On Kurdish Poetry and Inspiration

Kurdish poetry               One who appreciates the beauty of a language would make a craft out of it. The greatness of any language is unleashed by beautiful poetry. Poetry, the ones which sing to our hearts and rhyme within our minds, is a combination of simple words coming together to give a strong meaning.
Looking back at classic Kurdish poetry, one can feel how it has fed the souls of our forefathers and lightened their pain. The success of a poet lies in a point where once his poems are read the readers feel like they could relate.
At times when Kurds would fight for freedom and justice, men of poetry stole inspiration from the war. The words of battle were not only written for light reading, but also to encourage others towards asking for their own rights which have been stripped from them.
Similarly, love was a battlefront for the Kurds. Writing about separation from the beloved pushed Kurdish poetry into a spinning, flirty world. To conclude for total, the factors that have affected Kurdish poetry are: war and forbidden love.
Kurdish anthology, including literature and poetry, was at its peak one hundred and fifty years ago. The mingling of the Kurdish language gave a new taste to Kurdish poetry. When more than one dialect was used, the sense of the mumble of the words coming together gave poetry warmness. Once the poetry was read, the contagious rhythm would accompany the readers’ heads.
After World War I, when the entire world was suffering from the aftermath of the conflicts, so were the Kurds. At that era the reflection of poetry on men was as clear as the blue sky. It increased the humanity on an individual level. Poets affected the regions extremely. The engagement with the environment was necessary.
A shining sensation burned through the pages and words of true meaning were written down. Love and war entered into texts of poetry through inspiration and pain. Those poets who could reach out to Kurdish hearts back in their times were: Piramerd, Dildar, Hemin, Goran, Jgar Khwen, and Bekas.
The late Bekas who left the world with treasures wrote:

Don’t say I’m a woman, you’re just like me
In need of science, art, and education
Forced to work and favoring the community
Get up and fight until your blood is warm
Throw the veil away, it represents shyness

               Here we see how the poet advocates for women’s rights and responsibilities, and how he asks them to pursue learning and work to make Kurdistan a better place.
Abdulla Pashew’s example of patriotic poetry is:

When a delegation goes to a place
To visit the grave of a lost soldier
They bring a bouquet of flowers
If tomorrow a delegation comes to my land
And asks me for the grave of the lost soldier
I would say: my lord,
It’s in the beginning of every river
It’s at the top of every mosque
It’s in front of each door


Many of the poems have been changed into songs. This is why until today the souls of the poets and their poems live with us in the community. The beauty is in seeing how the singers give the words their true strengths.

By: Dlbar Hama Ali

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