Monday, October 29, 2012

For Republic's Day, a Quote from Nazim Hikmet

One of the many great ironies about Turkey, my late father Mehmet Gokbudak's country and a nation I've visited 15 times, is that the great poet Nazim Hikmet (1902-1963), who was a communist who died in exile in the Soviet Union, is now the official national poet of Turkey!

Today, Hikmet is buried in Moscow (image above).

The Republic of Turkey was established by Mustafa Kemal Ataturk on this day in 1923, which was 89 years ago.

Here is a quote from Hikmet, who is honored here in America with the Nazim Hikmet Poetry Festival which is usually held in April:

"Living is no laughing matter. You must live with great seriousness like a squirrel for example_ I mean without looking for something beyond and above living, I mean living must be your whole occupation."

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