in front of my portrait.  You looked at it so strangely!  Everyone around you noticed.   “Sizi sergiye ilk geldiğiniz günden beri hatırlıyorum.  Canınız sıkılmış gibi dolaşırken birdenbire benim portremin önünde durdunuz…Continue reading “Ruining your concentration”

Bir perde gibi

For a long time, I went to bed early.  Sometimes, my candle scarcely out, my eyes would close so quickly that I did not have time to say to myself: “I’m falling asleep.”  And, half an hour later, the thought that it was time to try to sleep would wake me; I wanted to putContinue reading “Bir perde gibi”

“Genelde şöyle gülerdin,” dedi ve taklidimi yaptı. 

We spent the morning by the pools and slides, had lunch and went over to the amusement park section, where we stayed the rest of the day.  I drove a bumper car with your brother, while your sisters had one each, and I rode the roller coaster with them, and we sat together in oneContinue reading ““Genelde şöyle gülerdin,” dedi ve taklidimi yaptı. “