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SERKAN ENGIN

SONGSOPTOK THE WRITERS BLOG | 11/10/2014 |



















(4)
Rain was spilling out on the pavements. Copper clouds were dancing slowly...
Ümit woke up with his mother's caress on his head. From his dear mother's eyes, the most timid brooke of compassion was flowing on this face. Miss Nebiye had already made her prayers and prepared the breakfast.
''Come on my son, tea is ready.''
''Hamm, ok mom.''
Mister İbrahim, had already got his place at the table. The stressed eyebrows hiding the soft  corners of his heart had their  shift on the north of his face. Even his wife for 40 years Miss Nebiye couldn't see that he laughed bass-baritone. Maybe he smiled a little...When their son was born.

According to Mister İbrahim, a father figure had to be hard. Because he was the king in this small monarchy which he called ''my family''. His frowning eyebrows and his voice in a high decibel were the shields of this ruling power. After washing and shaving his face, Ümit walked towards the desk with sleepy steps.
''Good morning father.''
''Good morning'' murmured the father, not caring to look at Ümit by lifting his eyes from the egg that he was peeling.

Miss Nuriye put the teapot on the table. The teapot was sleepyly murmuring it's vapour. The silent air in the room which expanded with the vapour was forcing the windows. Ümit wanted to hit his heart to the street...

Like every other morning, he kissed his mother's hands that looked like crippled paper and he went flying down the steps, leaving behind the murmuring prayers. He confronted the rain outside the door. He looked to the sky, pulling his head up.

Sky put little rain kisses on his face. His heart was like a butterfly which came out from its cone. Now was the time to fly with the infinite motion of life...He threw a bashful gaze on the window of the house on the other side from under his eyebrows when he was opening the door of his car. The sunscreens were not yet opened to the day. The rooms had not started yet to unburden themselves to the city.

Was Zafer awake? What kind of an expression would be on his face while he was sleeping? His gaze passed by the exterior windows but his heartbeat was in the house for a few seconds.

He hit the road to the Station. He put a cassette on the car stereo. The city was trying to reach life's speed. The shutters were opening with rusty noises; the shop windows were putting on their bright masks with anxiety. The garbage man was sweeping off the tired memories of the night. The sparrows which were afraid of the copper shield of the sky were hiding the fears under the roofs that were not fitting into their little hearts, postponing flight.

People were trying to catch buses and ferry boats, dragging their frowning-faces with themselves. Everybody was anxious to open a space, in accordance to their volume. Their anxious footsteps were blending with each other. Nobody was able to catch-up with him. Ümit was someone who ended the mission that he started.

He had solved every case that he had taken so far, yet he couldn't have the smallest clue about Broken Ziya's murderer. He had wandered around every place that Ziya frequently visited, made a search for every possible friend and enemy. They couldn't gather any information no matter who they questioned. All of a sudden, Ziya had dissapeared. His family never got worried. They were used to Ziya's not coming home for days. When he made good money, he ran to the whorehouses and then he ended up in the gambling places in the vicinity. When he came back, he would compensatre for the pain of losing, by hitting his wife and children. Every day the hatred of his family towards Ziya got bigger, but they were obedient to him because of their helplessness. Ziya was a life preserver made of fire in the middle of an ocean of hopelessness. Ziya's wife Selma would compensate for the pain by her skin and insistently filter hope from despair.

Ziya would carelessly roll cigars and get high in front of his children. At times he would he would even use his nine year old boy as a courier, saying 'He's just a kid, he wouldn't draw suspicion.'' At such times Selma found herself one step from murder. She would have cut Ziya into pieces with a bread knife if only her courage didn't fall short. Because of all that Selma never got sad, when she went to the juridical medicine for identification of the body. When she saw the coldness of death on Ziya's flesh, all of a sudden the firework show started in her eyes. She hardly suppressed the steps of the gazelle that went down near the lake to drink water. She got scared that the people around would hear the happiness knocking on the door of her heart. She never turned back to look while she was leaving the morgue. Now Ziya was a nightmare marathon that had been completed...

As soon as the Police Station had come to sight, Ümit's heart wings had been torn off. He was feeling embarrassed to face Cemal because he couldn't find any clue about Broken Ziya's murder. Whenever he saw Cemal, Ümit's neck had written İtalics in every language. While he was climbing up the stairs, he passed through the crowds, which increased insistently. The handcuffs were living the metal tiredness. The typewriter buttons were doing overtime to be able to catch up the records.

As soon as Ümit entered the office and sat down, Cemal appeared. They shared a cold hello reluctantly. A stubborn and transparent wall was still standing between them. Cemal put the cigarette in his mouth like a gun barrel. His fresh brewed tea accompanied the dance of the smoke with the anxiety of a latecomer cavalier. The rain that was cold outside and wanted to embrace the room's warmth was knocking on the window and asking permission for entry. 'Which silk road multiplies series of letter.'' ...This sentence coiled in Cemal's mind like a leech. Cemal was the locomotive of the murder table. He had solved many cases that looked impossible, and cuffed so many murderers’ ankles. Nonetheless they couldn't get even the smallest clue this time to save appearances. While looking at other cases, the obscurity of the beheaded murder was working like a mechanical clock at a corner of his mind.

