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  • Eight Poems
  • Abbas Kiarostami (bio)
    Translated from the Persian by Kaveh Akbar and Arman Salem

Tonight I plan to meetWith the moonWith the full moonSeven minutesLeft till seven. [End Page 158]

I am a simple teacherFrom Kaleh Gun villageI have twenty-four studentsWith shaved headsGlowing eyesAnd round white collars. [End Page 159]

There is a celebrationAt my neighbor's houseFor an occasionI do not know. [End Page 160]

The man cameThe man came with a scythe

Clusters tangled—A severing, an arrival. [End Page 161]

A seminar of moon and sunAt the cusp of dawn. [End Page 162]

Twenty thousand milesBeneath the ocean:A line of poetry,Twisting between moss. [End Page 163]

Veteran money vendorsSteady the timesBy resting their hands. [End Page 164]

Poor loversIn the night's darknessScatter secret poemsAway from the night patrol's eyes.

VendorsVending verse. [End Page 165]

Abbas Kiarostami

Abbas Kiarostami (1940–2016) was an Iranian film director, poet, writer, producer, and visual artist. Among the titans of contemporary cinema, Kiarostami was also a devoted poet, composing several volumes of original poetry in his lifetime, in addition to curating anthologies of classical Persian verse.