Winter

Translation 1 – by Maryam Dilmaghani

And if you ever greet them
they will not pause one instant
to greet you back.
Heads are hanging sternly lowly.

And if you salute the passing friends
They will not raise their heads
They will not move their gaze
to even glance at your face.
*****
The sight is lost in an opaque, thick haze.
No sign of the stars: They no longer blaze!
The eyes see no more-but one step ahead;
We pass silent and sombre with our tumbling tread.
To a passing man, it is your hand that you lend
Only hesitantly he extends his to you, Alas My Friend!
The air is bitter cold and cruel, the route is a dead-end!
You exhale and your breath turns into a dark blur,
raising insolently a wall in front of your eye.
If this is your own breath then what could you expect
from your friends –of far-away or close-by?
*****
O My Honest Saviour!
O My Old Virtuous Companion!
I hail you with reverence and respect!
Welcome me back!
Open me your door!
It is me, it’s me: Your visitor of all nights!
It is me, it’s me: The sorrowful errant!
It is me: The discarded, The beaten stone!
It is me: The injury to Creation; The song out of tune!
Recall? Not the black, not the white: The colourless buffoon!
Come and open me the door!
I am freezing; open the door before!
*****
O Counterpart! O Generous Host!
Your usual guest is trembling in the icy outside!
And if you have ever heard a sound:
It is not raining and in this lane there is not even a soul!
The noise is from the encounter of my teeth
with this overwhelming cold.
*****
Tonight I am here to reimburse you in mass!
I am here to go clear in front of a wine-glass!
Do not say “It’s late; it’s almost the crack of dawn!”
The sky is deceitful with its blushed fawn!
This red is not from the rays of light;
The red is the imprint of this cold’s shameless clout!
The pendant of the bosom of the heavens, Sun,-dead or afoot-
is buried, obscured, beneath the weight of a nine-storey vault!
O Counterpart! O Generous Host!
Pour wine into the glass to light up this bitter exile:
You see? In this winter days and nights are equal.
*****
And if you ever greet them
they will not pause one instant
to greet you back.
The air is heavy, the doors are closed,
Heads hang lowly, and hands are cloaked.
Your breath turns to a dark shadow,
Hearts are fading away under the sway of sorrow.
The trees are naked, like frozen, forsaken bones,
Earth is desolate, Sky is falling down.
Moon and Sun are lost behind Loads of Litter:
It is, indeed,
The Reign of Winter.

Translation 2 – Iraj Bashiri

Your greetings they’ll ignore.
With their heads resting on their chests,
They seek warmth from their breasts,
None affords to lift a head to greet the guests.

Vision is limited,
The road’s dark and slick.
Your extended friendly hand is refused,
Not because they are confused;
They rather keep their hands where they are warmed.
It is frightfully cold. Do not be alarmed.

Observe your breath,
Leaving the warmth of your breast;
Turns into a dark cloud
Before it rests
On the wall before your chest.

If your breath is this unkind,
What is amiss; if
Distant and near friends,
Were to keep you out of mind?

My manly Messiah,
Uncompromising man of faith!
Winter is cowardly and cold,
You keep the words warm,
Sustain that stance bold.

Accept my greetings.
Let me in.
Your nightly guest:

The pedestrian rock,
The curse of creation,
The uneven melody.

Allow this pest, a moment of rest.
I am not from Rome or Africa.
Allow the Africans the south,
North, the Romans.
Colorblind I am,
Enough for both.

Let me in!
Let my sorrow in!
Be a good host,
To your ever-present guest,
Who shivers behind your door.
Have mercy on the poor.

There is no hail.
You may have heard a tale,
There exists no death,
Only chattering teeth and a short breath.

Tonight I intend to pay back
The account for which I lack
It is not too late
It is not midnight
There is no morning
Don’t be fooled by the dawn’s false trap.

My frozen red ears
Bespeak winter’s harsh slap.
And your universal sun
At the mercy of each breath,
Rather than your coffin
Brightens the hidden cave of death.

Dear friend, with wine,
Illumine the sight;
Night is day
Day is night.

They’ll ignore your greeting
Amid this depressing weather
Doors are shut
Heads on chests
Hands hidden,
Hopes are cruelly cut.

Trees are but
Crystalline skeletons,
The sky’s moved closer;
The land is devoid of life,
Dimmed are the sun and the moon
Winter is rife

Leave a Reply