Poet and writer (b. 1914, Trabzon - d. 18 April 1988, İstanbul). He was the son of the poet and linguist Samih Rıfat, who was also the governor of Trabzon. He attended Ankara High School for Boys (1932) and graduated from Ankara University, Faculty of Law (1936). He studied for three years at the University of Paris, Faculty of Political Sciences aided by the Ministry of Finance; however, he did not have the opportunity to complete his studies.
He worked at the General Directorate of Press and Publishing (1943).
He worked as a legal practitioner in Ankara and İstanbul. He retired when he was still a legal adviser at Turkish State Railways, İstanbul Directorate Head Office (1961-73).
His first poems were published in the review Varlık (1936-44), and he came to be known for his poems published in the reviews Aile (1947), Yaprak (1949-50) and Yeditepe (1951-57).
He became one of the pioneers of the movement called “New Poetry”, or “Strange”, with his poems published in the book Garip (Strange), which he published in collaboration with Orhan Veli Kanık and Melih Cevdet Anday in 1941.
He focused on social issues in his poems, in which he employed the features of folk poetry and thus reinvented himself. He followed the vogue of the surrealistic understanding of poetry like the other poets of the Second New movement.
Besides poetry, he wrote plays and translated works from French. He collected the Yeditepe Poetry Prize in 1955 with Karga ile Tilki (The Crow and the Fox) and the Turkish Language Association Poetry Award in 1970 with his book Şiirler (Poems).
His play Yağmur Sıkıntısı (Oppressive Air) was selected as the Best Play of the Year by the Ankara Art Lovers Association and won the achievement award at the Turkish Radio and Television Art Awards Contest in 1970.
He also won the Sedat Simavi Foundation Award in 1980 with his book Bir Cigara İçimi (Smoking a Cigarette), the Madarali Novel Award in 1981 with Danaburnu (Calf Nose) and the Necatigil Poetry Award in 1984 with Dilsiz ve Çıplak (Mute and Naked). All his works were published by Adam Publications with the title Bütün Şiirleri (All Poems).
POETRY: Garip (Strange, in collaboration with Orhan Veli and Melih Cevdet, 1941), Güzelleme (Folk Song of Praise, 1945), Yaşayıp Ölmek, Aşk ve Avarelik Üzerine Şiirler (Poems on Living and Dying, Love and Idleness, 1946), Aşağı Yukarı (More or Less, 1952), Karga ile Tilki (The Crow and the Fox, 1954), Perçemli Sokak (Perçemli Street, 1956), Aşk Merdiveni (Love Stairs, 1958), İkilik (Double; second edition of Aşağı Yukarı – More or Less and Karga ile Tilki – The Crow and the Fox, 1963), Elleri Var Özgürlüğün (Freedom Has Hands, 1966), Şiirler (Poems, 1969), Yeni Şiirler (New Poems, 1973), Çobanıl Şiirler (Shepherd-like Poems, 1976), Bir Cigara İçimi (Smoking a Cigarette, 1979), Elifli (Cherry, 1980), Denize Doğru Konuşma (Speech Toward the Sea, 1982), Dilsiz ve Çıplak (Mute and Naked, 1984), Koca Bir Yaz (A Whole Summer, 1987), Bütün Şiirleri (All Poems, 1991).
PLAY: Kadınlar Arasında (Among Women, staged in 1948, published in 1966), Oyun İçinde Oyun (Play in a Play, 1949 -50), Bir Takım İnsanlar (Some People, staged in 1960, published in 1961), Atlar ve Filler (Horses and Elephants, 1962), Çil Horoz (Speckled Rooster, 1964), Zabit Fatma'nın Kuzusu (Lamb of the Officer Fatma, 1965), Yağmur Sıkıntısı (Opressive Air, 1969 / 70, five plays published in one, 1988), Dirlik Düzenlik (Peace and Quiet, 1975).
NOVEL: Bir Kadının Penceresinden (Through a Woman’s Window, 1976), Danaburnu (Calf Nose, 1980), Bay Lear (Mr. Lear, 1982).
Besides these, he did translations about Greek anthlogy and translations from Latin poets.