Letter to Hrant 

The following poem by Khatchig Mouradian appeared in the Armenian Weekly on Feb. 3, 2007, days after Agos Editor Hrant Dink’s assassination in Istanbul on Jan. 19, 2007. We would like to share it with our readers once again on the anniversary of Hrant’s death.

Hrant Dink was assassinated in Istanbul around 12:00 GMT on January 19, 2007, as he returned to the offices of Agos (Photo: Rupen Janbazian)
Hrant Dink was assassinated in Istanbul around 12:00 GMT on January 19, 2007, as he returned to the offices of Agos (Photo: Rupen Janbazian)

Dear Hrant,

I believe by now, the water found its crack; you found in the great beyond those whom we lost 92 years ago.

Hrant, I have some favors to ask.

Embrace Krikor Zohrab for me. Tell him I have been reading and rereading his short stories ever since I discovered them.

Give Daniel Varoujan my best. Tell him he enlightened my youth with his poems, and he continues to inspire my soul.

Hrant, do not forget to chant songs of survival with Siamanto.

Tell them they are on our bookshelves, they are on our classroom tables, their words are on our lips and in our hearts.

And tell them I believe-I’m sure you do too-that one day, they will be on the bookshelves, classroom tables, lips and hearts of Turks as well.

One day their statues-and yours-will also adorn Istanbul.

Do not forget to pray with Komitas, and tell him that one day, Armenian women will sing again in the villages of Anatolia.

Please find my grandparents. Tell them we carry their names and their love to the land they never left, the land we never saw.

Hrant, kiss the blessed foreheads of each and every victim of the Medz Yeghern of 1915.

Tell them we shall continue to walk on the road of their dreams. Because their dreams are our dreams.

Tell them we shall make the deserts flourish with the scent of their memory.

Tell them that from Talaat to Samast, we are survivors.

Tell them we are all Zohrab, Varoujan, Siamanto, Komitas and Hrant.

 

Love,
Khatchig Mouradian

 

Dr. Khatchig Mouradian

Dr. Khatchig Mouradian

Khatchig Mouradian is the Armenian and Georgian Area Specialist at the Library of Congress and a lecturer in Middle Eastern, South Asian, and African Studies at Columbia University. He also serves as Co-Principal Investigator of the project on Armenian Genocide Denial at the Global Institute for Advanced Studies, New York University. Mouradian is the author of The Resistance Network: The Armenian Genocide and Humanitarianism in Ottoman Syria, 1915-1918, published in 2021. The book has received the Syrian Studies Association “Honourable Mention 2021.” In 2020, Mouradian was awarded a Humanities War & Peace Initiative Grant from Columbia University. He is the co-editor of a forthcoming book on late-Ottoman history, and the editor of the peer-reviewed journal The Armenian Review.
Dr. Khatchig Mouradian

@khatcho

Historian. Author of The Resistance Network. Lecturer at Columbia University. Armenian & Georgian Area Specialist @ Library of Congress. Opinions my own.
#Yerevan is paralysed by defeat and failure in leadership, while #Baku is capitalising on geopolitical tailwinds,”… https://t.co/BtiAUBN8tm - 1 day ago

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