The tales in this book, I heard from my mother. My mother heard them from a storyteller nearly sixty years ago. It seems my grandfather never thought twice about hiring a storyteller to warm the cockles of his little girls heart. She listened to many stories, though she couldnt always recall them, she passed many along to me, as well, though I couldnt recall them all either. To tell the truth, I had long since forgotten even the stories in this book. Years later, I returned to my fathers house in Antep and my mother just so, happened to tell them again to me. I was captivated by the beauty of the stories laid before me. To her credit, my mother was a superb storyteller, but it wasnt just my mothers eloquence that affected me. The secret to the beauty of these stories lays hidden in their striking literary form and the profound messages in their content. The basic nature of humankind so matter-offactiy unfolded in front of ones eyes, it was impossible not to admire these narratives.
Hearing the stories again, it dawned on me that it was imperative they be written down. I was pushed to this conclusion by the fear that in this contemporary World, we are domineered by visual narration, these tales which rely on the spoken word will one day be lost. So I set about putting them on paper, fine-tuning and embellishing in places to be sure, but without tampering with the essence of the stories.
I suppose the same adventure has befallen these tales as all other oral retellings. Each storyteller and listener in turn enhances the story, or impairs it for that matter, by adding a little of themselves. With that, I feel compelled to remark on the great enthusiasm with which I set to writing down these stories, enriched by the dream world of my mother. Who is such an extraordinary storyteller.
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