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Ziya Paşa



In the land of the infidel, I have seen cities and mansions,

In the dominions of Islam, ruin and devastation.


I have seen countless fools condescend to Plato

Within the Sublime Porte, that home of divagation.


A traveller on this earth to which we’re all condemned,

I have seen governments and their houses of assassination.


In no place have I found the solace of the tavern,

Though I’ve been to many a banquet, and many a libation.


Ziya, in the tavern of tne world, the hangover weighs heavy,

I’ve not seen much, in my brief time, worthy of admiration.

(Translated by Nermin Menemencioğlu, 101Poems by 101Poets An Anthology of Turkish Poetry)