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Kurdish song composed for George Floyd: Hevalê Reş

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Kurdish song composed for George Floyd: Hevalê Reş


A song in Kurdish has been composed for George Floyd, who was killed by a police officer kneeling on his neck in the US on May 25, 2020.

Written by Ercan Şeker, composed by Ali Papur and arranged by Christian Walter, the song is sung by Öznur in her EP album “İz” (Trace).

With most of the instruments played by Christian Walter as well, the song has been translated into Turkish, English and German.

“Hevalê Reş”, a jazz song, is based on the idea that Blacks and Kurds share a common fate. Öznur briefly says the following about the song:

‘It was an expression of racism’

“While the US police officer was kneeling on George Floyd’s neck and strangling him, a life was being sacrificed for a color.

“That knee pushing his neck with all its grudge was not an instant rage; what we witnessed was an expression of racism, which has seen itself superior and has been accumulated throughout history.

“As I knew it, I wanted to extend my hand, put it under his head touching the ground and add my breath to his… To make his lamenting voice be heard by the world… To cry out loud… I wanted to give a new life to the world.

“Then, I wanted to become a wave of rage, boil over and destroy as many as the racist there are. But it did not happen.

“George bid farewell to us, with his eyes staring at ours. It was when the lyrics of this song turned into a fist and fell into our hands.”

‘Two continents turned into one’

She also says the following about the song being in Kurdish:

“Then, the plastic boxes stuck in my conscience. Human bones squeezed into boxes… As if they had not grown in a mother’s womb little by little for 9 months, as if they had not been filled with life little by little by the mother… No trace… As if they were all dead… Just like a pile of dry bones, they were all put in small plastic boxes, buried under a road in Kilyos.

In fact, those mothers’ eyes are always on TV, their ears always on the phone… They always keep their doors open, thinking when and where bad news will come. They buried the bones under the road because they were unaccounted for… That was when our conscience turned two continents into one.

“Whenever George Floyd’s head was pushed onto that pavement, the bones under that road were aching tremendously. Everytime George was breathless, so were those bones. The warm breath of George perhaps passed through the pavement and reached the bones.

“They are lamenting not in their language or not for themselves, but for George across the continents. While they could have raised a life together, the two peoples have met in death. Kurds and Blacks… The killed, deprived of a grave, with their grave stones broken down…”

Öznur’s song

Lyrics in English

Why this world is tight for me
We were left without villages and cities
Our language became our sister and brother
Your color is my color, my black friend

You are not breathless my black friend
Your lungs are huge like a savanna
Your tiers drip drop by drop
Your tiers landed slowly on the streets of cities

I am a flower from mountains, from top of the mountains
You are the darkness of darkness in the city
I will be your sun and moon
you, be water and color to me

Lyrics in Turkish and Kurdish

HEVALÊ REŞ (George Floyd’a)
Ew dinya jimara cima teng e,
(Bu dünya neden bize dar)
Bê gund bê bajêr mane em,
(Şehirsiz ve köysüz kaldık )
Zimanê me û tu bu ye xang û bira,
(Dilimiz kız ve erkek kardeş olmuş)
Renga te ranga min e hevalê reş
(Senin rengin bızım rengimizdir siyah arkadaş)

Tu bê nefes nin î hevalê Reş,
(Sen nefessiz değilsin siyah arkadaş)
Kezeba te mezin e weka deşt,
(Senin ciğerin bir Ova kadar büyük)
Histerên te hatın dilop dilop,
(Gözyaşların damla damla aktı )
Daket riya bajaran da seynik seynik
(İndi şehir caddelerinden yavaş yavaş)

Ez kulilka çiyanım le kulilka serê çiyan
(Ben dağların başındaki çiçek )
Tu li nav tarî yê le tari yé bajaran
(Sen şehrin içindeki ”karanlık”)
Ez bibim roj û hiv a te
(Ben senin Güneş’in ve Ay’ın olayım)
Tu bibî av û renga min
(Sen benim suyum ve rengim ol)


Source: Bianet

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