Ali Abdolrezaei (Abol Froushan, trans.) TWO POEMS


You are reading a poem called circle
Hold it there
Hands off the library
Arm around the windows and the doors
Bedding into the sofa
Now you may read a poem by Ali Abdolrezaie
Please open the book
You see?  You are reading a poem called Circle
So hold it there
Take your hands off the library
Kick the door you already opened
Out of the house
Tumble down the stairs
In the new park or the old one behind the Town Hall
On the same bench that sent my father door to door and
stopped my mother Sit down
Tell them off those children playing ball
Now you may read a poem by Ali Abdolrezaei
Please turn the page of this gate whichever way you like
It’s a shame
You are standing at the end of a poem Called Circle


In the massacre of my words
they’ve beheaded my last line
and blood        ink like           is hitting on paper
there’s death   stretched over the page
and life           like a window ajar      is shattered by a rock
a new gun has finished off the world
and I   imported goods like through this alley’s doors
am still the very meagre room that emigrated

I in my life who am pen like to the lines of this meagre page
am mother
The cat’s paws are still prancing
to scare the mouse
running for the hole they filled in

In pursuit of the lesson I did at school
I’m no longer Jack the lover to my Jill
I’m doing my new homework
You cross it out
And in the girl who will tumble at this poem’s end
build a house
filled with a door open like a wound
and from in-between the edges of death
like a room gone from this house       lived happily
a girl    who wanting to make me her own
would throw morsels in her voice      to tease me over
to the temple of her body
for my eyes to keep whirling and whirling
to make a Dervish of me again
How the eyes
these empty sockets
in between the love making of two are thousand handed
How this side of being where I am is all the more other-sided in Iran
Fathurt            mothurt           my brothurt!
My condition is more critical than hurt
writing’s more emasculated than me
and London    with its hair highlights of a weather is still
sisterly awaiting
Death to stretch over my body
for life to kill me again

My heart is bleeding
for the poet whose queue of words is getting longer
for the branch less sparrow who’s swallowed its twitter
for the restitution of a crow with no overhead wire
for myself
gone from the house   like electricity
I was somebody
Did the foolish thing became a poet!

— translated by Abol Froushan

Ali Abdolrezaei
was born on 10 April 1969 in Northern Iran. He completed his primary and secondary education in his city of birth and after receiving his diploma in mathematics passed the nationwide university entrance exams. He graduated with a Masters degree in Mechanical Engineering from Tehran Technical and Engineering University.

He began his professional poetic career in 1986 and became one of the most serious and contentious poets of the new generation of Persian poetry. Abdolrezaei has had an undeniable effect on many poets of his generation through of his poetry as well as his speeches and interviews. He is also one of the few poets who succeeded in expressing his unique poetic individuality. His eight varied books of poetry – From Riskdom, Shinema, So Sermon of Society, Improvisation, This Dear Crying, Paris in Renault, You Name this Book and Only Iron Men Live in the Rain – endorse his poetic creativity and power. Publication is forthcoming for his poetry collection La Elaha Ella Love and the multi-textual Hermaphrodite. Both have received diverse critical reviews. Nearly all well-known poets and critics of Persian poetry have written about Abdolrezaei’s work.

In September 2002 after his protest against heavy censorship of his latest books such as So Sermon of Society and Shinema, he was banned from teaching and public speaking. He left Iran and after staying a few months in Germany, followed by two years in France, he moved to London, where he has been living for the last three years.

Danse Macabre is proud to present more of Ali’s poetry to our worldwide audience.

Read more of his work in Danse Macabre 53



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