Vox Populi

A Public Sphere for Poetry, Politics, and Nature

Mohammad Omidvar: How did the Iranian Revolution go so far off the rails?

. Even though it has to wage much of its struggle underground, the Tudeh Party of Iran, 40 years after the overthrow of the autocratic U.S.-installed Shah, continues the fight … Continue reading

February 15, 2019 · Leave a comment

Majid Naficy: A Return to the Garden of Goethe

If your son asks you When was the best day of the Revolution What will you tell him?  Will you say instantly: February 11, 1979? The day you opened the gate of Evin … Continue reading

February 15, 2019 · Leave a comment

Majid Naficy: Painters

They have erected scaffolds by the bay And are painting the high towers of power lines. The seagulls circle over their heads Sobbing for their lost lookouts. I count. There … Continue reading

January 27, 2019 · Leave a comment

Majid Naficy: Measuring Tree

Every morning they walk By the measuring tree On their way to school. Today the girl says: Daddy! Watch!” She stands on tiptoes And lifts her right arm To touch … Continue reading

August 24, 2018 · Leave a comment

Majid Naficy: Calabrian Fig

Every morning when I go stair climbing I see her with a rake in hand Standing by a fig tree In front of her Roman house With arches and domes. … Continue reading

August 15, 2018 · 1 Comment

Majid Naficy: Nightmare at Dawn

I just let go of a nightmare And jumped out of my coffin. The moon peeks out from behind my neighbor’s rooftop. At this moment one should pick a pen. … Continue reading

July 31, 2018 · Leave a comment

Majid Naficy: Azad in Dubai

My son Azad has gone to Dubai With Zhu, one of his artists. I tell him: “Go to Khalifa Tower And see if from its roof You can spot the … Continue reading

July 10, 2018 · Leave a comment

Majid Naficy: Bay to Breakers 

Here is my hajj Here is my hajj From Bay to Breakers. Every year here I have a rendezvous with God, A God who talks In a hundred tongues, Runs, … Continue reading

July 3, 2018 · Leave a comment

Majid Naficy: The Signs of My Mother

Oh high moon! What are you waiting for? Follow your path quickly And carry my message to Isfahan From the window of my bedroom. My mother is still awake And … Continue reading

June 14, 2018 · Leave a comment

Majid Naficy: One night I will return to my birthplace

One night I will return to my birthplace to stand on my rooftop and pick stars. Father will say, ‘Look, There! Don’t you see the Seven Brothers?’ I will stretch … Continue reading

May 4, 2018 · Leave a comment

Majid Naficy: The Last Story of Borhan

Borhan Hoseini passed, too. His heart stopped beating Behind the red light. He was in a death car With his last story Carried in a Samsonite brief case. Of our … Continue reading

April 10, 2018 · Leave a comment

Majid Naficy: Languages of My Father

My father knew other languages Besides Persian. When dementia came upon him He wanted to test his memory So he puckered his lips And sang in German time after time: … Continue reading

March 11, 2018 · 1 Comment

Majid Naficy: Helen

Sometimes I see Helen Passing by Wearing a long skirt. She pushes a metal walker Scraping against the ground. She always asks: “Sir! What day is today? What day is … Continue reading

January 22, 2018 · 1 Comment

Majid Naficy: Empty House

Every Wednesday since Mother’s death Four sisters get together In their empty childhood home To share memories And make a plan for the house: Should they sell to developers For … Continue reading

January 13, 2018 · 1 Comment

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