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Poetry

Khodanur

By Mahdi Ganjavi
Translated from Persian by the author
A poem by Mahdi Ganjavi in honor of Khodanur Lojei, a Baluchi dancer and protester killed by the security forces in Zahedan, Iran.
a barefoot man chained to a post

Photo via social media

Edited by: Anonymous

 

It’s Khoda’s[1] fortieth.
In thirst you downed him
And from thirst he will arise
When thunderbolts of dance wreck your houses
When invisible gales tear you apart
When absent prayers return to hopeless lips.

The tree of dearth wanted blood.
What beautiful faces.
What spectacular dances.
Oh Khodanur!

In every bird, fly countless skies.
Where are the stones
To rain on their heads
From every possible sky?
A mound of salt they will become
From the hell they raised on earth.
Will they turn back their eyes?

Khoda, stay for a moment!
The sky is here to bid you farewell.
The earth wants to delay your fall.

Oh Khodanur,
Your half-finished dance
Makes walking on earth unjust.

The killer is fast asleep
In the arms of his military dolls.
Where are cautious earthquakes
To cut the earth open
to the depth of their bodies?
The sound of cheering comes from far away.
Where is the clock whose hands move through our pain
Headed to crush their bones?

Revolution shakes us
Before it calms us down.
We saw your hands tied to the pole
And walked our eyes out
Through tears of shame.

Justice is a young desire.

 

[1] Khodanur (literally meaning the light [nur] of God [Khoda]) Lojei was a Baluchi dancer and protester who was killed by the security forces during the bloody Friday of Zahedan. An image of him, tied up and thirsty, has become one of the key symbols of the protests.

The line refers to the fortieth day from his passing, which in Iranian culture of mourning is a day of gathering and remembrance.


© Mahdi Ganjavi. Translation © January 2023 by Mahdi Ganjavi. All rights reserved.

English
a barefoot man chained to a post

Photo via social media

Edited by: Anonymous

 

It’s Khoda’s[1] fortieth.
In thirst you downed him
And from thirst he will arise
When thunderbolts of dance wreck your houses
When invisible gales tear you apart
When absent prayers return to hopeless lips.

The tree of dearth wanted blood.
What beautiful faces.
What spectacular dances.
Oh Khodanur!

In every bird, fly countless skies.
Where are the stones
To rain on their heads
From every possible sky?
A mound of salt they will become
From the hell they raised on earth.
Will they turn back their eyes?

Khoda, stay for a moment!
The sky is here to bid you farewell.
The earth wants to delay your fall.

Oh Khodanur,
Your half-finished dance
Makes walking on earth unjust.

The killer is fast asleep
In the arms of his military dolls.
Where are cautious earthquakes
To cut the earth open
to the depth of their bodies?
The sound of cheering comes from far away.
Where is the clock whose hands move through our pain
Headed to crush their bones?

Revolution shakes us
Before it calms us down.
We saw your hands tied to the pole
And walked our eyes out
Through tears of shame.

Justice is a young desire.

 

[1] Khodanur (literally meaning the light [nur] of God [Khoda]) Lojei was a Baluchi dancer and protester who was killed by the security forces during the bloody Friday of Zahedan. An image of him, tied up and thirsty, has become one of the key symbols of the protests.

The line refers to the fortieth day from his passing, which in Iranian culture of mourning is a day of gathering and remembrance.


© Mahdi Ganjavi. Translation © January 2023 by Mahdi Ganjavi. All rights reserved.

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