Letter to Yerevan (Part VIII)

Letter to Yerevan (Part VIII)

The Armenian Weekly is periodically publishing the English translation of Andranik Tzarukian’s epic 1945 poem Tught ar Yerevan (Letter to Yerevan)

Do you recall, Abov? There was a rout elsewhere
And petrified panic of disintegration;
A riotous retreat, like a spooked and soused herd,
Of all the Russian conscripts;
Lenin had heralded his call—Homeward!
Greetings to the suffering land and men!
Greetings to the foe! Hail to the vanquished!
Greetings to all and a rush towards home…

Do you recall, Abov?
The same bloody-snouted monster
Was returning with sharpened fangs,
With a sweeping ultimate onslaught
To deliver the last blow to the last remnants…

Has there ever been throughout the ages
A darker, hopeless cataclysmic time,
When the bleeding moribund heart
Of the Armenian realm,
Hanging at the rim of eternity’s chasm,
Ceased to beat for an instant?

Do you recall, Abov? The sky was frozen,
There was no benevolent god to be found,
And our fallen land, a mere living corpse,
Faced the hyena’s wide open mouth…
While in the useless register of fate
A merciless hand
Had already marked a full stop…

The sky was frozen and there was no God…
But lo and behold! Myth or miracle?
A man took a stand!
A fugitive from miracle, a miraculous man.
He stood up in our Ararat Plain,
Amidst corpses and crows,
And using faith as a shield of steel,
And love of country as a clarion to combat,
Forged an army
Of terrified men in despair,
And like a red-hot hammer,
Smote the vile forehead of the foe…

Do you recall, Abov, how they lived,
The last descendants of the Armenian realm,
When there was no God, and heaven was wicked?
Do you recall anew,
Haik—who challenged the fearsome Bel—
And his grandson?
Was he Haik’s grandson? An issue of Vardan?
Was he the young David?
A specter born of Armenia’s mountains?
Do you recall his radiant forehead?
The everlasting name—
Manoukian Aram?

 

***

On the occasion of the 99th anniversary of the establishment of the First Republic of Armenia (1918-1920), the Armenian Weekly announced that it will be periodically publishing the English translation of Andranik Tzarukian’s epic 1945 poem “Tught ar Yerevan” (“Letter to Yerevan”).

The translation, which will be published in parts and culminate on the Centennial of the First Republic of Armenia, is a collaborative effort between the editor of the Armenian Weekly Rupen Janbazian and former editor of the Armenian Review and former director of the ARF and First Republic of Armenia Archives Tatul Sonentz-Papazian.

Read parts III, III IV,  V, VI, and VII in the Armenian Weekly.

 

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Rupen Janbazian

Rupen Janbazian is the editor of the Armenian Weekly. His writings primarily focus on politics, human rights, community, literature, and Armenian culture. He has reported from Armenia, Artsakh (Nagorno-Karabagh), Turkey, Canada, the United States, and Western Armenia. He has served on the local and national executives of the Armenian Youth Federation (AYF) of Canada and Hamazkayin Toronto, and served as the administrator of the Armenian National Committee (ANC) of Toronto. Janbazian also taught Armenian History and Creative Writing at the ARS Armenian Private School of Toronto, and has worked on several translations.

2 Comments

  1. The Poet, Andranik Tzarukian versed in 1945, the year I was born …
    “Do you remember when there was no God …???”
    I did not say this …it is written in this poem
    Was the Poet Amdranik Atheist …???
    Sylva~MD~Poetry

  2. The same bloody-snouted monster is anew chasing another victim with the same accompanying world silence if not shocking indifference !!

    Thank you Dear Rupen for your great efforts in highlighting anew the sufferings of our nation which hopefully will contribute in enhancing further the determination of the Armenian nation to reward our heroes through regaining the rest of our motherland while strengthening the Republic of Armenian through consolidating good governance and good citizenship !

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