The Pen

The story happened near to Kuu Street in Karlova, Tartu. Image credit: Inga Külmoja

So, I was sitting in front of this building, smoking, in Karlova, and there was this old guy approaching me, presumably drunk, humming while he walked.

As he reached me, he stopped in front of me and started saying a few things in Estonian. I let him know that I did not speak any Estonian, to which he changed to English immediately. He said that he had tobacco, papers and everything, but he needed a lighter.

Of course, mate, I told him. And as he started looking for some tobacco in his bag, he dropped his pen. I told him, mate, you dropped your pen.

– It’s my weapon, he said to my surprise. I’m a poet.

I had to say something. Really? I told him, that’s really cool.

– Everybody is a poet, he claimed this time.

Then he lit his cigarette, we exchanged good wishes, and he left.

Boy, Tartu is beautiful.

Murat Can Yüksel is a master’s student of semiotics at the University of Tartu. This story won fifth place in the international students’ contest.

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