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Seda: Voices of Iran

Manouchehr Atashi

Manouchehr Atashi is a rare poet who has created a special language and diction in modern poetry. Born in the warm southern coastal region and with vivid image of the desert environment and tribal life, his poems are the poems of the fighting horsemen. He combines the coloring of sincere experience with various episodes, which gives a charming tincture to his poems. 

After secondary school education in Bushir, Atashi received his BS degree in English literature in Tehran.  His poetry is the poetry of the revolting warrior of the humiliated southern tribesman. He takes his work seriously and although attached to his native birthplace his poems are universal scope. In his later works Atashi has relaxed his rhythm and has moved toward direct expression of emotion.

The Lay of Regret

One morning 
- One true morning -
If the sun rises according to your wishes;

A frame of mountain and valley,
A frame of window, if the bird had reaches you -

A wide plain, wet tulips!
A laughing sepal,
A sigh of contentment and peace 
- O you melancholy and persistent one -
O living stone, an embodiment of patience! -
A defeated life would have been your portion.


We Didn’t Know

Had we advanced a bit further
Our path would have perhaps led to the sea,
Our sleep would have perhaps turned into dream.

Had we paddled more
Perhaps we would have an agreeable wind,
If we didn't return to the coast,
The water would perhaps have sucked our corpses into the depth.

We were neither a rushing river,
To gallop over, obstacles, sharp ends, plains to... the sea,
Neither were we a moat to serve as watering trough for the mangy wolf...
Nor a mangy wolf which is after its carnal desires,
To submit ..... to the secret moment of a cursed death undisturbed.

We didn't who called us, when and why? whom we called 
and why we joined the path
Or why we were delayed.
We didn't know who we were and when we existed,
And who has tied this dog inside ourselves to the chain of our vein,
And when.

We don't know who we were and who we are,
Whether our pain was from a wound inflected by a heavenly stone
Or we ourselves are a stinking wound in the body of existence...

We didn't know.

Translations by M. Alexandrian



Shaghayegh va Pol in Persian


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