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‘Khachpoorn:’ An Expression of Thanks and an Ask for Blessing

A Poem by Daniel Varoujan Translated by the Zoryan Institute

This poem is part of a collection titled, “The Song of the Bread.” It is an expression of thanks and an ask for blessing. It was published in 1921 in Istanbul, six years after Daniel Varoujan’s martyrdom in April 1915. He was part of the first group of intellectuals imprisoned and killed by Ottoman soldiers at the onset of the Armenian Genocide.

Daniel Varoujan’s memorial in Istanbul (Photo: Rupen Janbazian)

The soldiers had also confiscated his entire writings for censorship purposes. Fortunately, this collection “The Song of the Bread” was recovered by mere fate and synchronicity. An Armenian working for the censorship department at the time, using his financial resources, saved Varoujan’s last rays of intellect.

Amongst his notes were titles of poems that he had not yet completed as part of this collection, which were: “The Flour,” “The Yeast,” “The Wood Oven,” to name a few.

On the occasion of Thanksgiving, with boundless thanks, we share with you this poem that survived the genocide.

Wishing you and your family a Happy Thanksgiving.

The Zoryan Institute

***

Khachpoorn

I bring to you, Mother, the gift of my first harvest

To sacrifice on your Altar, where for centuries

The peach colored wax candles of my hives

have flown streams of Light and tears

***

You, the protector of our homeland

Which you gave the immortality of heaven.

You made the bud to flower, and hope to Dawn

that smiles on my hut

***

You, this full Cross, that I have woven with my own hands

accept it Mother. In the thousands of sheaves of wheat

these were dancing like virgin blonds

ripe and sun drenched

 

***

Under my armpit, still the dew on their heads

Fallen like rays harvested from the moon,

No bird had destroyed their full banks

With their beaks

 

***

I have woven them bundle by bundle

Giving the form of your son’s revered cross,

Whose blood, every Easter, are absorbed as

Sacred fire by the furrows

 

***

I have woven them with my hopes and wishes.

In them is the essence of the soil,

The fire of the sun and the glow of the coulter

Manly force of my arms and

Invocation of my grand children

***

Mother bless this cross in my hand. And give to my farms

Gold in the summers and pearls in the Spring.

As long as my silos are filled, the torches will shed light to your alter

 

***

 

Do in the same way—like the old days—

When you pay your visit field by field

No Thorns should come under your feet

But rather the peaceful poppies like our hearts.

2 Comments on ‘Khachpoorn:’ An Expression of Thanks and an Ask for Blessing

  1. avatar Azad Rayyes // March 21, 2017 at 6:10 pm // Reply

    How beautiful ….. thank you !

  2. avatar Azad Rayyes // March 21, 2017 at 6:12 pm // Reply

    How Beautiful !
    Thank you ….azad

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