Ask me dear reader, let me tell you
The true nature of my poetry.
A lot of words, their talent their sincerity.
No craftsmanship, no art.
Poetry is “tears” they say, I don’t know, but
All my work I think is tears of my helplessness.
I weep, I can’t make you weep, I feel, I can’t express it;
My tongue has no heart, so distressing.
Read if a sensitive heart is what you need,
Read, since that is what I wrote about, if anything.
Mehmet Akif (1873-1936). Bana Sor Sevgili Okur. Translated from the Turkish.