Poetry in Translation

The Wind up Doll

By September 5, 2022November 25th, 2023No Comments

She could hang in in silence
Even longer, Yes, much longer

With a gaze fixed like the gaze of the dead
She could stare at the smoke of a cigarette
At the shape of a cup
At the faded flower of the rug
At an illusory mark on the wall

She could draw the curtain with stiff fingers and see
it’s pouring hard in the alley

A child with vibrant balloons,
stands under an arch
A rickety cart leaves the empty square in a clattery haste

She could remain there by the curtain,
but blind, but deaf

She could shout
with a voice rather fake rather alien, oh, I love..

Wrapped in the strapping arms of a Male,
She could act the robust, pretty Female

With a body like a cowhide leather
and a pair of big firm tits
she could ruin the purity of love
in the arms of a drunk, a maniac, a vagabond

She could be a shrew, and mock
every astounding enigma

She could work on solving a crossword puzzle,
She could be content finding a useless answer,
Yes, a useless answer of five or six characters

She could kneel all her life
head bent, at the foot of dank shrine

She could find God
in a grave of God Knows whose

She could find faith finding an insignificant coin

She could rot down the stalls of a Mosque, like the Ziaarat-Naameh-Khaan’e Peir

She could amount to nothing, every single time,
in deductions and add ups and multiplies,

She could think of your eyes in their Nest of Rage
as if mere blank buttons on a pair of worn shoes

She could dry up like water down its own hole

She could hide the Splendor of a Moment, shyly
like a silly black & white Instant Photo,
at the bottom of a chest,

In the empty frame of a day,
she could tuck a portrait of a convict,
or a conquered, or a crucified

She could conceal the bare wall with false faces

She could cling on to far more absurd roles
She could exist, like a Wind up Doll,
Observe the world through glass eyes

She could lie year after year in a heap of tulles & sequins
inside a felt box, with a body stuffed with husk,
she could shout with every indecent touch of a hand:   OH HOW VERY LUCKY I AM

Forough Farrokhzad
Translatated by Saghi Ghahraman
Toronto 2003