Georgian Literary Portal Shares Ashig Alasgar Poetry
1 TV. Eleqtroliti, a reputable Georgian-language literary e-portal, has put on its webpage verses by Azerbaijan’s great poet Ashig Alasgar, as part of the AzSTC project “Azerbaijani Literature in a Virtual World”.
His poems, such as Falling in Love, He Got to Know, I am Not Offended, Gullu, Gulandam, Don't Go, Stay, at the same time his life and creativity were shared through a presentation dedicated to the poet’s 200th anniversary.
The translator of the poems is Imir Mammadli, who has also authored the foreword.
Launched in 2017 by the Georgia Public Broadcasting Company, 1 TV. Eleqtroliti gives precedence to fiction samples (prose, verses and dramatic literature), as well as critical and publicist work.
Georgian readers have open access to electronic versions of works from world-famous authors, such as Omar Khayyam, Jalaluddin Rumi, Paul Verlaine, Arthur Rimbaud, Philip K. Dick, Thomas Wolfe, Leo Ferre, John Cheever, Anne Enright, Herta Müller, Hans Magnus Enserberger, Olga Tokarczuk, Georges Brassens, Peter Handke, Lucy Fletcher, Lawrence Ferlinghetti, Jacques Brel, Lev Rubinstein, John Maxwell Coetzee, Norbert Hummelt, Susan Sontag, Franz Holler, to name a few.
Ashig Alasgar, who lived for more than a century, is widely considered to be one of the outstanding Azerbaijani poets reaching a pinnacle in poetry. It can be certainly noted as a long life for both the poet himself and poetry – some kind of life full of joy and pain, elevation and sorrow, mirrored in a large number of poetic masterpieces of Azerbaijani literature...
Alasgar was born on 21 March 1821, in Agkilse, a village in the Goycha District, the Erivan Khanate. The mystic troubadour (Ashik) who lived such a life and left his mark on Azerbaijani literature was nicknamed as “Dada Alasgar” like Dada Gorgud, a symbol of wisdom for Azerbaijani people. This honourable name is considered as a symbol of respect and sympathy in the Turkic world.
Ashig Alasgar wrote mainly in the genres of Azerbaijani classical poetry – Goshma and Garaily - forms of Azerbaijani classical poetry. He sang all his poems accompanied by saz - an Azerbaijani folk musical instrument. As contemporaries stated, he was the most talented performer of his time. Thanks to his highly artistic poetry and music, he traveled almost all over the South Caucasus (he also visited Tbilisi many times) and became famous at various parties for his deeply sensible ashig music. It should be noted that most of his poems were written in spontaneous melody at musical parties. Like Spanish and French troubadours or modern bards, ashigs traveled from city to city, from village to village to glorify beauty.
Apparently, for his incomparable performing talent he was nicknamed “ashig”. In fact, his poetry is higher than ashig poetry, and, as already mentioned, these immortal verses are masterpieces of Azerbaijani literature, in other words, those that Alasgar contributed to the world through strings. The word “ashig” means “ozan”, and in the Georgian language this word is pronounced in several modified forms – “mgosan” (songwriter).
Although Dada Alasgar lived until the 1920s, his photo has not survived to this day. The photo, presented in the form of his images, is based on memoirs by his contemporaries and relatives. In fact, the most accurate portrait of Alasgar is his verses, in which the poet is an exceptionally attractive man, thinker, poet, eternal lover and herald of justice.
This spiritual portrait of Dada Alasgar’s poetry is painted with Georgian words, reaching the Georgian readership for the first time.
I hope, I have managed at least partially to reflect the rich shades and twinkling features peculiar to Dada Alasgar’s poetic self-portrait in Georgian.
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