Poems by Forugh Farrokhzad – II

I will greet the sun again

I will greet the sun again,
greet the stream that once flowed in me,
the clouds that were my unfurling thoughts,
the aching growth of the grove’s poplars
who passed with me through seasons of draught.
I will greet the flock of crows
who gifted me the groves’ night perfume
and my mother who lived in the mirror
and was my old age’s reflection.
Once more I will greet the earth
who, in her lust to re-create me, swells
her flaming belly with green seeds.

I will come. I will come. I will.
My hair trailing deep-soil scents.
My eyes intimating the dark’s density.
I will come with a bouquet picked
from shrubs on the other side of the wall.
I will come, I will come. I will.
The doorway will glow with love
and I will once again greet those in love, greet
the girl standing in the threshold’s blaze.

I Feel Sorry for the Garden

No one is thinking about the flowers,
no one is thinking about the fish,
no one wants
to believe that the garden is dying,
that the garden’s heart has swollen
under the sun,
that the garden’s mind is slowly
being drained of green memories,
that the garden’s senses are
a separate thing rotting huddled in a corner.

our old courtyard is lonely.
our garden yawns
in anticipation of an unknown rain cloud,
and our pool is empty.

inexperienced little stars
fall to the earth from treetop heights.
and from the pale windows of the fishes’ abode
the sound of coughing comes at night.
our courtyard garden is lonely.

Fathers says:
it’s too late for me.
it’s over for me.
I shouldered my burden
and did my share.
and in this room, from dawn to disk,
he reads either the Shahnameh
or The History Of Histories.
Father says to Mother:
to hell with all birds and fish.
when I die, then
what difference will it make
that there is a garden
or there isn’t a garden?
my retirement pension is enough for me.

Mother’s whole life
is a prayer rug spread
at the threshold of fears of hell.
at the bottom of everything Mother
always searches for traces of sin
and thinks that a plant’s apostasy
has contaminated the garden.
Mother prays all day long.
Mother is a natural sinner
and she breathes on all the flowers
and on all the fish, and
exorcises herself.
Mother is waiting for a coming
and a forgiveness to descend upon the earth.

My brother calls the garden a graveyard.
My brother laughs at the profusion of weeds
and keeps a count
of the fish corpses
that decompose
beneath the water’s sick skin.
My brother is addicted to philosophy.
My brother thinks the cure for the garden
lies in its destruction.
he gets drunk
and bangs on doors and walls
and tries to say
that he is very wart, despondent and despairing.
he carries his despair
along with his identity cars, pocket calendar,
lighter and ballpoint pen

to the street and the bazaar.
and his despair is so small
that every night
It gets lost in the crowd at the bar.

and my sister who was the flowers’ friend
and took her heart’s simple words
to their kind and silent company
when Mother spanked her
and occasionally offered sun and cookies
to the family of fishÉ
her house is on the other side of the city.
in her artificial home,
with her artificial goldfish,
and in the security of her artificial husband’s love,
and under the branches of her artificial apple tree,
she sings artificial songs
and produces very real babies.
whenever she comes to visit us
and the hem of her skirt gets soiled
with the garden’s poverty,
she takes a perfume bath.
Every time she comes to visit us,
is pregnant.

Our garden is lonely,
our garden is lonely.
all day long
from behind the door comes the sound
of shattering and explosions.
all our neighbors plant
bombs and machineguns in their gardens
instead of flowers.
all our neighbors
cover their tiled ponds,
become unwitting
secret storehouses of gunpowder.
and the children along our street
have filled their schoolbags
with small bombs.
our garden is confused.

I fear an age
that has lost its heart.
I am scared of the thought
of so many useless hands
and of picturing so many estranged faces.
like a school child
madly in love with her geometry lesson,
I am alone.
and I think that the garden
can be taken to a hospital.
I think…
I think…
I think…
and the garden’s heart has swollen
under the sun,
and the garden mind is slowly
being emptied of green memories.

Later On

My death will come someday to me
One day in spring, bright and lovely
One winter day, dusty, distant
One empty autumn day, devoid of joy.

My death will come someday to me
One bittersweet day, like all my days
One hollow day like the one past
Shadow of today or of tomorrow.

My eyes tune to half dark hallways
My cheeks resemble cold, pale marble
Suddenly sleep creeps over me
I become empty of all painful cries.

Slowly my hands slide o’er my notes
Delivered from poetry’s spell,
I recall that once in my hands
I held the flaming blood of poetry.

The earth invites me into its arms,
Folks gather to entomb me there
Perhaps at midnight my lovers
Place above me wreaths of many roses.

posted on Heliotricity

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