Got More Poetry

A reminder to poetry lovers, Pharmaka has “The Third Area” poetry reading featuring four poets with wine and noshes on Thursday, August 27th.  Below the info are two poems new to downtownster by famous Persian poets.

Pharmaka Gallery
101 West 5th Street (corner of 5th and main)
Los Angeles
(213) 689-7999
“The Third Area” poetry reading series at Pharmaka takes place on the last Thursday of every month at 8p.m.

We proudly present poetry by poets who have read at Pharmaka this summer.  They are both Iranian expatriates.

Butcher Shop

a poem by Sholeh Wolpé

Aisha was gunned down
in her father’s butcher shop.
She was twenty-four, a virgin,
had a cat named Hanna.
The boys in black bandanas
the ones with large dark eyes
that devour light
wanted her brother.
And what better place for blood
than a butcher shop
where it already covers
the counters, stains the white aprons,
is sold in long red sausages. 
From The Scar Saloon

Sholeh Wolpe is the author of Rooftops of Tehran (Red Hen Press), Sin—Selected Poems of Forugh Farrokhzad (University of Arkansas Press), The Scar Saloon <> (Red Hen Press), Shame (a play in three acts) and a poetry/music CD (Refuge Studios). She is the associate editor of The Norton Anthology of Modern Literature from the Muslim World (Norton, 2010) and the guest editor of Atlanta Review (2010 Iran issue). Her poems, translations, essays and reviews have appeared in scores of literary journals, periodicals and anthologies worldwide, and have been translated into several languages. Sholeh was born in Iran and presently lives in Los Angeles.

Three Gifts
a Poem by Majid Nacify

In Memory of Saeed

One day my father called us and said:
I have three gifts for you ―
A red heart, an hourglass, and…
O God, I don’t remember the other one.
Mehdy took the heart
Opened its two halves
And strummed the strings of its chambers.
I took the hourglass
And along its white sands
I fell from one half to the other
Asking myself:
What can be done in three minutes?
And Saeed
At age ten went to Paris
For heart surgery
And at age twenty-nine
He was executed in Tehran.
I remember him.
He had red cheeks
And strong hands.   

Majid Naficy, who is the author of more than 20 books written in Persian, fled Iran in 1983, a year and a half after the execution of his wife Ezzat in Tehran. He has published two collections of poetry “Muddy Shoes” (Beyond Baroque Books 1999) and “Father and Son” (Red Hen Press 2003) as well as his doctoral dissertation “Modernism and Ideology in Persian Literature” (University Press of America 1997) in English. He is a contributor to Foreign Policy In Focus <> .

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