Song of the Sea

The boat setting off at full sail towards the horizon!
You chose to sail at dusk; you have left.
As you go away from the shores where your life was spent,
And approach the world born in your imagination,
Behind the motion of the waves solitude grows.
Slowly the world becomes a different place.
Around you, gradually, a different light appears;
Above, the night; below, the sea; everywhere blueness…

And the path is a tale, long and beautiful;
With stars, tete-a-tete, the hours pass.
The sweet sleep soon comes to an end,
Nature’s dream ends, the sky lightens.
Moving forward on pure silver waters,
Far away, dawn, one by one opens the curtains…
With its music, the churning turns into a world by itself;
The reign of sky and sea is seen at last.

Inside this mirror as if in the other sphere,
Never distrustfully ask: “To where?”
As you recover from the merriment of drunkenness,
Do not fear the emptiness believing it to be a dreadful abyss!
Feel that in nature you too have some divinity;
The soul thus attains the bliss of its existence.

All alone, sails on, on your way today,
Do not look back; fearless, move on;
Move on! Right to the farthest free blueness!

As long as one imagines, one lives.

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

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