Early evenings always are ungracious.
Once the day’s pomp disappears
And everywhere fills with our loneliness,
In a scream of colours from our garden,
From within our bag, a hand takes
Lavender scented sorrows;
Early evenings always are ungracious.

Regrets, in waves of assault,
Press toward the bronze gate of oblivion
And the soul is riddled with arrows;
Suddenly, you are in the old house where you were born;
The lamp, the stairs are waiting for you,
The cradle rustles with silent lullabies
And all the lost, the defeated, the sad…

With the beauty of untold love
A poem left unfinished on paper;
One morning that smells of rain,
We remember opening a window one day,
A motionless cloud, a flying bird,
The rock where we sat to have bread and cheese…
All these, with the beauty of love.

Love must have flown away one summer
Like a line of girls dancing arm in arm.
And you! O the skirts of times past,
Dragged away like fading moonlight
From distant gardens with ancient trees;
Leaving weary men to the night,
Skirts, whimsical, whispering, swaying.

In springs never to come again,
Flowers, witnesses of false promises,
Await the return of the eternal lover.
O deception, the most beautiful song of life!
Be deceived even if despairing winter has arrived;
On each strange, snowy footprint,
Flowers the lost lover scattered.

And you! O you! A gleaming glimpse
Through branches blowing in the wind;
What is it that you want from me this evening hour?
Woman, never seen to smile,
How eternal in love’s mirror you are;
As memories awaken at this hour,
You, always you, through branches blowing in the wind.

O oblivion! Close your window,
Into its depths, the sea has pulled me,
That world never again to rise from the waters.
Mist drifting from sorrow
From adventures that ended long ago.
O oblivion! Let your merciless night fall over me,
From this grief, rescue me.

Ahmet Muhip Dranas (1909-1980). Olvido. Translated from the Turkish.

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