9 - KOJOJASH’S PURSUIT OF SUR E«KI

To the hostile EÁki
The hunter came up.
Her lame leg had gotten better,
EÁki, the real kayberen,
Got up quickly from her place, they say,
The vowed hunter came, she said,
EÁki set out straight, they say.
Gathering his energy and strength,
Not wanting to stay behind EÁki,
Kojojash chased after her, they say.
Now he followed her yellow trace,
Stubbornly chased after her.
Now he followed her pale trace,
Keenly chased after her.
In daytime and nighttime
Through the white glaciers and cliffs,
He chased her non-stop.
Through the high cliffs,
Snow capped mountains,
Cliff where kayberens live,
White wind and breeze,
Hills after hills,
Through places no humans walked,
He walked straight and through rivers,
Through slippery glaciers with no way out,
Kojojash, who hadn’t sired any child,
Goes chasing all over these places.
Through the vast valleys and
Cool and green places with streaming rivers,
Over the Kashkar mountains
People heard about that
The hunter is chasing EÁki.
Wandering in the Kashkar mountains,
Wiping his sweat off his forehead,
This poor soul was, indeed,
Born into a tragic day.
He crossed fast flowing rivers,
Passed over high mountains,
Went round the Kashkar mountains,
Passed near the Karakol,
I will catch you anyway, he said,
The hunter didn’t want to give up.
“At the very end, Sur EÁki,
You won’t get away from me,
I’ll reach my goal, he said,
I’ll catch you for sure,” he said.
Through the Ala-Too mountains,
He chased her in circle, they say.
In order to try to catch her,
Like a newly racing stallion,
He charged recklessly (without pitying his soul)
On the edges and on the slopes,
Of «elek and «arïm,
The two go chasing each other,
There is no one besides them.
EÁki became weaker by each day,
The brave Kojojash grew stronger,
Determined to catch her.
The red fields of KoÁkor
And all of its mountains
The hunter did not miss.
In At-Bashï and Narïn
He chased after EÁki
With no one next ti him.
“Ehcki, the kayberen is my quarry,
Oh, God give me strength,
My Áokoys[1] got worn out.
At the end, Sur EÁki
Will be my sworn prey,
For I spent most of my life,
Chasing after EÁki.
I chased her,
I did not aim any place
To have a rest and sleep.”
The face of Kojojash
Got yellow and hard like copper,
He didn’t lose his strength, however,
He grew strong, looked resilient,
The Ak barang with its six carvings,
Gleamed on his right shoulder,
His kise clattered on his waist.
Like a mature stallion,
The hunter walked eagerly [Talpinip mergen sharpildap]
His Áarïks on his feet wore out,
His walking stick looked straight in his hands [tayagi koldo tirelip]
The soil of the ground where the hunter had stepped
Resembled a piled up snow  [Turpagi karday kurolup].
In Ketmen-Töbö and vast Alay,
The hunter traveled very far,
Not able to catch his enemy.
He went through cliffs no man can pass,
Wet lands on which no swans land,
Through pastures with many rocks,
Through places with many pine trees,
And through valleys and ravines.
“How can I ever escape
From this chasing hunter
Who killed off my offspring?!"
Loosing her energy and walking shakily [kaljaktap]
Sur EÁki was looking sad.
The hunter had great hope
To catch and kill her,
So he chased EÁki very fast.
Through the forest with badal and pine trees,
Through swamps with no mountains and rocks,
Through rocky ravines with eternal snow,
During his struggle with EÁki
He vowed to award gold as big as a head [? Antina altin bash saygan].
Through thick forest and hills,
He went running very fast
In Sarï-Üngkür and Aksay.
Each day the hunter grew stronger,
By gaining strength and looking fresh.
There are fast running rivers
And ulars singing loudly.
Yellow springs stream down on küngöy [?]
He is chasing EÁki,
Those who saw them were confused.
Through the red kïyas and blue peaks,
The hunter chased her hill after hill
Through black kïyas and golden hills,
With slopes full of minerals like gold,
The brave man got closer to EÁki 
Than before.
