A Man Who Saw With His Heart

Aşık Veysel is a modern folk poet who lived in Anatolia. His simple quatrains are an expression of the emotions of the Anatolian people.

Veysel came into this world in the Central Anatolian village of Sivrialan in Şarkışla township of Sivas province on a cold October day in 1894. Already having lost one eye to smallpox when he was still a child, he lost the other soon afterwards in an accident and was suddenly plunged into a world of total darkness. Life was not kind to Veysel, but he was undaunted. He loved the world and all that was in it and saw it with his heart, which is perhaps why his words and melodies have never left our lips and have always spoken to our innermost selves. Taking Anatolia’s earlier minstrel poets as his models and mentors, he became ‘Âşık Veysel’, and echoes of his forerunners such as Dadaloğlu, Yunus Emre, Emrah and Karacaoğlan are audible in his lines. Traveling all over Anatolia, he planted the seeds of love and kindness in human hearts with his verses, which he composed in simple, understandable Turkish. When he died on March 21, 1973, he left behind seven children, three books of collected works and a name that will never be forgotten.

The works of Åşık Veysel have been collected in three books: Poems and Sayings (1944) / Sounds from my Saz (1950) / May My Friends Remember Me (1970).