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A Sea Nomad

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He who does good deed, will be endowed for it, he who does harm, will be punished for of his harm.

Koran — Kerim, Al-Zelzele, 7—8

Be devoted till death…

Apocalypse: 10

A flower complains to the dawn sky which has lost all of its stars: “I have lost my dew drop”

R. Toqor


Of course, you know languages of animals; birds, fishes, and you can talk with them. You can even have a talk with grass and flowers too. But what about people around you? Can you understand their language? And also do you believe that those people feel and understand you? Why do you keep silence? Why don’t you answer?

This unusual event isn’t a made up story. I heard it from an old fisherman


…. but there was not a piece of news from Tuqay till that time.

The woman didn’t know what to do.

Still it was daytime. But it seemed thee woman that it had already became dark.

The sun had set before its time.

The woman was frightened. Firstly, in a whisper, then loudly she began to call her son: “Tuqay, my son…” Her trembling voice seemed strange even to herself too. As if this voice was coming from far, from the bottom of a well.

Time passed without being felt, within silence. As if the silence had created a cold curtain over everything, a curtain which was impossible to be seen with eyes; which could be felt only by the heart.

There was not a piece of news from Tuqay.

“Tuqay, my son….Where are you?”


On the outskirts of a small village there were two small houses the yards of which were adjacent, the roofs of which were covered with red tiles. While looking from afar, the roofs of the houses looked like a pair of rabbit ears. In one of those houses there lived a young boy by the name of Tuqay, with his mother. The inhabitant of the other house was a girl in the name of Shahla. About her a bit later. …Still let’s continue our talk about the village and Tuqay.

The inhabitants of this village, mostly were engaged in fishing. It is true, the sea was much further from the village; even from there the sea wasn’t seen. But smelling of the gigantic sea, its smelling of dampness and seaweed was clearly felt. The people usually did their work according to the direction of the wind that blew from the sea; they tried to go to fishing at a suitable time.

That day was one of the ordinary days.

Tuqay’s mother went out to the yard, put her hand above her eye and looked at the sky. From far there were seen grey clouds. When mother saw that the grey clouds were becoming dark, she was upset. It appeared that the clouds were gathering above the sea. According to mother, Tuqay should have returned from the sea. Her heart was full of anxiety: “I wonder, why is my son late? Maybe there is a storm in the sea? Maybe no fish fell into a net? Maybe something has happened? Maybe… “The eyes of mother stared at the road. But there was not a piece of news from Tuqay.

The boy who had lost his father when he was little, had seen much difficulty of life; if needed he helped the neighbors together with his mother. Though the family consisted of only two persons, life was impossible. In the village the number of those who lived good lives was few, was a few. As if the God had forgotten forever the gigantic sea which was near, and the small village near the giant sea, and the inhabitants of this small village. “No, it appears that we have forgotten our God, my son… God never forgets people. Not everybody understands that in order to live, it is necessary to toil much. God values all the toils of people, my son… “Tuqay’s mother often used to repeat these words.

Tuqay wasn’t afraid of working much. The prayers said by his mother at times in a whisper and at times loudly, increased his love for work.

Recently, Tuqay had made friends with the fishermen. Sometimes he went to the open sea to fish even at nights. Most of the fishes that fell into the nets were sold. At times, some little fishes given by the old fisherman with whom Tuqay went to fishing were brought home by Tuqay. At such times mother was very happy seeing that her son could earn his living.

The woman knew very well that her son doesn’t earn his living easily. She also was aware that her son was a witness and a participant for some time the fight of the fishermen. Of course, the struggles of those old fishermen who fought for the possession of area of the sea which were rich with fish, those who wanted to “divide” the sea, like naughty children, were both funny and sorrowful. It is obvious that during the fight of those rude “sea people” some merciless fishermen found a chance and attacked Tuqay too. But Tuqay never said to his mother about their fighting; the woman had heard about the fight from the other neighbors, and in the bottom of her heart she was pleased with his son’s being able to keep secrets and had said to him in her heart: “Well done, my son!”. He who can keep secrets, his character is also distinguished from others for good.

