Your wishes are granted
Goethe once said that what one wishes for in one's youth, one has in abundance
in old age. My greatest love took this to mean that the earlier in life one made
a wish, the greater the chance that it would be fulfilled. For according to the logic
of Goethe's claim, the further a wish reaches out in time, the greater the hopes
for its fulfillment.
"It is experience that accompanies one to the far reaches of time,"
such were the words of wisdom Walt whispered in my ear one solemn dusk as we stood
outside watching the stars. I suppose that what he meant by that weighty pearl was
that a wish fulfilled is the crowning of experience.
When in the traditions of old, distance in space takes the place of distance
in time, the shooting star becomes the symbol of a fulfilled wish. And so, on this
day of days, that star that plunged into the infinite distance of the space separating
you from the one (thing) you desire, is the star that flashed me in a brilliance
that forced me to land and, to face you once again...
Let me intone these miraculous words of glad tiding as I stand bejeweled and
bemused before you: "Your wishes are granted!"
You're in desperate need of distractions this month, waiting, wanting, hoping,
wishing...What can Madame Bayaz do but to hold your hand and tell you that we've
all done all that we could and that your dreams are now firmly propped up on that
shooting star which is moments away from bursting into its most luminous brilliance
somewhere out there in the distance. Better then to ponder the unfulfilled wishes
of others and to do all that is in your own power to make them come true. In other
words, be their shooting star Be Baran's Lateef and anticipate every hurdle on the
path to her well being and happiness. OK, so you don't get it Check out this site:
http://www.yazda11.com/baran/index.html You'll figure it out.
Madame Bayaz can see those flailing hands and the kicking feet that have inhabited
your body for seven months now. You're wishing it were over. Wishing you'd go back
to being yourself. Only more responsible. Only smarter. Only more productive. Less
cautious. More settled. Richer. Whatever! The repetitiveness of these rote desires
stands in the way of their fulfillment. That much, I can tell you off the bat. Dream
instead for things you have no control over this month. Dream that your friend's
beloved in Tehran can swim in a pool when summer comes. That the stairs become easier,
the tasks lighter for your friend's young aunt. Make a wish for the young boy just
finishing his degree at Azad University. Dream for him that his sense of duty is
lifted and that he finds himself moving Westward where his dreams come alive. Preoccupy
yourself with the dreams of others; others you may never know. It will be that every
wish you never even dreamed of will come true. Just trust me!
A wish fulfilled is a wish that has traveled a seemingly endless distance in time
and space. And so, my dear Gemini, Madame Bayaz' wish, which is a wish held in a
heart that is always at a distance from you temporally and spatially, is the wish
that has the greatest likelihood of being fulfilled. The wish, rising from this mossy
ground that I call my heart, plunges you in my mind's eye in a sea of well being.
From it, you emerge as if from a rainstorm in July: joyous, productive, and above
all healthy, strumming your sitar to the beat of a nearby tombak.
Behind the boastful self assertiveness you project publicly, the one that demands
dinner NOW when the poor waiter obviously has twenty five other tables equally anxious
for his attention, or the one that allows you to think that you can downhill ski
even on a slope covered in ice.Behind that boastful self assertiveness, is a quiet,
gentler, shy self that is riddled with self-doubt even before a public invitation
to stand up and dance with the restaurant's belly-dancer and her silk cloth. Perhaps
it is the latter view of your self that is reflected in the awkward movement of your
hips as you dance along? Or in your inability to gracefully tuck the dollar bill
in her waist? Yes, the Madame thinks she may be right in this, and so, my dear Cancer,
perhaps it is time that you wish again. Wish this time that the image which you project
outwardly, traverses the distance between the public you and the private one and
then that it collapses the two altogether. Indeed, this month you can be who you've
always made yourself out to be. Make a wish now for it is already granted.
There are years that go by and you're just not in the know. There are times that
the hot ticket to the biggest Iranian cultural event in your town is sold out. And
you know, though few would dare divulge it, that if you don't go to it, the end of
your life will be near. Madame Bayaz proclaims these words of wisdom in response
to this realization: "When boredom is the greatest threat to a life in a world
run by attention deficit disorder, chant your wish out to the universe. Then put
a call in to one person on each continent. Someone will know someone in your little
town, and that someone will grant you the wish that will save you from the ultimate
act of self-destruction. You'll get your ticket yet!" Your life's dedication
to culture is the promise of a wish granted.
A year, maybe two, has played its part in shattering the corrupt image of a universe
you held onto as if it were real. I know that in the rear view mirror, or the handheld
one you use to check your teeth in after a meal, the past casts an eerie reflection
on the future before you. Truth be told, everyone, even Madame Bayaz, has had a share
in that horror, but only you dared to turn and look it in the face and then stare
it down. By my clock, the time is here to drop the mirror so that it splinters into
a thousand bits and to watch your scars heal beyond the scabs you pick and pick again.Day-dream,
rather, for you do that best. Whatever you wish for now, is a wish granted in light
of a redemptive, hopeful, and pleasure-filled eternity ahead. As always, I'll be
there for the celebration.
