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The epic of the Persian woman

Parvin Bavafa
Translated by Dr. Parhizkar
April 18, 2006

Oh man,
...................... Don't bother, don't bother again
........... Since you've never felt the pain
Don't call me just a woman, don't
........... That is my every command
I shed my blood to free my homeland

Neither am I Laily of Majnoon, nor Shirin of Farhad
But Parvin, the shining star of art
But Forough, the brightness of poetry in Iran

Neither am I Poorandokht, nor Azarmidokht
Nor Atussa, nor Pantea
But Artimis, navy commander of Iran
In the war Salamis, in Ionia

Without the mother how could you be?
Now you keep battling a woman like me
Without me how could history know
A warior Kaveh or Arash and his bow?
Without me how could there be
The master of Persian language Ferdowsi?

As a mother on the pedestal I stand
A carpet from heaven my feet demand
Because the trace of my feet will run
All over the Red, White, Green image of Iran

How is it that you shut me up today?
Why do you chain me, in the name of God today?

This trend of thought my culture never knew
This is absurd, fabricated and very new

Why do you cover my face?
You old fashioned culprit, trying to do me disgrace
My bare face must not have scared you
My uncovered hair must not have dared you
But, just the freedom that flows all over me
Frightened you to the bone and makes you flee

Oh man, don't bother, don't bother, don't
Go and set up this trap for another small bird
As the eagle's nest is always beyond your reach.


Thanks to Nilufar H.

letters section
To Parvin Bavafa


Book of the day

Stories From Iran
A Chicago Anthology 1921-1991
edited by Heshmat Moayyad




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