Could it be that Seyhan is actually informing us that in this world, where life is presented to us as if it were the reality of the past, present, future and destiny ('fate' or 'sorrow'), there is in fact nothing more than the surreal? It must be--the surreality of fortune images and the allegory of the mediocrity of conventional fortune discourse, signifying life caught between mediocrity and imagination. -- With Seyhan, 'rose' is a savior: An icon that can be anything and overcome anything. An icon that provides redemption from being caught between mediocrity and imagination! Seyhan attributes a miraculous, mystical (maybe even divine?) power to the rose... -- The power of the rose, that shall transform us not towards doing everything, but towards being everything. In 'Rosestrikes and Coffee Grinds' we see three paths: all of which are paths of the rose! In three spans of time: the rose shall come along those paths. -- And will bring us to itself... --Hilmi Yavuz
Seyhan Erozcelik s 'Rosestrikes and Coffee Grinds' has three layers of narrative: first, the physical arrangements of rosestrikes and coffee grounds that the reader never sees; second, the fortune reader's own interpretation of these casual arrangements through words; and third, the text that the reader simply encounters. All of these convergent layers unite in one point: what is said in the poem will be the reader's own future or, more precisely, the objective future of the anonymous other. --Efe Murad
In 'Eda: An Anthology of Contemporary Turkish Poetry,' Murat Nemet-Nejat established 'eda' as a marker of poetic process much as Lorca's duende or the Japanese concept of yugen had ignited similar interests in the century now behind us. The rootedness of mysticism in language, central to the poetics in question, finds a true exemplar in Seyhan Erozcelik's 'Rosestrikes and Coffee Grinds,' a work of both intelligence & passion. --Jerome Rothenberg
About the Author
Seyhan Erözçelik was born in 1962 in Bartin on the Black Sea, studied psychology at Boğaziçi University and oriental languages at Istanbul University. In 1986 he co-founded the Siir Ati (Horse of Poetry) publishing house which brought out over 40 poetry titles in 1980s. Since his 1986 debut with Yeis ile Tabanca
(Despair and Pistol
), he has published eight collections, including Kir Aği
, 1991), Gül ve Telve
(ROSESTRIKES AND COFFEE GRINDS, 1997) and Şehir'de Sansar Var!
(There Is a Marten in Town!
, 1999). His collected poems were published in 2003 and his latest book is Varidik, Yoğidik
(Once We Were, We Weren't
, 2006). He has also written poems in the Bartin dialect and in other Turkic languages, and has brought a modern approach to the classical Ottoman verse style, aruz
, in his book Kara Yazili Meşkler
(Tunes Written on the Snow
, 2003). His translations into Turkish include the poetry of Osip Mandelstam and C. P. Cavafy. He lives in Istanbul.