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Kayıkçı Kul Mustafa

(17th century)

Ballad to Young Osman

When first we marched on Baghdat town,

Young Osman leapt across the moat,

The flag the fallen bearer dropped

He hoisted on the castle wall.

 

Saddle both my dappled greys,

That I may ride against the foe!

Before the morning prayers were said,

Young Osman swept through the city Gates.

 

Said Sultan Murad, send him to me,

This hero of whose deed I’ve heard,

Three-horsetail rank shall I confer

On Young Osman with the bloodstained sword.

 

Kul Mustafa was on patrol

When cannon balls rained on our side,

When cursed Baghdat claimed its toll

Young Osman led the brave who died.

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