Sherko Bekas

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Jump to navigation Jump to search

Sherko Bekas
Sherko Bekas (left) and Mazhar Khaleqi
Sherko Bekas (left) and Mazhar Khaleqi
BornSherko Bekas
(1940-05-02)2 May 1940
Sulaimaniyah, Iraqi Kurdistan
Died4 August 2013(2013-08-04) (aged 73)
Stockholm, Sweden
OccupationPoet, painter, writer, philosopher
GenrePoetry, parable, short story

Sherko Bekas (Kurdish: Şêrko Bêkes‎) (2 May 1940 – 4 August 2013), was a Kurdish poet.[1] He was born on 2 May 1940 in Sulaymaniyah in Iraqi Kurdistan as a son of the Kurdish poet Fayak Bekas.[2]


Bekas joined the Kurdish liberation movement in 1965 and worked in the movement's radio station (the Voice of Kurdistan). He left his homeland because of political pressure from the Iraqi regime in 1986. From 1987 to 1992, he lived in exile in Sweden. In 1992, he returned to Iraqi Kurdistan.

He died of cancer in Stockholm, Sweden on 4 August 2013.

Early years[edit]

Bekas was born in Iraqi Kurdistan. His father, Fayaq, was also a poet. Bekas published his first book when he was 17.

Literary works[edit]

In 1971, Bekas introduced the "Rûwange" (vision) element into Kurdish poetry; this was a break from the strict traditional rules of poetry, such as rhyme. The poems translated in "The Secret Diary of a Rose" by Reingard and Shirwan Mirza, with Renate Saljoghi, are examples of this style. For the first time, he introduced the "poster poem" (a term originating from sculpture and painting) in 1975 into the Kurdish poetry.

Bekas' works have been translated into Arabic, Swedish, Danish, Dutch, Italian, French and English. In 1987, he was awarded the "Tucholsky scholarship" of the Pen club in Stockholm and in the same year he was awarded the freedom prize of the city of Florence.

A two-volume collection of his poetry works has been published in Kurdish under the title "Sherko Bekas' Diwan" in Sweden. These two 1000-page volumes contain his poetic works in their entirety. He has read his poems in Sweden, Denmark, Norway, Germany, Switzerland, Austria, United Kingdom, Russia, and Italy, where he was named honorary citizen of Milan. He visited United States in 1990.


  • Tirîfey Helbest, Salman al-Azami Publishers, Iraq, 1968.
  • Kawey Asinger: Dastanêkî honrawayî sar shanoye le no tabloda, Saydiyan Publishers, Mahabad, Iran, 1971.
  • Marâyâ saghírah, illustrerad by Fuad Ali, 125 pp., Al-ahâli Publishers, Damascus, Syria, 1988.
  • Dall : çîrokî şê'r, Poem, 44 pp., Apec Publishers, Sweden, 1989. ISBN 91-87730-03-0
  • Derbendî Pepûle: A Long Poem, 228 pp., Apec Publishers, Sweden, 1991.
  • Små speglar: dikter 1978–1989. – Norsborg : Publ. House of Kurdistan, 1989. – 108 s. – ISBN 91-87096-05-6
  • Les petits miroirs : poèmes, Translation of his poems in French, by Kamal Maarof, Preface by Guillevic, 95 pp., L'Harmattan Publishers, Paris, 1995. ISBN 2-7384-2059-1
  • Dîwanî Şêrko Bêkes, Collection of Poems, vol. I, 992 pp., Sara Publishers, Stockholm, 1990.
  • Dîwanî Şêrko Bêkes, Collection of Poems, vol. II, 843 pp., Sara Publishers, Stockholm, 1992.
  • Dîwanî Şêrko Bêkes, Collection of Poems, vol. III, 551 pp., Apec Publishers, Stockholm, 1995. ISBN 91-87730-74-X
  • Gulbijêrek ji helbestên (Selected Poems), 110 pp., Apec Publishers, 1991. ISBN 91-87730-28-6
  • Geheimnisse der Nacht pflücken : Gedichte / aus dem Kurdischen von Reingard und Shirwan Mirza und Renate Saljoghi, 95 pp., Unionsverlag Publishers, Zürich, 1993. ISBN 3-293-00187-4
  • Mêrgî zam-, mêrgî hetaw, 182 pp., Kurdistans folkförb., Stockholm, 1996. ISBN 91-972467-2-7
  • Xaç û mar û roj-jimêrî şa'êrê, A poetic novel, 374 pp., Apec Publishers, Stockholm, 1997. ISBN 91-89014-20-0
  • The secret diary of a rose: a journey through poetic Kurdistan, Translated into English by Reingard and Shirwan Mirza ; revised by Luise von Flotow, Ashti Bibani, 1997.
  • Bonname : Şê'r. Binkey Edeb û Rûnakbîrî Gelawêj, Sulaimaniya, Iraqi Kurdistan 1998.
  • Çirakanî ser helemût : pexşan, Sardam Publishers, Iraqi Kurdistan, 1999.
  • Piyawî la-darsew : Şê'r. Sulaimaniya, Iraqi Kurdistan, 2000.
  • Qesîdey Rengdan, Xak Publishing Center, Sulaimaniya, Iraqi Kurdistan, 2001.
  • Ezmûn: 1985–2000, Edited by Yasin Umar, Sardam Publishers, Sulaimaniya, Iraqi Kurdistan, 2001.
  • Jîn û Baran, Poem. Silêmanî Library, 2001.
  • Ji nav Şêrên min. Avesta Publishers, Istanbul, Turkey, 2001. ISBN 975-7112-31-3.
  • Xom ew wextey balindem!, 237 pp., Sardam Publishers, Sulaimaniya, Iraqi Kurdistan, 2002.
  • Kukuxîtya bizêweke, Children's poetry, Sardam Publishers, Sulaimaniya, 2003.


Here is one of his poems:

In the treasure of this world

From the King’s pearl ornamented trousers

To the Sultan’s gold woven garment

Or the emerald adorned court shoes of the queens

None of them did not become the symbol of love

And did not enter the museum of the people’s heart

Like Che Guevara’s casket hat

And Mandela’s simple garment

And Gandhi’s shoes


  1. ^ "RAHA Poetry, Sherko Bekes, Kurdistan, Iraq". 1 September 2003. Archived from the original on 25 July 2013. Retrieved 5 August 2013.
  2. ^ "ایسنا – شیرکو بی‌کس درگذشت". Retrieved 5 August 2013.

External links[edit]