Turkish Cypriot Artists and Writers Union speaks up in the name of the World
can poets do, what can world poetry do en face war events that are alight right
now in our vicinity?
World stands up and says Enough is Enough, we cannot carry out conflicts on the
back of innocents, on the back of children. It is not a religious war, it is a
war for territory as it has always been in the area at the end of the
Mediterranean, and the solution finding is in the hands of ruthless fanatics
who sit back in their chairs and dictate the fighters to go out and kill, to
walk over corpses until the end. It is a war of shame.
should be the weapons but these people in the war scenes are speechless, they
are cowards, they are without any tolerance and respect for the others. They
have no heart and no tongue to speak up.
Friday, July 25, the Turkish Cypriot Artists and Writers Union have organised
for their members and guests to meet and express their empathy and share their
sadness by reciting their poems. Poems are to become flying messages to reach
far and perhaps the one or other will help to quench a fire. The venue for the
meeting was at the newly renovated Arabahmet Cultural Centre, an old Armenian building
with its character completely left untouched. We sat on the balcony on the
first floor and the evening came to bring darkness and a cool breeze. The bells
of the Armenian church around the corner stroke nine thirty when Ümit Incatçı
welcomed the guests. Thirty five artists and poets had come, among them the grey
eminence of the theatre, Yaşar Ersoy, the legendary figure of Mustafa Gökçeoğlu;
one poet I have not seen for a long time
was Feriha Altiok, and all my other friends and people I have interviewed for
my new book, Volume II of Art and Creativity in North Cyprus.
Gökçeoğlu opened the evening…Feriha Altiok was next and she had chosen a long
poem, perhaps for the reason that she hadn’t been in public for so long. They
all spoke up.
was a lovely Nicosian summer night, a breeze cooled the heated discussions that
followed the recitals: war on the back of children and the chances for peace.
Arabahmet is an Armenian quarter, once they lived here all together. No traffic
sounds here…a dog barking….the Imam called at sharp nine… and the bells of the
church followed, every 15 minutes…with the Christian bells one is always aware where
we stand in time or…. what the writing on the wall is?