Weather poems

by Sadri Hamid from the journal Ak Yul (1967–1977)

English translation Sabira Ståhlberg

Read the poems in Tatar Latin script (original and modern language) and Tatar Cyrillic script

See Tatar weather glossary

Autumn months

Who would love the autumn months, yellowing aspen, birch,

weather becoming colder when winter approaches.

Because of the white thick [frost] crust, the earth is mottled,

how could plants ever endure facing this death?

In forests and gardens, the green branches have all dried,

a cold wind chases after fallen yellow leaves.


When October enters: fields and hills turn ugly

And a bad sickness of death is flying around.

Green is gone from large meadows, marshes and gardens,

from birches, willows, each aspen: faded leaves are falling.

When the world sees the whiteness of the cold snow it undresses,

thick, sturdy oaks also drop their leaves, crying.


Evening arrived, darkness spread, sun vanished sinking far away

and people tired from work went to sleep.

And songbirds no longer fly high,

the garden, look, all fields have dived into black.

And the sky is distant, the tiny moon shares its light only slightly

no sound is heard, as if the world is dead.

Various weathers

The weather is bad, day is dark, sky covered with clouds,

sunlight is invisible, many clouds cover it.

Rain is falling, thundering, crash crack lightnings.

If I say: one hundred flashes per minute, I will not err.

The day is so frightening, like the end of the world, I’d say.

Praise be to Allah! May He save us from lightnings.

In one home, the weather is inside like outside.

As if there was thunder, flashes and rain falling.

The wife is furious for a fight, scolding her sitting husband,

her man with a bent head, who came home drunk.

The whole house is brr – shaking, and dishes are flying here and there,

also past the head of the poor man.

God still protects him, no damage is seen.

Even if his head was wounded, the wife has no pity.

Like a guilty man, he does not dare open his mouth,

outdoors is such bad weather, no use to flee.

How could he run away? He is so drunk

his legs will not carry him. How did he ever reach home?

After reproaching her husband for a long time, the wife seemed to stop.

The man appeared to be sleeping with his head down.

Although the wife was so angry a moment ago,

she soon started smiling and laughing,

came closer and wrapped her hands round his neck.

Oh, those women! You would be surprised now, if you were there,

if you saw how she embraces her husband.

Thus they forgave each other

No anger or grudge was left between them.

As a radiating sunrise, the home was again filled with light,

without any uproar, household tasks were began again.

Joyfully the husband did as if kissing his wife and

as if sober raised his head and were as going to work.

In the meantime, outside the sun came out again, it was serene

no rain, no thunder, it is a wonderfully beautiful spring.

We know that the days of God are never similar,

if yesterday was beautiful, today it is cloudy.

In the same way, the days of humans are different.

Although wives occasionally scold – it does not matter.

Like snow

Even if I write on paper, it is as if [I was] writing in white snow.

Just like winter days are to fields, streets, courtyards.

What is written in snow does not last long

just like what is drawn with a stick.

As soon as spring comes, they melt away

waters soak into the ground and are gone.

What I write on paper melts

like snow and disappears.

Some people maybe read, others tear up and throw away,

our Tatars do not bother with small matters.


Sometimes night wind comes to bang on the window.

Not every day, and just enough to wake.

It lets others sleep peacefully,

hardly even beating at their windows.

At midnight all are asleep,

if they do not slumber, they are drinking.

On writers’ windows it raps like this:

from sleep: get up! It wakes you up.

Some people the wind rouses in the morning

without frightening them, just quietly tapping.

Thus, the sounds of the blowing wind

strengthen the exhausted writer.

Eastern wind

The wind blows, hammering at the windows,

glass panes are rattling and tinkling.

One window broke, wrenching the heart

Luckily only one.

Of two windows it shattered one

I immediately cover the smashed window.

I beg of the wind: be reasonable!

Do not break the window which is intact.

The wind does not possess ears,

although I pray, it does not listen.

It shattered the whole window, too.

Are we really to freeze to ice?

Merciless is that eastern wind,

it does not pity anyone.

That is why it has not for decades

changed its direction either.

The sun rose

Unexpectedly the sun rose, red from the East.

For a long time it refrained from rising,

those who saw it rise went crazy.

The sky dawned and filled with rays

and the world was enlightened.

Small and big [people] became friends

and all souls rejoiced.

Locks broke, chains snapped

as if it was a holy year.

Doors and gates opened

which had been closed for fifty years.

No need to travel secretly, fleeing,

in fear, glancing around.

The roads are open in both directions,

freedom to come and go.

Distinguished guests arrived

from faraway, memorable Kazan.

Who would have thought of something like this?

No one had come from there.

The guests were true Tatars,

two elderly men, one young woman.

Ears listened to words in Tatar language

for two weeks without pausing.

When we met them, we braced ourselves,

became considerably stronger.

We spoke loudly

in all directions, a revenge to others.

The enemies should know that

there are still Tatars, Tatar language.

How could such a tribe disappear?

Half of Russia is Tatar lands…

Day does not brighten, morning does not dawn

Day does not brighten, morning does not dawn

no sunrise is to be seen.

Who understands the Creator’s workings?

Does He keep the sun in the shade.

Other nations live in brightness,

happy like friends.

Our nation is working for foreigners

like jailed, prisoners.

I do not pray to the gods begging

for bright days for us.

We will not see such days, even

when we believe that God exists.

Spring news

Snows that fell last winter did not last even five months.

When the radiant warm sun rose, they melted away in May.

Frozen rivers discarded their big ice covers, too.

Suddenly the earth’s surface began to change.

People have no coats on, all clothes are very light.

Women cut off the sleeves of their dresses.

In the sky, many kinds of birds are singing, greeting spring.

Parks and gardens thus turned green within a short time.

Pitch-black lands and meadows transform into green shawls.

Probably not even a month passed until the surface of the ground unexpectedly changed.

Small children run rejoicing and splashing along waters.

Rich people are resting in their summer villas with their big bellies sticking up in the air.