No spam. Not selling anything. Max 1-2 newsletters a month.

Kaveh's Blog logo

Personal blog

Kaveh Tehrani

Home Full of Friends

Published on
2 mins read

As another Nowruz comes to mark the first day of spring, I decided to translate one more beautiful contemporary Persian poem I couldn't quite find a decent translation for.

Persian poets have had a long storied tradition of blending each other's work into their own, such as by providing an alternate viewpoint about the same story or continuing it. The poem below is written by Fereydoon Moshiri as somewhat of a response to a famous Persian poem called "Address" by Sohrab Sepehri.

It is a beautiful and emotional poem about friendship. Like any translation, let alone one done by an amateur like me, some amount of nuanced meaning is lost in changing the medium. In Persian there are many words to describe your relationship with others ranging from mere acquaintances to best friends. The word "doost" would translate to "friend" in English, but it carries quite a bit more weight. It is a word much closer in meaning to describe your high school bestie who wouldn't think twice having your back in a fight, rather than your casual drinking buddy watching sports together.

As always, may the language gods forgive me for my mistakes. Any feedback is always welcomed and appreciated.

I yearn to have my home,
full of friends.
In every litte corner,
friends seated in peaceful calm,
recounting stories, hearing stories...

Anyone who wishes to enter,
my pretty home full of love and camaraderie,
gift me a basket,
full of the scent of red roses.

The condition to enter,
is to cleanse the heart.
The condition to have that,
is a heart and soul, clear and pure...

On its door, I will hang petals of a flower.
On it, I will write with the green brush of spring.
I will write, hey friend
Our house is here!

So that Sohrab asks no more,
"Where is the friend's house?"