Nuriye Gulmen: A letter from prison – 100th day of the Indefinite Hunger Strike

Our fight for bread and honor has started 220 days ago. We had begun saying “It is our turn to write new stories”. Not to get those stories written in glamourous volumes of books, or in enormous books with sententious words; but to leave a mark in the muddy waters of the laborer’s neighborhoods, in school desks, in the voice of the laborers who has been taken off their jobs, in the breath of millions of people in hunger, and in the consciousness of commons who look for a glimpse of light in darkness… We began our road to augment this voice and eventually turn it into stories of justice.

Our road crossed hunger 100 days ago. One night, we turned hunger into a weapon against those who, in one night left us without bread, who tried to discipline us with hunger. We turned it -hunger- into a silent scream of defending our bread and honor, and there began our hunger strike.

Those who hasn’t taken their share from truth, those who are the dissidents of bread and honor, has imprisoned us to smother our righteous voice. Yet, we do continue to give our fight for bread in F-type (High Security) lockdown cells, in between concrete, iron bars and walls for 24 days. We eke out our hunger with the beauties and the bitterness of the history of the humanity, the sanctity of bread, and the honor of not giving in to the persecutions.

Allies to our resistance, friends to our hunger, and sisters/ brothers to our hearts; people of Turkey and all the people of the world;

For 100 days, our bodies have been battling a fight; which has death at one side, life at the other… We set our hearts into life and into the honor of the labor. That’s why we hold onto hope and light, and sometimes to the simile of a child, to the beauty of the blossom, to the greeting coming from a friend, to the news coming from you, to our hearts beating together… and on top of all we hold onto our rightfulness and hunger.

You hold onto those as well. If a little flame of hopelessness comes by, think about the seeds of hope sprouting with hunger in isolation cells. Knead your love with labor, carry the voice of hunger anywhere you go. Put your fear onto the scale of hunger and honor.

Do not forget, that this battle ongoing in my body is nothing else but the sight of the most long-standing battle of the humanity, it is the look of the ‘fight for bread’ in this country in today’s world. And one’s wish to earn her bread with her honor is a right as natural, as unquestionable, and as unhindered as a firstborn’s craving for breastmilk.

You, too, stick your heart and soul into the most honorable fight of humanity. Because life, honor, humanity, is right there, right in the middle of that fight.

We will dance the halay in glory. We will have crowns entwisted with daisies on our heads, red handkerchiefs in our hands, with triumph songs pouring down from our lips, and cackles of children on our faces.

Until then, take good care of your hope.
Resistance will win! We will win!
Long live our Hunger Strike Resistance!
Long live the struggle of the public laborers for bread and honor!

I hug you, with the most resistant side of me, with the 100 days of hunger of mine!

With love and commitment,
Nuriye

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