Giant of Turkish poetry remembered on 100th birthday
ISTANBULMunicipalities, bookworms and more are marking the 100th anniversary of the birth of poet Fazıl Hüsnü Dağlarca, who was known for his unique style and voluminous contribution to Turkish poetry.
The poet, who passed away six years ago at the age of 94, is seen as an innovator and the leader of the epic poem genre in Turkish literature who believed that “poetry should emphasize the elements that turn a society into a nation; it should feature its triumphs, and pains.”
The poet’s centenary will be celebrated with a number of activities organized by Beşiktaş Municipality in Istanbul on Aug. 26.
Dağlarca was not only a creative genius who used original allegories and symbols, but also a conscious citizen concerned with the problems of mankind. The poet’s works are generally separated into three periods. In his early years, Dağlarca wrote on themes including the relationship between the human being and the cosmos, and the relation between nature and the supernatural. In the 1950s, the works of the great poet explored the relationship of the individual with society and nature. Later in the 1960s, Dağlarca became increasingly sensitive to the climate of social and political change inside and outside of Turkey. His critical perspective was reflected in his poems, as he often took a stance against exploitation and imperialism, sympathizing with the struggle of the marginalized masses.
The situation of children was yet another area of inspiration for the poet.
“My love for children is equal to my love for poetry,” Dağlarca said, and he placed a special emphasis on the value of educating the younger generations. His poetry sequence titled “Çocuklarda” (In Kids) is made up of more than 20 books that targeted younger readers. The poems focus on the inquisitive nature of children and their struggle to establish balance between objects and their minds. A selection of Dağlarca’s poems can be found in English with the translation of Talat Sait Halman.
The commemoration night called “Dağlarca Is Here! Dağlarca with Poems and Memories” will be held at 8 p.m. this evening in Beşiktaş Abbasağa Park. Doğan Hızlan, Ataol Behramoğlu, Sennur Sezer and many more from the world of literature will attend the event. Emin İgüs and Eylem Pelit will also perform folksongs composed from Dağlarca’s poems, and a part of journalist/poet Yasemin Arpa’s documentary called “Dağlarca Burada” will also be screened.