Sing That Song


50th day of fasting
Kemal Pir sits in his bed in a cell
The heat is suffocating
His shirt is off , his upper body naked
His cheek are sunken , his eyes are sunken , he is nothing but skin and bones.
His black and blue lips have cracked.
Hundreds of mosquitoes are buzzing around him to get the last drops of bloods he has left.
He swats his shirt to get rid of them.
When he runs out of strength he lays on his bed
“Doctor, what should I do with these mosquitoes?” he asks Hayri, for help
Hayri , who sits on the stone bench of the lower cell :
” Puff the smoke of your cigarette towards them .” he says.
Kemal does whatever Hayri says . When he sees mosquitoes flying away , he laughs.
“Doctor! Your invention worked . Mosquitoes are flying away” he says and puffs the smoke again. He dives into the smoke with his dreams.
“We have a few more days left in this world! Sing us a song Doctor.” says Kemal.
There’s no answer from Hayri. He lays on the stone bench, skin and bones. He can’t lift.
He knows his other friends who are fasting have beds. But he doesn’t have one. He’s been sleeping on this stone for fifty days. Once he thinks of asking the guards for one but then he lets the idea go. He thinks ” If I ask for one , they’ll take this as a weakness and they might take away the beds the others have”.
As Kemal said ” We’re going to die . Come on don’t break my heart !”. He forced himself and stood up. Hayri , who never breaks anyone’s heart , who can easily get along with everyone , who’s always humble, normally never sings. But Kemal Pir has asked him a favor as they were getting closer to death, how could he refuse?
Kemal: “Doctor , sing the ‘Don’t cry my lover.'”
For a while there was silence. Friends in all the other cells were all ears.

” Don’t cry my lover , don’t cry,
Don’t wear a blue scarf
A Blue scarf fades away easily
Don’t wound my heart.

Come to me when apples turn red
Come to me when pears are sweet
I fell sick , you haven’t come
Let me die for you may come.”

Kemal Pir who listens to Hayri gets lost in thoughts.
He remembered his childhood by the shores of the Black Sea. His wild days , his university times in Ankara , the time he met Hayri, his journey to Kurdistan as he drops out of school, his arrest , his escape from jail, his second arrest and second escape, his journey to Palestine and return back for a major rebellion, waking-up in a military hospital because while he was traveling in a truck the driver who saw the soldiers, sped up and he was flung out of vehicle. He started crying so hard but never let the others hear. As Hayri stopped singing everyone went silent.
After awhile as Kemal noticed everything around was becoming dark. He threw his cigarette on the floor and laid on his bed.
When he awakened he realized he couldn’t see anymore.
He tried to light another cigarette.
He could not find the matches or the cigarettes since he went blind.
He sighed.
He struck a match taken from a matchbox which he found gropingly.
He sighed again.
He was able to light his cigarette after the seventh strike.
He hid his blindness from his friends.
One day a man who appeared to be a doctor, wearing a white coat over a military costume, walked into his cell.
While they talke he notices Kemal can not see.
“Kemal, you don’t see?” he asks
Kemal refuses:
“Yes, I see!!!…”
Doctor holds up five fingers in front of Kemal’s face and asks:
“How many fingers am I holding?”
Kemal answers :

Date 12 September 1982
Here is Diyarbekir Military Hospital
Morgue section
Actually it is basement
They put bunk bed here.
Dead strike passenger who left to death was here in bunks.
Hayri Durmus was lied down.
He pulled one of his knee towards himself and died like that.
His eyes were closed but his mouth was open.
Flies were around him.
There was blood and water under bunks.
They put a white sheet over Kemal Pir.
Akif Yilmaz was still in the throes of death.
Fuat Cavgun was in vegetal life.
Ali Cicek was groaning.
Soldiers started counting the corpse (dead person).
There were cuffins coming out of the prisoner instead of people who vacate.
At the hospital no soldiers were speaking, there were no words said.
May be no one thought some day these coffins will declare this oppressed nation existence to the world.

– 44 –

Diyatbakir Prison was preparing for a new day at October, 5 1983.
Commanders and privates are confused; they didn’t know what to do.
They were beating prisoners with logs for saying nationalist anthems.
Everybody knew, there is a dead strike is going on at 35th and 36th wards.
Even there is a hunger strike is going on, there are nationalist anthems in the other wards, and there is a different anthem for each ward.
The neighborhood near prison can hear the sound of anthems.
Suddenly, the prisoners who a on dead strike start slogans;
“Damn to colonialism”
This slogan is vibrating like an ocean wave from ward to ward.
After 2 or 3 minutes, from all dungeons;
They were screaming; “Damn to colonialism”;
Every thing was flip flopped.
Kurdish anthems take to place of nationalist Turkish anthems.
There was dancing and Zilgit .
Poems and the prisoners who can read a poem were taking his head out of window and reads poets.
Singers are singing their songs which they just made up over there.
Commanders are running out of wards because of their fears.
Excitement, wave by wave is wrapping all prisoners’ body, wooden bunks are broken down and turns to strikes.
They build barricades at the entrances of wards.
It is the beginning of barricade war.
The number of prisoners on dead strike reaches to 600.

– 45 –

One captain and 100 commanders are on their way to press the biggest ward.
Commanders are holding a shield on one hand an ax log on the other.
Captain is the first one, and he is the one who open the door.
There is 180 people right front of hem, their hands are bloody.
Captain still didn’t decide what to do because of his fear; his eyes are focusing on a prisoner.
At that time he thinks, two armies are face to face.
And he knows for sure, at the end of there crash there will be no soldiers survived.
He reads this from eyes of prisoners, who are turned to crazy personals.
Anyway, a war is a war; a captain could not hesitate to fight.
First of all, captain tries psychological tactics.
With his pointing finger he shows the right side of ward;
“Someone who believe to state, go to that side!”
By showing left side of ward, he screams; “if somebody say, I will take my rights from state fuck by fuck, go to other side!”
The Man at the front of all prisoners was holding a long and thick log. He was looking with full of anger and grudge that gives him a power, he can destroyed captain and soldiers in to peaces.
After captain finished his speech, the Man is the first one who goes to the side of fuck by fuck. All prisoners are chasing him and collect from one side.
Captain couldn’t hide his fear and shock, he backed a step.
To the Man; “what is this all about, you told us you are not a political and separator?”
The Man screaming to the face of captain full of anger and grudge:
“Yes, I wasn’t but you did me one!
I was blind, you opened my eyes…!
You push me to this fight, which will be continued till judgment day!”


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Selim Çürükkaya

1954 te Bingöl' de doğdu. Öğretmen okulundan mezun oldu. Siyasi nedenlerle on bir yıl hapis yattı. Gazeteci ve yazar. Yayınlanmış 10 Kitabı var. Siyasi mülteci olarak Almanya'da yaşıyor.

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