Submit Your Poems
Get Your Premium Membership


See and share Beautiful Nature Photos and amazing photos of interesting places




Best Famous Nazim Hikmet Poems

Here is a collection of the all-time best famous Nazim Hikmet poems. This is a select list of the best famous Nazim Hikmet poetry. Reading, writing, and enjoying famous Nazim Hikmet poetry (as well as classical and contemporary poems) is a great past time. These top poems are the best examples of nazim hikmet poems.

Search for the best famous Nazim Hikmet poems, articles about Nazim Hikmet poems, poetry blogs, or anything else Nazim Hikmet poem related using the PoetrySoup search engine at the top of the page.

See also: Best Member Poems

Go Back

by Nazim Hikmet |

Our Eyes

 Our eyes
 are limpid
 drops of water.
In each drop exists a tiny sign of our genius which has given life to cold iron.
Our eyes are limpid drops of water merged absolutely in the Ocean that you could hardly recognize the drop in a block of ice in a boiling pan.
The masterpiece of these eyes the fulfillment of their genius the living iron.
In these eyes filled with limpid pure tears had failed to emerge from the infinite Ocean if the strength had dispersed, we could never have mated the dynamo with the turbine, never have moved those steel mountains in water easily as if made of hollow wood.
The masterpiece of these eyes the fulfillment of their genius of our unified labour the living iron.


by Nazim Hikmet |

On Living

 I

Living is no laughing matter:
 you must live with great seriousness
 like a squirrel, for example--
 I mean without looking for something beyond and above living,
 I mean living must be your whole occupation.
Living is no laughing matter: you must take it seriously, so much so and to such a degree that, for example, your hands tied behind your back, your back to the wall, or else in a laboratory in your white coat and safety glasses, you can die for people-- even for people whose faces you've never seen, even though you know living is the most real, the most beautiful thing.
I mean, you must take living so seriously that even at seventy, for example, you'll plant olive trees-- and not for your children, either, but because although you fear death you don't believe it, because living, I mean, weighs heavier.
II Let's say you're seriously ill, need surgery-- which is to say we might not get from the white table.
Even though it's impossible not to feel sad about going a little too soon, we'll still laugh at the jokes being told, we'll look out the window to see it's raining, or still wait anxiously for the latest newscast .
.
.
Let's say we're at the front-- for something worth fighting for, say.
There, in the first offensive, on that very day, we might fall on our face, dead.
We'll know this with a curious anger, but we'll still worry ourselves to death about the outcome of the war, which could last years.
Let's say we're in prison and close to fifty, and we have eighteen more years, say, before the iron doors will open.
We'll still live with the outside, with its people and animals, struggle and wind-- I mean with the outside beyond the walls.
I mean, however and wherever we are, we must live as if we will never die.
III This earth will grow cold, a star among stars and one of the smallest, a gilded mote on blue velvet-- I mean this, our great earth.
This earth will grow cold one day, not like a block of ice or a dead cloud even but like an empty walnut it will roll along in pitch-black space .
.
.
You must grieve for this right now --you have to feel this sorrow now-- for the world must be loved this much if you're going to say "I lived" .
.
.


by Nazim Hikmet |

A Sad State Of Freedom

 You waste the attention of your eyes, 
the glittering labour of your hands, 
and knead the dough enough for dozens of loaves 
of which you'll taste not a morsel; 
you are free to slave for others-- 
you are free to make the rich richer.
The moment you're born they plant around you mills that grind lies lies to last you a lifetime.
You keep thinking in your great freedom a finger on your temple free to have a free conscience.
Your head bent as if half-cut from the nape, your arms long, hanging, your saunter about in your great freedom: you're free with the freedom of being unemployed.
You love your country as the nearest, most precious thing to you.
But one day, for example, they may endorse it over to America, and you, too, with your great freedom-- you have the freedom to become an air-base.
You may proclaim that one must live not as a tool, a number or a link but as a human being-- then at once they handcuff your wrists.
You are free to be arrested, imprisoned and even hanged.
There's neither an iron, wooden nor a tulle curtain in your life; there's no need to choose freedom: you are free.
But this kind of freedom is a sad affair under the stars.


by Nazim Hikmet |

Last Will And Testament

 Comrades, if I don't live to see the day
-- I mean,if I die before freedom comes --
take me away
and bury me in a village cemetery in Anatolia.
The worker Osman whom Hassan Bey ordered shot can lie on one side of me, and on the other side the martyr Aysha, who gave birth in the rye and died inside of forty days.
Tractors and songs can pass below the cemetery -- in the dawn light, new people, the smell of burnt gasoline, fields held in common, water in canals, no drought or fear of the police.
Of course, we won't hear those songs: the dead lie stretched out underground and rot like black branches, deaf, dumb, and blind under the earth.
But, I sang those songs before they were written, I smelled the burnt gasoline before the blueprints for the tractors were drawn.
As for my neighbors, the worker Osman and the martyr Aysha, they felt the great longing while alive, maybe without even knowing it.
Comrades, if I die before that day, I mean -- and it's looking more and more likely -- bury me in a village cemetery in Anatolia, and if there's one handy, a plane tree could stand at my head, I wouldn't need a stone or anything.
Moscow, Barviha Hospital


by Nazim Hikmet |

Regarding Art

 Sometimes, I, too, tell the ah's
of my heart one by one
like the blood-red beads
of a ruby rosary strung
 on strands of golden hair!