There was not a piece of news from Tuqay.

“Tuqay, where are you, my son?”


It wasn’t only mother who was worried because of Tuqay’s being late. The dog which was fussing in the yard, stared its big and lackluster eyes at the far skylines. It always knew beforehand when its “friend” would return from the sea. That is to say before Tuqay’s return from the sea, the dog used to wait at the gate silently and stare at the road. In fact, not only mother and the dog were waiting for Tuqay. The other “friends” of Tuqay- the eagle and fish were also fussing in anxiety.

Tuqay loved animals and birds very much. In the yard he had made good places for his “friends”. The dog lived in its small shack made of mud and canes, the eagle lived in the roof of the house, and the fish lived in the pool. The dog, the eagle and the fish not only were friends of Tuqay, they also made friends with one another. The nearby neighbors who were aware of the solidarity between them, were astonished; how can it be? From morning till evening the dog and the eagle spend the time together. And it isn’t still all! On hot days the dog and the eagle visited the pool in which the fish lived; during that time three of them, the dog, the eagle and the fish jumped up and down in the pool, they made noise even like naughty children making jokes with one another. Mother and Tuqay who firstly gave no attention to their acts, now didn’t doubt that the animals had already found a common language to speak to one another, even to speak like humans. These strange living beings which are not friends by the nature’s lap had been the real friends in this yard.

Tuqay had also given names to his “friends”. He called the fish, the clever eyes of which shone brightly, as Yaqut, he called the eagle which spread its wings widely, Ayqut, and the dog walking in the yard Qayut. If you pay attention, all these names had been formed from Tuqay’s name. The most interesting and strangest of all was that all of them understood their names very well. While Tuqay called “Ayqut”, the eagle flew, came nearer to him and perched on his shoulders. When the dog heard its name, that is to say, Qayut, within a twinkle it would come near Tuqay and sitting on its hind legs it would bark. Yaqut wasn’t indifferent to the calling of its friend too; as soon as the fish heard its name from Tuqay, it used to go out of the water and jump up, after drawing arch in the air used to plunge in the bottom of the pool.

At times, when there was nobody in the yard, the “friends” gathered around the pool and “had a talk” in their own “languages” for a long time.

Sometimes Tuqay also joined them and used to listen to their “talk”. If somebody looked at them from aside, would think that they were speaking about


There were separate episodes as to how Tuqay became acquainted with each of his “friends”.

The dog was presented him by one of his far relatives. The matter was that Tuqay’s relative had once found a dog in the forest, then he domesticated that dog; then he wanted to get rid of the puppies of that mother dog, and put them into a bag and brought to one of the far hamlets; from there he had returned his home. After some days, one of the puppies had traveled the lengthily way and found its owner. Though that man tried to mislead that puppy for some times, there was no result; the sage puppy had returned back from all the” journeys”. When the owner was sick of it and tried to arrive at a final decision on how to do away with it, Tuqay had come to them as a guest. Tuqay who listened to the

“bravery” of the puppy had put it into his bag and brought it home. The puppy which was bounded with a chain for some days then was accustomed to the yard. Soon it was untied from the chain. And its wish to leave this kind family had disappeared forever.

