The Man at the Top of a Mast
Original title : Direğin Tepesinde Bir Adam
Short Story Collections
This is one of the most loved of Zeyyat Selimoğlus books. It comprises ten stories about the sea and the people connected to it. The books title, The Man at the top of a Mast, is the fifth story and as in other stories, it takes place on the ship of Captain Mehmet . The seaman Şükrü has an argument with a boson and feeling that he has been slighted climbs to the top of a mast as a protest. Even when night falls and friends beg him to descend, he refuses. He rejects even the pleas of Captain Mehmet, his sole demand is that the boson should shout aloud, Şükrü is a fine sailer. The boson Eyüb refuses saying, I cant tell a lie. Everybody gathers on deck, curious as to whether Şükrü will jump into the sea or not. The other stories also recount some equally fascinating tales.
Zeyyat Selimoğlu is one of the best of talented writers. Rauf Mutluay
Zeyyat Selimoğlu uses normal people as material. Characters that are at first sight very ordinary are vividly brought to life. Although they have straightforward jobs and seem one dimensional, they are shown to be multifaceted. Describing people of the Black Sea, he shows their hidden aspirations and nobility. Mehmet H. Doğan
When The Man at the top of a Mast won the Sait Faik Story Prize in 1970 I liked the story bearing the title of the book so much that I noted down that everything required to successfully knit a story is here.
From Turkish literature, for those interested in literature concerning the sea along with The Fisherman of Halikarnas and Sait Faik the most interesting material can be found in the stories of Zeyyat Selimoğlu. The Fisherman of Halikarnas concerns distant seas and sponge divers, Sait Faik describes the islands and fishermen while Zeyyat Selimoğlu describes the men of the sea. Doğan Hızlan