24 June 2009

It’s Time to Mow the Flowers - Simin Behbahani


It’s time to mow the flowers,
don’t procrastinate.
Fetch the sickles, come,
don’t spare a single tulip in the fields.
The meadows are in bloom:
who has ever seen such insolence?
The grass is growing again:
step nowhere else but on its head.
Blossoms are opening on every branch,
exposing the happiness in their hearts:
such colorful exhibitions must be stopped.
Bring your scalpels to the meadow
to cut out the eyes of flowers.
So that none may see or desire,
let not a seeing eye remain.
I fear the narcissus is spreading its corruption:
stop its displays in a golden bowl
on a six-sided tray.
What is the use of your ax,
if not to chop down the elm tree?
In the maple’s branches
allow not a single bird a moment’s rest.
My poems and the wild mint
bear messages and perfumes.
Don’t let them create a riot with their wild singing.
My heart is greener than green,
flowers sprout from the mud and water of my being.
Don’t let me stand, if you are the enemies of Spring.

--Translated by Farzaneh Milani and Kaveh Safa

From Logos Journal

4 comments:

Paul said...

excellent poem. Thank you for opening my eyes to some poetry from Iran

Sean Jeating said...

Perfectly picked, Jams!

Renegade Eye said...

Excellent work.

I have up my post about Chavez.

Today in the day, I was with Minnesota Iranians protesting the government. In the evening I heard a pro-Iranian government professor speak. JP who writes for my blog, spoke in the Q and A, and got applause.

For the left this is a pivotal issue. My group believes this is the start of a revolution. Other socialist groups don't understand what is happening.

You and I, have been following this for quite awhile. I guess it's easy to miss the boat on this.

jams o donnell said...

you're welcome Paul. I often post Iranian poetry, particularly teh work of Forough Farrokhzad, a woman who was taken from the world far too early

It did seem so apt Sean

I agree Ren it is a pivotal event. I still have no idea how things will pan out but Khamenei nd Ahmadinejad almost certainly have no credibility among a huge section of Iran's population, and not just the so called "elite"

As for fellow leftists, the response of many has been a disgrace in my view. It throws their blinkered anti americanism into sharp relief