Ahmad Shamlu

For Iran Darroudi and her colorful struggle

Painters before you
Created many deer through a mixture of leaves
And a flock of sheep in a mountainside
With a shepherd hidden in the vagaries of clouds 
On the mountaintop.
Or in a full and simple manner they portrayed a hunger, stricken reindeer suffering in a colorful and smoggy forest.

Paint us the lines of similarity: 
The sigh, iron and quicklime
And the smoke, the lie and the pain
For silence is not our virtue.

The silence of water can be drought 
And the cry of thirst,
The silence of wheat can be hunger 
and the victorious cry of famine
Just as the silence of the sun is darkness.
But man’s silence is the absence of God, the absence of the universe.
Paint us the cry !
Paint my age 

In the curve of a ship with a lash, stroke of pain !
My neighbour, this stranger with hope and God,
Our respect which, turned into mere coins, is sold away.

We had at our beck all the words of the world and yet,
Did not say a worthy thing
For in all that we said, one word was absent : Freedom !

We did not pronounce it
But you paint it ! 

March 1973