From Another Hill / City
two translations of From Another Hill by Yahya Kemal Beyatlı
From Another Hill
I looked from the top of a high hill at you – Istanbul.
I’ve never seen, never walked in, never known such a place.
Be at the throne of my heart as long as you live –
your smallest districts and wards, worth a lifetime of love.
In the world there are many more radiant cities,
but it’s you that creates in me this magic enchantment,
that brings me to say that the loveliest dreaming
is for those who live long in you, die in you, lie in you.
From Another City
At sunset I stood on a hill that looks on the city
thinking about a poem, about a song.
There were lines of red, like veins of blood in the sky,
gathering round the cathedrals and the tower.
I was not born here but this is where I choose to live
and I might not say other places are better or worse,
but when the sun dropped, that poem was still in my head
and all was darkness and colour, both festival and funeral.