Tuqay’s friendship with the eagle also had its own story. One day while Tuqay was returning from the sea, he heard rustling from the rocky place. Firstly he thought that it could be a snake. That was why he wanted to go by an other road. But after some time as soon as seeing a huge bird at the bottom of the rock, he stopped; the eagle which had taken shelter in the bottom of the rock, the eyes full of malice and hatred stared at Tuqay. It appeared that “the sky tiger “was wounded. For some time Tuqay and the eagle remained face to face, eye to eyes. Then the boy came nearer to the eagle carefully; he stooped and smoothed its head carefully. The bird wanted to stretch out its head and open its wings. Just only at that time Tuqay saw that one of the wings of the eagle couldn’t be opened. Then Tuqay saw that under the wing which couldn’t be opened there was dropping blood. He wasn’t mistaken. The eagle stretched out one of its legs and put its talon on the shoulder of Tuqay in a friendly way. Tuqay considered such “an act” as a sign of the future friendship. He stooped and took the eagle, and brought it his home. Tuqay’s mother put some oil on the wound of the eagle and banded its wing. Soon the eagle recovered. But it appeared that it wasn’t going to leave the yard. Even once Tuqay took the eagle and brought it to the place where he had first seen it, to the rocky place at the seashore. When the boy returned home he saw that the eagle had come back home before him; it was already in the yard and was having a “talk” with the dog which it had already made friends.

Tuqay had found the fish from the inside of a fisherman’s net and brought home. Usually different kinds of fishes fall into the nets. But neither the experienced fishermen nor young Tuqay had seen such kind of fish in the waters; it was a silvery, graceful and fine creature. The strange acts of that creature which Tuqay called afterwards “Yaqut” drew his attention; it jumped up and down like the best dancers and quickest sportsmen. How? It stood on its tail upright and revolved round either to the right or to the left, like a roller, and played funnily like clowns. Tuqay was pleased with himself for he rescued that fish from the greedy fishermen and brought it home. Firstly, mother couldn’t be accustomed to the fish. But then she liked it and became accustomed to Yaqut; the woman who wasn’t tired of watching the dancing of the fish in her free time, at times, couldn’t help herself from laughing, she used to laugh heartily.

There was not a piece of news from Tuqay. The noise of the “friends” wasn’t heard either. Shahla who used to visit mother during this time wasn’t seen from some reasons.

Mother who was worried because of Tuqay’s being late was also upset while seeing the sorrowful appearance of these animals having no tongue to speak. But what had happened to them? Maybe they had felt anything? Maybe they knew anything?

— What is the matter with you? Why don’t you “speak”?

These words of the mother, said unexpectedly surprised herself too. But whom was she addressing to? The eagle? The fish? The dog? It is interesting, were they able to understand anything from the words of mother?

The woman was much surprised. So, the “friends” which heard the appeal of mother gathered round the pool and began to “speak” firstly in a low voice then loudly and began to discuss something.

Then there was again silence. The dog went out of the yard all of a sudden. Only just then mother remembered that once there had happened such an event; at that time Qayut had “found” Tuqay who was late. It became clear, that day there had begun a storm in the sea and for that reason Tuqay had spent the night together with his fisherman friend in the shack of the guard of the forest. Afterwards Tuqay said that the dog had caught by the hem of his coat and brought him the home, to his mother. Maybe Tuqay again spent the night in the forest, in that shack? Maybe the dog again will find its friend and bring him home?

But this time the dog returned too early. It was to say that Tuqay wasn’t near. Because mother knew very well that the dog’s talent of sensing, by inheritance can’t deceive the dog.

As soon as the dog returned, the eagle came nearer to it. The eagle spread its wings widely and stared at Qayut for some time. The dog began to bark. Yaqut which heard the sorrowful, hoarse barking of the dog began to flounder in the pool. The eagle screamed loudly and flew into the air and spreading its wings went round above the house for some time.

Just at that moment a girl entered the yard; yes, she was the neighbor, Shahla. As if that girl had come to the village from the world of tales. She was a shy, slender girl. How to say she can be compared to the Moon or to the sun. Shahla had got only a mother in this world. How strange, as if the God had created the mother and her daughter on the contrary; the mother was unsociable, the girl was charming…

For a while the woman as if awoken from a dream; she went towards the girl, and welcomed the neighbor girl who had come to the yard as silently as a shadow.

— How do you do, aunt?

— How do you do, my daughter?