Guilt was ahead of Punishment on the streets, with its holiday dresses. Unresolvedness was providing the spread of the fear like the Ebola virus rather than the interest and curiosity would diminish after the murder being covered on the media. Death cringed upon the whispers among public. He said to himself 'The insiders in the corner must be shaken one more time' looking at the cigarette butts resembling a communal cemetery in the ashtray.

(5)

A bunch of birds were flapping their wings in Jale's spirit cage. The kitchen became narrow for her enthusiasm. Cemal was coming to dine that night. While Jale was busy preparing to put her favorite dishes on the menu, Julide was also trying to squeeze in her favorites. Saying 'Cemal loves this more' they struggled a great deal, trying to put their favored dishes on top of the list. Pretending that they don't understand each other’s intentions was increasing the suspense. As time passed by the shape of all the objects on the counter started creating erotic connotations. Finally Jale got decisive. She had to whisper her desires to Cemal when she found the right time. Her libido suppressed her pride at the end. Two sisters were embroidering the table like a canvas. Whatever they added to the table, there was still something missing. The guest cutleries were arranged perfectly; the salads and appetizers were competing with each other....

Cemal left the office. His feet found the way automatically and he went down the stairs. Suddenly he found himself in the front yard and the question marks in his mind totally dispersed. He thought of walking a little. All day long he was imprisoned indoors like a lion in its cage. Evening was just beginning. Darkness was woven on the city like spider's web. The street lamps were illuminating the tiredness on the faces of those who were just leaving their offices.

The metal lightning bugs were passing by the pavements, buzzing. The sorrow was getting much bigger in the beer houses. The season left the parks disabled. The parks where ghettos of green were pressed between the concrete giants.

Sometimes life stops while passing, in the middle of the untidy symphony of the city...Swings knew silence by heart. The teetotalers couldn't find their balances for a long while. The ravens which were suppressing the nakedness of branches were agitating each other to prove Hitchcock right.

The cold breath of concrete's covering zone was expanding on the green space. The more human being's ego was fed, the more hungry it got...Cemal was strolling along the streets like a letter that has forgotten its address. His feet became like stone as he was passing by the district market. The vision that he encountered hit his face like a slap. Immediately a short autobiographical documentary had been released in his brain: He found himself in his primary school's garden, with his big uniform, bought intentionally two sizes bigger to be worn in the future.

Children flew away like sparrows and there was the fatherly image of teacher Kenan. Teacher Kenan passed by Cemal's childhood with a warm smile. And he just touched on the shoulder of his black uniform. Cemal was a motherless child and a heavyweight orphan.

They would carry their orphanage with them from the house to school with a group of his friends. Other children certainly knew this terrible loneliness and ruthlessly bled those open wounds with scoffing razor laughs. There was only teacher Kenan...It was only him that Cemal had compassion from. It was only him who fondled his head when he solved a difficult mathematical problem at the blackboard.

Cemal wouldn't be that happy even if the prune that he loved very much would sour his mouth; neither would he go to the cinema where he made his neck ache by looking at the movie posters that he passed by holding his breath. The pleasure of riding a bicycle should be something like this. The memories that were covered with chalk dust had been exploded like flashlight in Cemal's memory. He found himeslf again in the untidiness of the district market.

There was a rusty drill whirling in his heart: the retired teacher Kenan Dülger was collecting crushed fruits... Not knowing what to do, Cemal stood there paralyzed.

He thought maybe the teacher would have remembered him, because he helped him to enter Police Academy...He would rather not show up to him for preventing from his pride be hurt.  But how would, coming near and pretending not seeing him and helping him, be explained with his desire of paying the bill.  Cemal's feet went to right and left. He threw himself to the side street. He felt like a runaway soldier at wartime. Should he go back? He walked to the main street with this fire of duality. The concrete giants looked taller. It seemed as if the absence of humans were increased per square meter. The avenue covered him like a Tsunami.

Then, from the crowd, the same decisive and gentle hand found him and pressed on his chest. Cemal put his head up surprised and looked at the owner of the hand. It was him. But this time his eyes were like a lullaby: ''Hey kid! Never enter the black seas of melancholy; beware of the black hole of hopelessness! Even if life had destroyed your life like a robbed bank, never forget: ' Hope is most suitable for us'...Never forget boy! Beware of yourself....'' Swirling like a lark, he disappeared into the crowd.

Cemal stood looking behind the old man, looking like sun flowers turning their faces to the sun. He got on the first taxi that he saw. The further the car drove away, the nearer approached the bitter image in his brain.  As soon as he entered the neighborhood, he remembered that he was invited to dinner tonight. He got off the taxi at the beginning of the street and lit a cigarette. He wanted to pull himself together before he went to the landlords. The sisters would be offended from the bitter expression on his face. There was no other way than postponing the sorrow.

