Mohammad-Taqí Bahār: “Rid the heart of darkness” – a poem for Nowruz

Mohammad-Taqí Bahār (Iranian poet, 1884-1951)



Spring now, flowers are coming, there’s happiness in the green vine,

Blossoms are blooming – all except mine.

Free spirit, don’t lose heart, on New Year’s Day *,

I heard from the lips of a lily today:

Do not sing the seven illusions this New Year’s Eve **, I beg thee:

Complaint, curse, corruption, cacophony, clumsiness, chaos and cruelty.

The seven symbols make:  of serene “sabzeh”, of scented “sonbol” and sweet “seeb”;

Of “senjed”, “samanu”, “seer” and “somaq”.

Send the seven symbols to the table of a lover.

Toss the seven illusions toward the door of an ill-wisher.

It’s New Year’s Eve – rid the heart of darkness.

Eventually this shadow-night will turn to brightness.

Carry out the New Year traditions and, God willing,

Bring back that feeling of excellent beginnings !





“sabzeh” – a flowerpotful of newly-sprouted wheat

“sonbol” – the Hyacinth flower – native to Iran, early Spring bloomer

“seeb” – apple

“senjed” – fruit of the mountain-ash tree, or red date, a.k.a.  jujube

“samanu” – a creamy wheat germ pudding

“seer” – garlic

“somaq” – red berries of the Sumac tree

Editor’s note:  Also “serkeh” – vinegar – representing old age and patience…




* The Persian/Iranian New Year is always the same day as the

First Day of Spring – March 20th this year.  It is known as

Nowruz – “New Day”.  Nowruz is pre-Islamic in origin, and is

celebrated by the Kurdish people as well.

** March 19th this year