Iranians are a sentimental nation, a fact that could be used against the accusations of terrorism. Yes, we do have criminals, but what nation doesn’t? And yes, like all mankind, we become involved in a variety of wrongdoings. However, to picture the children of Hafez and Rumi capable of major terrorism, or fear their atomic destruction of the Earth they worship, is a stretch of imagination.
3,000 years of history supports my view. Each time Persia was invaded, it ended the war with embracing the enemy, its people adapted to a new language and culture, and many married the enemy and bore the children of the very people who had come to destroy them! Despite the tragic devastations of both the Acropolis and Persepolis, in the end, Alexander was so moved that he married Roxana and adapted to her Iranian culture and learned the beautiful Persian language.
A non-political writer and poet, each day I hear more chilling news and wonder what is the plan? Politics no longer make sense, and having experienced some level of dictatorship, I am horrified to see the seeds out there. What is the tactic in selling arms to the very people who initiated ISIS? Why are the Arabs not banned from entering this country? And if Islam is so menacing, why embrace the very source of it? But these questions are too big for my feeble mind. All I can do, is look at the bright side and the fact that despite it all, Iran never invaded ANY country in the past three centuries, that so far, none of the known terrorists, nor any mass shooters, have had a drop of Persian blood in them.
I am proud to continue calling my country by its poetic nickname, “The Land of Flowers and Nightingales.” Indeed that is the essence of Persia. Having lived most of my life across the globe and among a nation that thrives on celebration, I turn off the news and absorb the beauty of the season. I trim a tree that isn’t really mine, and I wrap presents for those whose culture in enriched with color and glamour. My heart and soul ache to belong, to be one, and to feel right in calling to this land ‘home.’
The joy of life is only in the moment. It is ‘now.’ I recite from memory part of a moving poem titled Lessons, by the San Diego poet Lizzie Wann.
. . . because elsewhere
or maybe even here tomorrow
it won’t be like this . . .
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