From this side
August 29, 2019
During his first visit to Western Armenia in Oct. 2013, Canadian-Armenian poet Rupen Khajag wrote the poem «Այս կողմից» ("Ays koghmits," "From This Side") at the base of Mount Ararat. H-Pem presents our translation of the poem accompanied by photographs taken by the author. You can find the original Armenian version of the poem following the translation.
From This Side
You are different from this side,
Strange and unfamiliar.
You are ugly from this side,
Vile and irregular.
You are sad from this side,
Abandoned and mortal.
You are mine—even if from this side—
Valiant, resolute, eternal…
(Daroink, Western Armenia, 2013)
Enjoyed this? Also check out our write-up on the Armenian Navy Band's "Here's to You, Ararat" in our multimedia guide!
Տարբեր ես դու այս կողմից,
Անհարազատ ու օտար.
Տգեղ ես դու այս կողմից,
Կոպիտ ու այլանդակ.
Տխուր ես դու այս կողմից,
Լքուած ու անտէր.
Իմն ես դու, թէկուզ այս կողմից,
Հզօ՛ր, անյա՛ղթ, անմե՛ռ…
Դարոյնք, Արեւմտահայաստան, 2013
Related In Pictures
Unlike the snow-covered, gloomy provincial town where the murders of Orhan Pamuk’s imagination took place, the Kars that welcomed my friend and me on our short trip to Western Armenia was warm, lively, and hospitable; enough to set my soul at ease, after a tumultuous arrival in the country.
Every night, a beautiful Armenian maiden named Tamar would wave a light from Akhtamar Island’s shore in the direction of her lover, who would then swim to her from the mainland to reunite in silence. But Tamar was a princess and the boy, a commoner. When her father found out about their secret meetings, his anger got the best of him. As Tamar was lighting her lover’s way, her father approached her and blew out the light. Without a glow to guide him across Lake Van, the boy drowned in the darkness of the night, wailing, “Akh, Tamar!” (“Oh, Tamar!”).
Many lists float around the Interweb for everything from the "Top 10 Reasons to Recycle" to the "11 Best Pizza Toppings, Ranked." Though environmental conservation and delicious pizza are no doubt important, there also exist a range of topics that have not yet been explored, uncovered, or synthesized on the web. To date, no such user-friendly resource exists for visiting the western half of our historic homeland, which we commonly refer to as Western Armenia, but is located today within the confines of the Republic of Turkey. A land that, for over two millennia, teemed with Armenian culture has been all but relegated to our dreams, with few Armenians ever having visited the towns and villages of their ancestors in the past century. We hope to change that with this guide...and with your help!
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