— I have come hearing the screams of the eagle. Has there been any accident?

— Accident? …No… But Tuqay hasn’t returned from the sea. I am very much worried, my daughter….

— If God pleases, he will return, my aunt. Don’t be worried.

For some reason the girl’s voice was slightly trembling. In fact, Shahla tried not to show her secret anxiety; but it appeared that she couldn’t. Her anxiety had its reasons. The last night Shahla had watched the twinkling stars while lying in her bed, at the window. She had fallen asleep while watching the stars in the endless and secret sky; as if the stars were dropping “hints” to one another. Towards dawn the girl had dreamed. Tuqay’s small boat was sailing forward in the waters. In the waters there were a lot of endless various flowers. The most surprising was that the bed on which Shahla was sleeping, to tell the truth the wooden bed, was sailing in the lap of waters after the boat of Tuqay. Tuqay was waving his hands smiling, and at times was sending her “air –kisses”. As if Shahla’s bed had turned to a boat. The scent of the various flowers spread on the colored waters had made Shahla faint in her dream. And Shahla could be able to use the chance and brunch some of those flowers. The water drops from the bright petals of the flowers splashed water on Shahla’a face and throat. Because of some reasons those cold drops had scorched Shahla’s face like heat. When Shahla woke up, she was astonished while wiping the drops of rain dropping on her face through the open window; my God, those drops of rain were as hot as the drops she had dreamed of; the drops were hot. It appeared that the warmth of the “air-kisses” of Tuqay had been soaked into those cold drops. Shahla raised herself in the bed, closed the window; through the glass of the window a beautiful girl was looking at her. The feeling of admiration inside of her heart increased drop after drop and turned into hot water; she could hardly know herself.! She was already brought up. As if during those moments, an outsider was watching her. Nevertheless, she was sleeping in her bed lonely as before. The cheeks of the girl blushed.

Still the girl was under the influence of her strange dream. Still she could feel the scent of the flowers she had dreamed of. “I wonder, has anything happened with Tuqay? “Shahla was frightened while thinking about fearful events. But she could pull herself together.

Mother knew that one of those who missed Tuqay was the neighbor girl. Mother could feel it from her pure eyes, like the water of spring, from her anxiety of her trembling voice:

— See, the eagle returned.

Shahla who had raised her head, said those words.

Really, it was the eagle. The eagle drew a circle in the air and perched on the pool. The fish reached out its head and looked at the eagle. The dog also came nearer to them. Shahla paid attention to the acts of the “friends”.


— As if they are having a “talk”, — she said in surprise.

Mother smiled sorrowfully:

— Yes, you are right, they are having a “talk”

Just at that time an event took place that made both mother and Shahla dumb struck.

Firstly, the dog rushed towards the gate like an arrow let from a bow and disappeared. Then, Yaqut as if heaved the silent water of the pool like a sword and jumped up. The fish as if was frozen in the air, then it directed to downwards and plunged to the bottom of the pool. That strange act of the fish was repeated for some time.

The girl shrugged her shoulders and watched the floundering fish:

— What is the matter with it? — she asked.


— Maybe it grieves for Tuqay too, — she answered sadly.

It appeared that the fish wasn’t going to be silent. It either jumped up and down, or floundered in the water, or struck itself against the cold walls of the pool. The eagle which was watching the fish spread its wings and flew, as if it drew some circles above the pool; the eagle snatched the silvery fish quickly and screamed taking it to its talon.

Within a moment the eagle disappeared.

Mother and Shahla were astonished; At last Shahla, who had come to herself, said:

— Surely, the eagle will tear the fish…

Mother whose eyes were still staring at the sky, as if speaking to herself:

— No, it can’t be, — she said and then she added. — Because they are close friends.

— If it is thus, why did they leave?

