Handful of Ashes


Words: Siamant’o, Music: Caroline Lavelle

Alas, you were like a grand and magnificent mansion. And I, from the white summit of your roof, in the light of the star-studded night, listened to the fearsome flow of the Euphrates below. I heard with tears, with tears, that on a day of horror massacre and blood, your broad walls were shattered stone by stone, and thrown on the gardena around you. Did the blue room also turn to ashes, where, within it’s walls and carpets, my happy childhood rejoiced, my life grew and my soul took flight? My fathers’ home! Be assured that when I die, my soul will come to you as an exiled turtledove to sing in tears it’s song of sorrow over your black ruins. But tell me. Who will bring to me a handful of your sacred ashes the day I die, to put in my grave and mix with my ashes, a singer of the homeland? A handful of ashes with my own, ancestral home. Who will bring a handful of ashes from your ashes? Of your memories, your suffering and your past. A handful of ashes to scatter over my heart.

Translated from the Armenian by Garbis Yessayan.

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