“WHAT IS PLEASURE?” OR “I CLIMBED UP THE ROSE, I DID NOT DIE”

“WHAT IS PLEASURE?” OR “I CLIMBED UP THE ROSE, I DID NOT DIE”

We spend good times with beautiful people without even recognizing what kind of blessings they are to us. Life is like that; we only realize the importance of the blessings that are bestowed upon us when we lose them. When I say ‘we’ I mean the human kind. Besides its actual meaning in the ballad, ‘realizing’ can also be understood as receiving the truth. However, spontaneousness has its unique information coded within itself, before even we realize it passes its information on to us.

Even though, the lyrics to the first stanza of the ballad remains the same in Ürgüp, Isparta and Tavşanlı regions, its tune is different in Ürgüp. I am talking about the ballad called “My Şerife,” as it is commonly referred as “My Şefre” among the folks. You might also have come across to it named as “I climbed up the rose, I didn’t enjoy.”

“I climbed up the rose, I didn’t enjoy:” As delicate as a rose bush is, the idea of climbing up one has a connoting part. An inconvenient job… It has thorns as well as petals. And, in the continuing of the ballad, the poet does fall but does not die. One can fill many pages by writing about “climbing up the rose but not enjoying it” or “falling down from the rose and not dying at the end.” Actually, there are numbered works that talk about the relation between the blessings and burdens but this one discusses the subject with aesthetic and on top of it, it saves many words… I have also written a different article about this ballad in the past.

Let us move on! “Our journey together had been fun/I hadn’t realized:” This is just as translating a status photo, which keeps getting deeper and darker and its deepness cannot be measured, into a second language. It is a struggle to explain why the poet did not enjoy climbing up the rose and did not die after falling from it while keeping the actual reason as a secret for the whole time…        

The ballad is as follows:
I climbed up the rose, I didn’t enjoy
I fell down from the rose, I didn’t die
Our journey together had been fun
(My Şerife, you’ve set me on fire)
I hadn’t realized

Her window had bars
My Şerife’s cheeks were like apples
I had demanded her hand
She had not surrendered
(My Şerife, you’ve set me on fire)

As if her daughter were so precious
Lemon in the gardens
The lemon I do not take
Beauty, where are you going?
(My Şerife, you’ve set me on fire)

If it were I, I could not leave

This is the version of the ballad, which is commonly performed in the Aegean region. It is based on the Kütahya collection.

Also, there is another record that belongs to Refik Başaran of Ürgüp. The last two stanzas of the ballad are different in this one, although its tune remains the same. I hope I don’t offend the poet but it goes just as you read it only there is no sign of his “Şerife.”

I climbed up the rose, I didn’t enjoy
I fell down from the rose, I didn’t die
Our journey together had been fun
I hadn’t realized

At the meadow
I herd the cattle
Because of my Hayriye, I was hit
Hundred fifty times with a stick

I got thinner, became a reed
I wept, became silver
Since I have fallen for you
Became a bird without a nest

Whom should we listen to this ballad?
If you’d ask my opinion, I think you should listen to the ballad called “My Şerife” from Tuğba Ger. She sings and plays and she has a ‘tone.’