— I am also surprised at them. To tell the truth, recently when Tuqay wasn’t at home, I used to spend my time with them; I used to consider Tuqay to be near by. But they… I wonder, are they disloyal like this? Maybe they left because Tuqay isn’t at home. It is a pity… But I believed them, and accustomed to them. It appears that I am mistaken. Hi, my daughter, now even the people aren’t devoted. Why do we call these “mute” animals to be disloyal. … Shahla, my daughter, maybe anything has happened? … Maybe my son is lost in the storm in the sea? Maybe my son came across a seal? Maybe… Maybe…

Though Shahla heartened mother, it was in vain; soon the tears of the woman were “washing” her faded cheeks. Shahla felt that mother was upset not only because of the reason of Tuqay’s being late in the sea journey but also

“disloyalty” of the “friends “of Tuqay:- the dog, the fish and the eagle; their sudden disappearance made mother upset.

Really, what had happened to the “friends”? Why did they suddenly leave the native hearth?.. Maybe they used the chance of Tuqay’s being late and wanted to leave? Because they had also their own homes; the home of the fish is the sea, the home of the dog is a forest, the home of the eagle is the sky.

Mother was lost in the thoughts. But Shahla still was consoling mother.


A sudden storm caught the old fisherman and Tuqay in the middle of the sea. Within a twinkle the weather got dark. The heavy waves were shaking their light boat like a leaf. After some time inside of the boat there was a small pond of water. Tuqay was holding the paddle with both hands tightly and wanted to direct the boat which was shaking in the waves, towards the seashore. The old fisherman tried to empty the water with an iron mug. But it appeared that the efforts of both of them were useless. Because the waves were pulling the boat into the depth of the sea. From one side the water which had filled the boat was increasing instead of getting decreased.

The salty, severe waves were striking their faces like slap.

As if the hoarse voice of the old fisherman was coming from the other world.

— Tuqay, Tuqay! Hold the paddle tightly!

The begging voice of the old fisherman who was counting his benefit from the next fishing before the storm began and at times shouting at Tuqay and giving him an order (” turn the boat to the left”, “speed up”, “give the handle of the paddle to me when you reach the net”) was becoming weaker little by little like a wounded bird struck by the strong wind. Though Tuqay didn’t like that unkind, cruel and greedy man he felt pity on him. But what could he do? Would the storm demonstrating its power to all around, listen to his begging? The heavy waves were coming towards them as dreadful landslides of the unapproachable mountains giving a roar.

Little by little the groan of the old fisherman wasn’t heard any more.

Now there was seen neither the shore nor the sky. As if the water whirlpool which had brought misfortune together with it, was rotating all around, even the sky, like the huge stone of a mill.

A strong and sudden attack of one of the next heavy waves threw the old fisherman into the raging sea.

Within a moment the old fisherman disappeared; as if there wasn’t such kind of a man in the world.

Though Tuqay lost himself, he reached out his hand towards one side of the boat; the paddle in the hand of the old fisherman had also disappeared together with him. It appeared that there was no hope to escape from that mill of hell.

Really, was all in the past? Before his eyes enlivened instinctively a dreadful view; in the lap of the water an alone boat turned, a paddle, and lifeless dead body which can be feed for the fishes… No, he didn’t want to die. It is true, usually the adults tell that death is inescapable and all the humans who live in this world will pass away on one of the days. But such kind of meaningless death… Tuqay would never think that his short life could be ended so tragically. No, he couldn’t meet such meaningless ending so cold-bloodedly. He wasn’t defeated yet.

All of a sudden among the heavy waves, through the waves raging as dreadful dragons, the kind face of his mother enlivened before his eyes. There was a girl near mother; she was Shahla. Both of them, mother and the girl, were

praying reaching out their hands towards the raging heavy waves. Mother was calling the sea for help.

As if suddenly one unseen hand pulled the boat, which was as if it was going to sink in the whirlpool, and lifted it onto the sea. The boat shook a bit and waved inside of the sea.

Tuqay looked around the sea. All around was surrounded with grey, turbid waters. Neither the shore nor mother was seen.


