PAMUK

Little villages
at the foot of mountains
from Kusadasi
to Istanbul
School lessons’ memories
Gasbids Sov
Sevanah Lych

The layers of mountains
that burden the horizon
Sailing across
these Turkish seas

A sight to awaken
longings of Armenia
the promised land
behind these
mountains steep

Those other faces
not just quite like these

Marash
Leninakan
Sardarabad

I thought of my father
who always felt
so Marashzí
and never once
set foot
in his forefathers’ land

that mountains guarded
hid from me
as I sailed the other way
in a Bahamian ship
that once was greek

The Promised Land
of poverty and open hands

The Promised Land
that mountains hide from me
that my grandmother
never got to see

She was born in Syria,
or Lebanon,
I am not certain

Marash Sevan Gasbitz Sov
Garni Kegart Leninakan
The Promised Land
my dad might never see

We´re not religious
but we´d kiss the land
behind those mountains
that slowly receed

of lost Empires
and christianity

Our Christian Rome
that never quite
got back its splendour
Our beautiful
our own
pillaged and devastated
Hayasdán
Risen from Ashes
and to ashes bound
into new freedom
and isolation

The Promised Land
The food the Wine
The Music and the
brotherhood
all the Pamuks
and Pambukians
and our last name
deformed by customs officers
Pamoukaghlian

I hope my dad
will someday see

and tell them
if he manage
in broken Turkish
English or chinese
the tongue is unimportant

“my father once
was Pambukián
like you
and his family
worked
the cotton fields”

Cotton fields around MARASH, the land of my ancestors. (My last name comes from the Armenian root PAMBAG, which means cotton. (Photo from http://www.eliecilicie.net/)
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