Even their distance was very close
Even when the deer stood in a group on a pass
Even if she appeared in front of him
The hunter didn’t shoot her among her herd.
He had held a strong grudge aganist her
So he stubbornly chased EÁki.
They went through rich lands like Shamshïkal and Ak-Tüz [kenderden],
Through the never ending Ala-Too
With various beautiful places.
EÁki was loosing her hope
She thought she would be killed by the hunter at the end.
Even if he ran day and night
In Mazar-Say and Kïzïl-«ap,
The hunter looked happy and hopeful.
He was sure to reach EÁki
And catch her by hand.
He wished to cut off her head and throw it away,
And skin her hide with a knife.
Not a single mountain was left where the hunter didn’t go
The brave hunter, Kojojash,
Never tired and lost his vigor.
“I grew up in a land,
With wide fields and rich in minerals.
If I reach and catch EÁki
I won’t even give her liver to a crow.
Suusamïr, the upper end of Talas
And many hills remained behind me.
“Saying that you are the real kayberen,
You, EÁki Sur are making me pursue you.”
He chased her from one ravine to another,
Wasn’t able to catch her there,
“In the whole Ala-Too mountain range
I pursued you non-stop,” he said,
“I did not hesitate to cross
Fast running rivers,” he said.
"You made my wife a widow,
You made (my father) Karïpbay mourn,
You made my red cheeks turn pale.
My soles got chipped [scuffed],
Due to this sudden ordeal.
My relatives suffered all,
My wife wore a black cloth [=mourning clothes].
I didn’t even notice how
My dear life and youth passed by
In fighting against this EÁki.
I brought this suffering on my own head
For I’m still stubbornly pursuing EÁki.
Oh, will my wish to catch (EÁki)
Ever be fulfilled?!
When will I ever see Zulayka
And be happy and laugh with her?!
I’ve spent the gems of youth
By being in the wilderness.
My heart has suffered a lot
By using a gun at early age.
Most of my life has gone now,
Now I wish for a late death!”
In Kapka-Tash and Kök-Moynok,
In his mind, Kojojash
Felt sad thinking a lot of things:
“Including «at-Karagay and Iyri-Köl,
I went through many places of Talas.
Many people have seen me,
«eÁens[2] and singers like nightingales.
I saw many gorgeous rivers
Flowing fast.”
By chasing EÁki through these places,
Kojojash brought EÁki
To Taar-Kap and Kököm island.
“By passing through fields and
Mangkabek and Korum
I saw many beautiful places.
I ask from you Sur EÁki,
When will I aim my gun [at you]
Will I get rid of this pain
By getting out of this pledged game?
Will I ever return alive
And see my few Kïtay people?
I lost most of my youth
By running after you in this world,
Is this the fate [You] assigned to me?
My beloved Zulayka,
I left behind in despair.
Not able to catch EÁki,
My dear precious head,
Will you remain behind
Being food for crows and vultures?”
All over Ala-Too
He chased her now,
Determined to catch EÁki
He made another attempt.
Not leaving a single mountain
The hunter stubbornly pursued her.
At the end, Kojojash
Through «ong-Koshoy of upper Talas,
Balïktï and ÜÁ-«ürök,
"Because of one EÁki
I suffered tremendously, he said,
Kojojash chased her through
Ala-Bel, Ötmök, Muz-Tör,
Jeldi-Suu, Jargart, Sandïk,
For he had a sworn oath,
He came chasing down to Talas.
In Koshoy of upper Talas
By running fast he suffered,
The brave hunter, Kojojash
Determined to catch EÁki,
Came down chasing her.
To the ravine [beles] shaped like a saddle,
Now EÁki ran down [engkeyip EÁki kachti emi]
She passed through all
The black peak [shalpildak])
When she looked back,
The hunter got close to her,
EÁki became desperate.
In the yellow fields of Jelkek,
Determined to reach and catch her,
Kojojash is still chasing her
Not remaining behind.
He came chasing down EÁki
To the Kuyruk-UlaÁ island.
