Retreat

She was drinking Chinese tea from a Chinese bowl.
I saw the beautiful eyes of a bird of prey. I looked
At her blood red, pure jewel like nails.

Every ornament, every colour, sparkling stone, harmonizing lace …
And the allure of the silk she wore,
First fragrance, then full essence.

If again I could fly to love, O beloved Istanbul!
With, in you, many nights of endless pleasure…
And close thereby this beautiful page of life.

An adventure was about to start. But, I thought to myself:
“ My heart is not strong enough, and this feeling too long would last…
I should depart before the adventure can start.”

Yahya Kemal (1884-1958). Ricat. Translated from the Turkish.

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