Sunday, December 2, 2012

Ziba Karbassi: Iranian Poet

ZIBA KARBASSI was born in Tabriz, northwestern Iran. She had to leave her country with her mother in the mid-1980s when she was a young teenage and for most of the time since then she has lived in London. She has published eight books of poetry in Persian ,two books in english and italian and is widely regarded as the most accomplished Persian poet of her generation. Her dense and revolutionary lyrical poetry achieves an intensity and balance that is rare in contemporary poetry. She has read widely across Europe and America. She was chairperson of the Iranian Writers Association (in exile) from 2002 to 2004 and editor of and one of the editor in Exiled Ink literature magazines in London.last year she won golden apple poetry price for Azerbaijan. Her poems have appeared in many languages throughout Europe and the UK and US. Translations by Stephen Watts have appeared in such journals as Poetry Review and Modern Poetry Translation.

The song of the nightingale
Is not up for sale.
Tell your black crows tell Your black crows
Caw Caw

The song of the nightingale Is not up for sale.
And it’s is not a willow that trembles
It’s the frail figure of a woman.
She’s not a willow to tremble!
You, tremble!
It’s a woman on your grave
Who sleeps under you
Takes money and recites the Koran,
In the name of Allah
Slap cold whip money
Weeping insults ha! ha! money
Skin kiss fur coat mane money
Rouge pallor dignity money
Buys eats buys eats eats eats buys…
What! Graveyard? Fear? Are you kidding? You’re kidding, right?
A woman with rosy cheeks and breasts
Tears the white prayer veil off her head
Spreads it on your grave
And you do her.
Her thin body trembling
Her skinny arms and thighs trembling.
She’s not a willow to tremble!
You, tremble!
She has swallowed fear
She’ll swallow you too
Fear! You!
Down below there, up on top there,
You little man!
This woman is to be feared
Even dead, she is to be feared Hajji*
Even dead.
Happy grave,
Happy grave!

Origina lPersian Version
چه چه بلبل فروختنی نیست
کلاغ هایت را بگو
بگو کلاغ هایت
چغ چغ
چه چه بلبل
فروختنی نیست اما
و این بید نیست که می لرزد
اندام نازک زنی ست
بید نیست که بلرزد
تو بلرز
زنی ست که روی قبر تو
زیر تو می خوابد و
پول می گیرد و
سوره ی حمد می خواند
بسم اللّه
سیلی سرما شلّاق پول زنجه بد و بی راه هرّه پول پوست بوسه گیسو
پالتو پوست پول رژ گونه رنگ و رو آبرو پول می خرد می خورد
می خرد می خورد می خورد می خرد
هیقبرستان، ترس، شوخی می کنی، شوخی ست
زنی که با گونه ها و
پستان های گلی اش
چادر نماز سپید
گُل گُلی اش را
از سر می کند روی قبرت پهن می کُند و
می کُنی اش
تن نا زکش که می لرزد
بازوها و رانهای
لا غرش که می لرزد
بید نیست که بلرزد
تو بلرز
ترس را خورده
تو را هم می خورد
تو بترس
آن زیر
آن رو
فقط ترسیدنی ست این زن
مرده اش هم ترس دارد
حاج آقا!
مرده اش هم
قبرت روشن
حاج آقا

The Second Sigh

Do not talk to me.
I dare not even breathe:
the hook of love
sits in ambush
for the red fish
of my heart!

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