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A Sad State Of Freedom - Poem by Nazim Hikmet

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.


Translated by Taner Baybars


Comments about A Sad State Of Freedom by Nazim Hikmet

  • Gold Star - 252,657 Points Edward Kofi Louis (2/12/2015 4:07:00 AM)

    Nice piece of work. Thanks for sharing this poem with us.

    E.K.L. (Report) Reply

    3 person liked.
    1 person did not like.
Read all 1 comments »

Poems About Sad

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  2. 2. A Fairly Sad Tale , Dorothy Parker
  3. 3. ‘and Ask Ye Why These Sad Tears Stream?’ , Alfred Lord Tennyson
  4. 4. The Sad Mother , Gabriela Mistral
  5. 5. Be Not Sad , James Joyce
  6. 6. Sad In Blue (A Lyric) , Peter S. Quinn
  7. 7. Sad , Cristina Geanta
  8. 8. To A Sad Daughter , Michael Ondaatje
  9. 9. A Sad State Of Freedom , Nazim Hikmet
  10. 10. For A Sad Lady , Dorothy Parker
  11. 11. Baseball's Sad Lexicon , Franklin Pierce Adams
  12. 12. My Sad Captains , Thom Gunn
  13. 13. In My Own Shire, If I Was Sad , Alfred Edward Housman
  14. 14. Sit Down, Sad Soul , Barry Cornwall
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  18. 18. Close Those Sad Sad Eyes , Beautiful Grim
  19. 19. To The Sad Moon , Sir Philip Sidney
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  27. 27. The Lacking Sense Scene.--A Sad-Coloured.. , Thomas Hardy
  28. 28. Sonnet Xxxi: With How Sad Steps, O Moon , Sir Philip Sidney
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  30. 30. Sad Sad Day , Laura Green
  31. 31. ! To A God-Daughter On Her Sad Poem , Michael Shepherd
  32. 32. Sad Song , Rahel Bluwstein
  33. 33. Happy & Sad , Sumita Datta
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  35. 35. Sonnet Iii: With How Sad Steps , Sir Philip Sidney
  36. 36. To A Sad Girl , Uriah Hamilton
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  46. 46. A Sad Sad Story , Joyce Hemsley
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