Sailing the Blue Aegean

(original photograph property of FBC, Omnia Caelum Studios Valencia)

Si Fueras una Tumba…

(Tumbas licias en el sur de Turquía)

Si fueras una tumba,

de las mismas piedras

te han hecho tu vestido,

como de los huesos del mundo

el hombre ha ido trazando su camino.

Desapareceras un dia, (hombre y tumba),

pero, esas huellas que quedaron en las rocas, en las piedras en los huesos de este mundo,

no las borraran los vientos…

(Ciudad sumergida en el sur de Turquía)

Sino el mar, que al fin logró vencerte.

Ha sido la marea, que regula el tiempo

y que al marinero guía,

pero aunque te haya cubierto,

por encima de las aguas, tu huella sigue viva,

como una sombra que de la roca emerge,

y toma forma viva,

que ha dibujado lo que eras y tenías,

para mostrarle al futuro lo que en el ayer había…

(Escalones que bajan a la ciudad sumergida)

Tus pasos por la tierra,

te elevan, no te hace falta volar,

si hay escalones

por los cuales subes, sin temor a la caída,

y así sales de la fosa, negra, oscura

de los bajos pensamientos,

para unirte con la luz,

y puedas pisar el cielo.

Y aqui abajo, en la tierra interminable,

que es mas o menos nuestro mundo,

las piedras recordarán lo que tu has sido,

y quedará tu aliento entre su grietas de tu tumba,

Tú, hombre, que jamás fuiste vencido…

C.2019 (Derechos Reservados)

(Fotos propiedad de FBC)

Instagram: @Francisco_Bravo_Cabrera

Once You are a River

Xanthos River, Turkey (Antalya)

Once you are a river you can flow…

If you are as water you will never find obstacles and you will always find the level ground and a place to squeeze by…

And no one can hold you in their hands because you flow through their fingers…

Once you are a river you can irrigate the land and bring forth fruit and bring forth grass…

(View from Kalekoy near Antalya, Turkey)

I have always loved to be close to the water. I find that living on the coast gives me a sense of freedom and looking at the sea, or the ocean always gives me peace of mind and a sense of tranquility. No matter how much the waters of the sea look the same, they are always changing, always moving, always offering a new and different panorama and it makes me realise that life is not so complex as we perhaps make it. Yes, there is an enormous complexity in life but that is not our concern as we did not create it, we are the created, we are part of life and therefore need not understand it. Eventually, we will know as we are known…

All we need to do is to simply live life. If you live near the sea and you penetrate the waters with your eyes, with your imagination and with your sense of awe, you will begin to let go of the things that make your life complex and stressful and begin to feel more and think less…

(Marina at Alacati, Turkey)

What can be more joyful and satisfying, as well as a very relaxing way to end a workday, than to sit by the water, with a nice glass of Spanish wine, and listen to the silence of the evening, perhaps only interrupted by the soft sounds of the clanging of the lines that hold the sails as the boats are slightly moved about by the currents of the harbour, and wait for the full moon to make her grand entrance into the stage of the sky…

And once you are a river you can flow into the sea…

And you will be the sea…

I took these pictures on my different trips to Turkey. They are all from the Aegean or the Mediterranean Sea…

I hope you have enjoyed them and if you have, please hit that like button, follow and share and comments are always welcome and encouraged.

I am an artist from Valencia, Spain. If you would like to see more of my artwork (drawings and paintings) please follow me on Instagram @Francisco_Bravo_Cabrera and for my 2019 JaZzArt en Valencia collection of paintings, please visit my online galleries


(All photographs are the property of Francisco Bravo Cabrera, C.2019 Derechos Reservados)

Turkey, Ancient Myra and Modern Antalya

(Amphitheatre of Myra)

In the Antalya province of Turkey, which is in the Mediterranean, is the small Turkish city of Demre. However, its history goes very far back to the Fourth Century before Christ when it was the Greek city of Myra. From then it was transformed to a Roman city…St. Paul changed ships there en route to Rome…then Byzantine, later the Ottoman Greek city of Lycia and the small Turkish town of Kale. The name was changed to Demre in 2005.

(Lycian tombs in Myra)

In 325 A.D., Lycia became a Roman province and Myra became its capital. As the Metropolitan See of the province, it was the home of the bishop and the bishop at that time was none other than Saint Nicholas. He was one of the fathers of the First Council of Nicaea in that same year.

Saint Nicholas of Myra (15 March 270 – 6 December 342), who is known as Nicholas of Bari and, because of the many miracles attributed to him, as Nicholas the Wonderworker. He is the patron saint of sailors, repentant thieves, brewers, children, merchants, archers, and students in Europe. But his lovely habit of secretly giving gifts, has created the idea of the Santa Claus, or Saint Nick.

Church of St. Nicholas, Myra. In the 4th c. A.D., a bishop named Nicholas  (aka Nicholas the Wondermaker, was a native Lycian of Greek descent)  transformed the city of Myra, on the Mediterranean coast of what is now Turkey, into a Christian capital. Until a recent Byzantine chapel was unearthed, the sole remnant of Myra’s Byzantine era was the Church of St. Nicholas that was 1st built in the 5th century A.D. and reconstructed.
(Church of St. Nicholas from the 8th Century)
(Here I am outside the Church of St. Nicholas with statue)
(Tomb of Saint Nicholas-Photo by Sjoehest)

The ancient Greek sarcophagus of marble was used to bury St. Nicholas but his bones were stolen in 1087 by merchants and taken to Bari, to the Basiliaca of St. Nicholas. The Church gained permission in 2007 from the Turkish authorities to celebrate the Divine Liturgy. This was the first time in many centuries.

(Ancient ruins in Myra as you enter the Amphitheatre)
(Ancient ruins in Myra entrance to Amphitheatre in detail)
(Carved masks at the Amphitheatre of Myra)

A famous site in Myra are the rock-cut tombs. Many of them are situated above the theatre and more on the east side in a place called the river necropolis. Some of them have carvings depicting the everyday life of the person buried.

(rock cut tombs above the Theatre)

In 1840, discoverer of the city, Charles Fellows said he found the tombs painted red, blue and yellow.

(Rock cut tombs on the west side of Myra from 4th Century B.C.)

Antalya is the fastest growing city in Turkey. Because of its combination of great beaches and traditional Turkish customs.

(Beach club in Antalya on the Mediterranean Sea)

Antalya was originally named Attaleia (Ἀττάλεια). The King of Pergamon, Attalos founded the city and gave it his name. In Greek today it still bears this name. In Turkish it was first Adalia and then Antalya.

To visit, Antalya is a great summer destination. With more than 300 days a year with sun, and shielded by the Taurus mountains from the northerly winds, the climate is hot, dry and wonderful for water sports, swimming and for exploring the interesting places, such as Myra, which are close by.

I visited there in 2005 and loved the experience. I flew from Istanbul to Bodrum and drove south. The motorways are very good and safe and there are many rest stops, restaurants and accommodations along the way. Another alternative is to arrive to Istanbul and then take a direct flight to Antalya.


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