This month, when you sit across from the gregarious big mouth on your preferred
mode of public transportation, wishing that he would just slap his cell phone shut
for once and keep quiet, remember that even the smallest wish can traverse a million
miles and thus fulfill a million dreams. But only if you make the wish. So says Madame
Bayaz: "Wish beyond the reaches of that phone call you'll want to make once
you get off at your destination. And so, dream beyond the distance of the aisle that
separates you and that big mouth in space and beyond the bus route, in time. That
dream you dream, that wish, will travel beyond the horizon of the now. That wish
will be granted."
It is only in retrospect that you can bow down in total humility before the miracles
of a universe so filled with wonder, isn't it? Only in retrospect that you realize
that your childhood wish to have a younger sister has been fulfilled. Perhaps not
in the way you had expected it and perhaps not as immediately as you wanted it.But
today, you have a baby sister who can't sleep nights when she's separated from you
and you have at least five friends who might as well have been your sisters judging
from the cat fights you get yourselves into on a monthly basis. It is in retrospect
that you realize that every love that you've had perhaps not individually, but in
the confluence of background sets and characters over time, has fulfilled your wish
for a life companion. In light of these ominous signs that flood Madame Bayaz' consciousness:
Make a wish now... an impossible wish like the one for a younger sibling when you
were a child, or like 'the happily ever after' of your teenage years, and see how
the patchwork of time and space will serve in granting you your every dream .and
grant them, by whatever means possible. Then, just say, "Thank you."
The third world war against one man may have flitted by on your TV screen and
but for the occasional crisis that that may have stirred in your daily routines,
you've lived in a dubiously happy child-like state of bliss since October. At play
in your basement with plaster and honey bee clay, you've wrestled every thing from
an empty soap bottle to the nuts and bolts of a delivery truck into a beautiful helmeted
dragon fly woman in a size 12 (40 European). You've hidden the masks of 'gods long
forgotten' and the feet of your beloved in its fins. (No doubt she'll reach for the
stars some day soon, her reflection animated in a deep blue pool.) As evening breaks,
you make a ritual cup of tea, light the candles hidden in the corner of each of your
six rooms and you make a wish. Tonight, as you blow out your candles, make a wish
for peace. For if Madame Bayaz is right, it is your power of childlike hope for the
future and your intuitive reliance on the goodness of the gods, despite their frivolous
play in human lives, that has made in you the star that you are about to become;
the star of hope; the star before whose brilliance every wish is fulfilled.
It would seem that today, every wish of every man and woman who has over the centuries
whispered: "I wish that the summer were already here" has been granted.
That sigh, uttered in the long ago and the far away, was fulfilled in our lifetime,
yours and mine. The sun is out. The birds are singing and the trees are blossoming
in mid- winter. (It is at least so when Madame Bayaz closes her eyes, and hums a
bar or two with her head tilted back to face the sky.She, at least, sees the world
at its most beautiful, at its warmest, at its most blossoming.) This vision, of course,
hides the real fact that the world may be at its most depleted, given the, let's
say, minor issue of the green-house effect. Regardless, take the time in this state
of summer bliss in the heart of winter to consider the unfulfilled wishes of future
generations. Make a wish for blue skies, for organic fruits, for cascading waterfalls
and the scent of cedar... that wish, yours, for the most distant of futures, is already
On the subway trains in Washington DC. there are signs up this month saying: "Take
the L train and end up in Paris." and then "Take the R train and end up
in Rio" I also saw one that said: "Take the F train and end up in Tehran."
Black on white, the sign over each passenger's head, reveals the dreams of each to
each. Of course we've all wished we were elsewhere as we put on our work faces in
the morning to face other faces equally made up for business display. Wishing, of
course... Wishing instead that we were swinging in the arms of a romantic partner
along the banks of the Seine, or in the mingling bodies of a wild carnival by Guanabara
bay, or waiting in line for a noon-e sangack at the neighborhood's bakery in Tehran,
knowing full well that some dear soul has cleaned the sabzi (fresh herbs) and selected
the freshest Bulgarian feta cheese for the meal. Madame Bayaz believes that the signs
in the subway are good omens for all of us this month. So, make your travel wish
as you board. It is written that your wish will be fulfilled the minute you step
off. Where ever you may end up, dear Aquarius, just watch out for the pick-pockets!
I can see how as you are reading your Madame Bayaz horoscope and waiting for your
lunch break, the thought might occur to you that there is room enough here to multi-task
and indeed to flutter between the option of getting a pizza, a light salad or a khoreshte-gheyme
(a Persian lentil stew) for your lunch. As I've already made clear in my opening
remarks regarding the status of the stars this month, the likelihood of your getting
a khoreshte-gheyme for lunch is greater in a small town without a Persian restaurant,
as is that New York style pizza slice you're craving when you are in Hamadan. In
other words, as counter intuitive as it may seem, the geographic remove that is the
measure of your distance from the fulfilled wish, will finally be decisive in what
you'll have for lunch. So, let your thoughts go, and devise the wildest of meals
for your own delight. Or dream the dream I dream, if you can't come up with your
own: that you're in Malaysia, languishing in the sun next to a pool as your Indonesian
cook gives the nasi goreng (fried rice) another dab of sambal and the lobster a final
dip in its boiling pond before he serves it all up pool-side on a red floral porcelain
platter. Add a few blondes in bikinis around the set for the sophomoric gawker, and
voila, there you are! Nooshe-jaan!
To contact Madame Bayaz write to: email@example.com