The fish which was too thirsty, was floundering between the talon of the eagle. Even, at least it would slip, fall on the rocks and would be torn into pieces. For the eagle it was impossible to carry the fish to the far sea. Alongside with the far distance of the sea, Yaqut was out of breath. The eagle felt that its friend was sick of the thirst. During those moments water was life for Yaqut.

After some time hoarse murmuring was heard from below. At last, it was a river! River! It could easily feel the smell of pure water flowing downwards through a valley. See, the eagle began to fly down, above the river! The fish floundered and freed itself out of the talon of the eagle, it went round in the air and threw itself into the mountain river flowing so fast. For some time the eagle went round the head of its friend and then it screamed madly. The fish raised its head through the water and looked up; as if the fish wanted to say good-bye to its friend. Only the God knows, when they will meet again. Seeing the fish, the eagle spread its wings more widely. It meant that Ayqut wanted to fly to the expanse of the height, to the depth of the sky.

The stupefying smell of the water kind of made Yaqut faint. But its pleasure didn’t last much. The fish which had spent most of its life in the great waters, the fish which had firstly tasted the ocean, then the expanse of the sea couldn’t feel itself comfortable in a mountain river.

The fish once, had accidentally fallen into the net of a fisherman. When it was thrown into the pool in the yard of Tuqay, it had felt like this. Firstly, the warm, sweet water of the pool seemed to the fish a bit strange. Then little by little it was accustomed to the smell, taste of the strange water. Now Yaqut believed that it could be escaped. Because just inside of this mountain river it could smell the pleasant taste of the native water coming from far; it was gigantic water. It was salty sea water and Yaqut wanted to plunge into that gigantic, salty, familiar water. Without doubt, this mountain river inside of which the fish was swimming downwards, at last would join to that gigantic and salty sea. The fish was sure about it. That was why the fish was rushing forward passing near the small fishes, tadpoles and frogs. In this mountain river there wasn’t seen such kind of big, strong fish. Though the sharp, strong “wings” of Yaqut at times were caught by the submarine grasses and the roots of trees, it didn’t want to return. Spreading its wings it was beating off all that was in its way, and swimming confidently forward. From far it could feel the pleasant salty water of the native sea.


It was getting dark But the dog had no wish to stop, to rest for a while. It wanted to find even a trace of its friend. The smell of Tuqay was as if in the nose of the dog. If Tuqay was near these places the dog would easily find its friend. But here there was no trace of Tuqay; there wasn’t any smell of Tuqay.

The dog approached the rocky places at the seashore. The heavy and dreadful waves were howling like rabid dogs and were struck against the huge flat stones. There still was no trace of Tuqay. If Tuqay was in those places, the dog could easily define his place, and would run towards his friend, even it would frighten a bit him too. Because Tuqay and Qayut would make jokes specific only to them.

Once there had happened such an event like now; Tuqay who had to return from the journey to the sea, hadn’t come home. At that time mother was worried like now. When it was getting dark, Qayut couldn’t wait any more, it left the yard and went to search for his friend. That night there was a storm in the sea, and it was raining heavily. But the dog had already felt the smell of its friend; its friend was somewhere in the forest! That time the dog rushed into the forest, the thickness of the trees. Well, it appeared that Qayut wasn’t mistaken; in order to escape from a sudden raining Tuqay had hidden himself in the forest guard’s shack. Seeing his friend at the shack Tuqay was firstly surprised, then he choked with joy and embraced the dog that was wet under the rain. After some time they, the dog and Tuqay returned home together. Upon seeing the “friends” return home safe and sound mother was very glad!

But now….It didn’t feel the smell of Tuqay here. Now the dog had no intention of returning home without Tuqay. But mother was waiting for the

“friends” return home together.


The eagle went round above the mountain river flowing downwards for the last time, then it spread its wings widely and flew towards the open sky.

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