But my
poetry's muse
takes to the air
on wings made of steel
like the I-beams
 of my suspension bridges!

I don't pretend
 the nightingale's lament
to the rose isn't easy on the ears.
.
.
But the language that really speaks to me are Beethoven sonatas played on copper, iron, wood, bone, and catgut.
.
.
You can "have" galloping off in a cloud of dust! Me, I wouldn't trade for the purest-bred Arabian steed the sixth mph of my iron horse running on iron tracks! Sometimes my eye is caught like a big dumb fly by the masterly spider webs in the corners of my room.
But I really look up to the seventy-seven-story, reinforced-concrete mountains my blue-shirted builders create! Were I to meet the male beauty "young Adonis, god of Byblos," on a bridge, I'd probably never notice; but I can't help staring into my philosopher's glassy eyes or my fireman's square face red as a sweating sun! Though I can smoke third-class cigarettes filled on my electric workbenches, I can't roll tobacco - even the finest- in paper by hand and smoke it! I didn't -- "wouldn't" -- trade my wife dressed in her leather cap and jacket for Eve's nakedness! Maybe I don't have a "poetic soul"? What can I do when I love my own children more than mother Nature's!


by Nazim Hikmet |

Angina Pectoris

 If half my heart is here, doctor,
 the other half is in China
with the army flowing
 toward the Yellow River.
And, every morning, doctor, every morning at sunrise my heart is shot in Greece.
And every night,c doctor, when the prisoners are asleep and the infirmary is deserted, my heart stops at a run-down old house in Istanbul.
And then after ten years all i have to offer my poor people is this apple in my hand, doctor, one read apple: my heart.
And that, doctor, that is the reason for this angina pectoris-- not nicotine, prison, or arteriosclerosis.
I look at the night through the bars, and despite the weight on my chest my heart still beats with the most distant stars.


by Nazim Hikmet |

Some Advice To Those Who Will Serve Time In Prison

 If instead of being hanged by the neck
 you're thrown inside
 for not giving up hope
in the world, your country, your people,
 if you do ten or fifteen years
 apart from the time you have left,
you won't say,
 "Better I had swung from the end of a rope
 like a flag" --
You'll put your foot down and live.
It may not be a pleasure exactly, but it's your solemn duty to live one more day to spite the enemy.
Part of you may live alone inside, like a tone at the bottom of a well.
But the other part must be so caught up in the flurry of the world that you shiver there inside when outside, at forty days' distance, a leaf moves.
To wait for letters inside, to sing sad songs, or to lie awake all night staring at the ceiling is sweet but dangerous.
Look at your face from shave to shave, forget your age, watch out for lice and for spring nights, and always remember to eat every last piece of bread-- also, don't forget to laugh heartily.
And who knows, the woman you love may stop loving you.
Don't say it's no big thing: it's like the snapping of a green branch to the man inside.
To think of roses and gardens inside is bad, to think of seas and mountains is good.
Read and write without rest, and I also advise weaving and making mirrors.
I mean, it's not that you can't pass ten or fifteen years inside and more -- you can, as long as the jewel on the left side of your chest doesn't lose it's luster! May 1949


by Nazim Hikmet |

About My Poetry

 I have no silver-saddled horse to ride,
no inheritance to live on,
neither riches no real-estate --
a pot of honey is all I own.
A pot of honey red as fire! My honey is my everything.
I guard my riches and my real-estate -- my honey pot, I mean -- from pests of every species, Brother, just wait.
.
.
As long as I've got honey in my pot, bees will come to it from Timbuktu.
.
.


by Nazim Hikmet |

Optimistic Man

 as a child he never plucked the wings off flies
he didn't tie tin cans to cats' tails
or lock beetles in matchboxes
or stomp anthills
he grew up
and all those things were done to him
I was at his bedside when he died
he said read me a poem
about the sun and the sea
about nuclear reactors and satellites
about the greatness of humanity


by Nazim Hikmet |

Autobiography

 Oh, both my shoes are shiny new,
And pristine is my hat;
My dress is 1922.
.
.
.
My life is all like that.