Sunday, December 21, 2008
I often listen to Armenian music in my car. I normally can't do this at home because my husband protests that most of the songs I listen to are too sad, or my daughter remembers that she could actually listen to music on the CD player and wants to change it. Any way, some things are better done in solitude. The beauty of most the songs I listen to amaze me, specially the very old folk songs or songs by Sayat Nova. At least with the latter we know who the author is but with the folk songs the authors are always unknown. For a nation who was persecuted, massacred, and driven from her homeland for centuries the existence of this much profound poetry is nothing short of a miracle. When you listen you can picture the natural beauty of the land, the people's dreams, their pain and suffering and yet there is always hope, pride, and gratitude. Through the musical instruments used, I can hear the brooks gurgling, the sparkle of the springs, the cry of a broken heart. Through the words I can picture lake Sevan shimmer, Araz river overflow, spring come and snow fall. It breaks my heart to hear a song in which a mother tells her son to grow and become a solder to fight for the defenseless Armenian nation and only then she would bless him. In one song a mother is praising her daughter's beauty and wants her to go out into the field to fetch water knowing she might be kidnapped or worse but wants her to enjoy life and the new spring. Evey song I hear is testimony to the tortured life the Armenians lived under Turkish rule. The threat of raids, mass murders or forced deportations were everyday life occurrences and yet they made poetry and song that lifts the spirit and makes me understand the purpose of humankind. Since I can remember and had a sense of self I have been proud of my nation, of my people, only by knowing more about everything Armenian I have fallen in love all over again. I regret everyday that I don't live in Armenia and I yearn that someday I shall. Every single song and poetry or book that I read reminds me that my final destination is Armenia. I want to live and die among people who have such rich cultural heritage and have given me such joy my entire life.