EÁki had no strength left
To go up to the high mountain.
Kojojash intended to catch her
When she comes more down
To the lowland with no rocks.
Sur EÁki went the other way,
Running on the slopes towards
«ong-«ïÁkan and Korum.
She ran through the slopes of
Kalba, MïkaÁï and Iyri-Suu.
Running away from the Kalba slopes
She came down into the Besh-Tash ravine.
He’d been chasing her non-stop,
Not leaving Echi alone.
Sur EÁki ran in despair
To many rivers and ravines.
Through the slopes of Besh-Tash,
Sur EÁki came down running
To Taldï-Bulak and Kaynar.
No place was left where she hadn’t gone,
She came across many places,
Now she came down to the field
From Taldï-Bulak and Kaynar.
One is hunter and the other is EÁki,
Both experienced hardships.
Now she came running through the shores of
Jerge-Tal and Kara-Oy.
Kayberen EÁki now saw
Keng-Kol in front of her,
Crossing quickly the Talas river,
She ran to the other side.
The “entrance” of Keng-Kol
Was a vast wetland, she learned.
At the time when they’re there
  It was springtime everywhere.
She ran towards Keng-Kol
It had many small rocks [mayda chibir tash])
The brave man named Manas’s
Tomb stood shining because
The tomb's clay was plated with gold
It was the hero Manas’ sign.
His tomb was built to face the sun.
Not a mountain was left where she hadn’t gone
Among the mountains seen there.
“Kojojash doesn’t stop chasing me,
God, you put me in misery.
Passing through the edge of Bor-Töbö,
Echi went up to the ravine
Of Sarï-Bulak and Ters-Kol.
She went to Obo and «aÁïke
Places of the mountain Orto-Özön.
Bashkï-Suu and Barkïrak have
Beautiful and shiny rocks,
And rivers which flow fast [sharkirap].
Its arkars mated on the passes,
Even when he came across them,
Kojojash never looked at them.
Kök-Dönön, famous for its pigeons,
Never seen without snow on its peaks.
Through the slopes of Makmal-Töö
She came to Korgon-Tash and Nïldï.
The exhausted Sur EÁki,
Jumped into the ravine
Letting her body fall in the field.
Through the two rivers of Sar-Bulak
Sur EÁki came running
With no strength and looking weak.
With his sweat dripping down
Kojojash came after her
Running quite desperately [kara janin kamchilap]
Kök-tash and EÁkili
Were places with many goats.
Sur EÁki just joined
The goats lying on the hill.
The hunter didn’t loose sight of EÁki
Because he has sharp eyes.
Every problem can be solved
For he is smart and intelligent.
There is Kïzïl-«ap in Nïldï,
He kept chasing her down
Trying to catch her in the valley,
The hunter got closer and closer.
His Ak barang with six carveings
Shined on his right shoulder.
From the middle of the river
Geese and ducks fly splashing the water.
Fruit trees were in blossom
No such a thing like rich and poor
Following EÁki day and night
Kojojash had been in pain
For he had vowed to EÁki.
The forest was rich in resources,
He thought he could catch her
In the black [kashat] kemer.
The vast Talas with kaykalagan mountains
Was the homeland of Manas
Who made a jele[3] and tied foals onto it,
Whose Áïbïr was full of animals,
Whose garden full of singing birds.
When the [ala shalbirt] snow had melted away
And when spring had arrived
Inside the fortress built by Tagaymat,
Chasing EÁki, he brought her
To the place he intended to catch her.
By this time she was in good shape
For her takïm muscles got strong.
The hunter had planned to catch her
When she would come to the black kashat
Inside the Tagaymat’s fortress.
Each day Kojojash became stronger,
He now came down to the valley
Of his targeted place Talas . . .


Notes:
1. Leather sock-like shoes.
2. «eÁen is a wise and eloquent person.
3. Jele is a long rope attached to the ground to tie the foals while their mothers are being milked.

© 2004 Elmira KŲÁŁmkulkÔzÔ