The doorbell which thought of itself a canary rang with a feeble voice. Julide popped out from the kitchen and Jale from the living room and headed to the door.

Julide with a swirling body attack, succeeded to pass Jalle and opened the door. He met Cemal with the spring joy of a university student, saying ''Welcome dear, come inside''.

''Hello, thank you...''

He entered inside by organizing his mimics to smiles as much as he could, but at this moment, it was a torture for him to look happy. His eyes were exposing his endless sorrow. Jale said, ''Hello Cemal, welcome'', the waves in her voice struck on Cemal's face. Just like Jülide, she also realized Cemal's attempt to cover his restlessness with a smile unskillfully fictionalized.

''Hello Jale”.
“Why do you look unhappy!?''
''Nothing important...I seem to have come across something that bothered me that's all...Whatever... Let's see what kind of goodies have you prepared for me?''
''Come and see for yourself.''
They all passed to the living room as Cemal was a bit confronted.
''Oh I'd say that only milk and honey is missing at the table, but definitely they are waiting their turn in the kitchen.''
''Come on we've done some bits and pieces that's all'' said Jale, giggling.

Then the parade of the food carnival started on the table. Both sisters pushed the appetizers and food they have prepared to Cemal's nose like an ultimatum, underlining who prepared what. They had sweet conversation, generally on ordinary issues; heavy matters had been slightly touched. Small and big laughter gad about in the living room. The cutlery became tired from heavy work. Then the first after dinner cigarettes were lit. Jale quickly smoked hers and ran to the kitchen to prepare coffee. She knew that in a while Cemal would go to the bathroom to brush his teeth as always. Cemal was one of those who wouldn't feel comfortable if he didn't brush his teeth after meals. For this reason a spare toothbrush was ready in the sisters’ bathroom to be used at dinner invitations...Sometimes sisters had erotic dreams with Cemal's toothbrush in their mouths, trying not to get caught by each other. Cemal's going into the bathroom was an opportunity for Jale not to be missed. At that instant she could slowly draw him to the kitchen and whisper to eat the forbidden fruit. She was terribly excited. She hardly put the water, coffee and sugar in the pot. On the one hand she couldn't believe what she was going to do, and on the other she couldn't help herself doing it. Her heart leaped to her mouth when she heard Cemal's footsteps. There was an adrenalin conquest to all her veins. Her ears started wuthering, her knees trembling. She whispered ''Come here a bit'' as Cemal was passing by the kitchen, by trying to avoid Jülide from hearing it.

Jülide noticed the situation yet she tried to ignore. She already got suspicious when Jale ran to the kitchen to make the coffee. There was something strange with Jale all day long anyway. She should have been definitely hanging on Cemal in the kitchen at this instant. She eliminated Jülide. Nervously she started to bend her fork, meshing her teeth. She have missed it again. Cemal was startled like a compass that lost its north while he left the kitchen and headed for the bathroom. As if he was walking on the water. He put his hands on the sink. He was afraid of meeting of the expression on his face if he put his head up. He didn't know what to find there. Trying to avoid eye contact with himself, he brushed his teeth. While Jülide started lighting her cigarette with nervous movements, Jale brought the coffees. Right afterwards Cemal entered the living room and sat down. There was a little Bermuda Triangle established at the table. Only the noises of coffee sips were heard. A sneaky silence was wandering around the table like a flock of vultures. After the coffee, Cemal asked for permission and left for home.

The Sisters’ home turned into an empty coffin again...

Cemal had already digested his dinner since a long time, and drank half of the wine bottle. He had turned over the picture of the red headed girl at the table. He put a jazz album on the stereo. He knew pretty well that jazz was the best to call out to the night. His head and heart were mixed like half used woollen balls that were forgotten in the corner of the drawer.

Cemal was afraid of untying himself. He was a leaf now, which was being dragged in the wild waters of his libido babbling like the Çoruh River. He was waiting for Jale like a seed that was ready to burst out. Outside night was being  performed like a cheap vaudeville on the stage that was called the city.   Jale pulled the door of their flat slowly not to wake her sister up.

She started going downstairs, caressing the stairs with her fingertips. Her heart was a self-performing drum with a lopsided rhythm, and her lungs was an old accordion that was trying to accompany a rock group.

Her hips would have cracked the thermometers at this moment. She was tasting her skin in the form of lust. She was a bullet that had left the barrel. When she reached Cemal's door, she came face to face with the lust that was hidden and chained in a corner. First she gulped, and then took a deep breath. As her meaty hand was pressing on the door bell, waving like a flag, she anxiously controlled her left hand to see if she had taken the Vaseline that she was already holding tightly. Jale rang the door of courage...

[To BE Continued]         (Translated by Metin Anli Edited by Aparajita Sen)






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