I ache with the pain of your women
I dread with the fear of your girls
I cry with the burning sensation in my eyes
--only tears of devastation, not the acid

The dreamland of my childhood
The envy of the other half of the world
The utopia of clean and simple life
The city of blue mosaics and endless light in its waters

Isfahan, My Isfahan,
Don't despair
Don’t fear
Don't waiver
Don't give up
Grow older
Keep our treasures
Keep your children safe

Live long
Tell the tales
Keep the history
Remain the treasure chest of Iran
And the priceless heritage of humanity

Live Isfahan,

San Francisco, 
October 22, 2014


The Friday Afternoon Discovery

He was sitting next to me at the dining table. I was working, completely focused on what I was doing, and making sure that I didn't take my eyes off the monitor, no matter what I could see in my peripheral vision, and no matter who called on me. I had a deadline to meet, and I was not going to let this slip.

He was working on his letter of application. Every so often he would look up, ask a question, or mutter something, and sometimes I answered absent-mindely, but I mostly kept completely quiet. He knew better than to demand my attention when I was working on a deadline.

I came to a point where I could pause just long enough to ask for an instruction on Skype, and wait to receive the answer before moving on. I looked over at him, sitting in front of his laptop, typing. He had his head bent and his long torso was a little slouched. The 1:00 p.m. sun was pouring in through the window behind him, and he was engulfed in light. That's when I saw them. Three short gray hairs on the right side of his head. I looked again. Yep. There they were, three gray hairs on a full head of short black hair.

I am overwhelmed with indescribable feelings of joy, reflection, and anticipation. My child has gray hair.


11:45 on Monday

It was 11:45
Dozens came
Offices abandoned
Appointments postponed
Deadlines missed

It was 11:45
The trees were high
The sky blue
The grass green
The rose petals ready

It was 11:45
The singers came
The actors came
The musicians came
The authors came
The laymen came
The kids
The elders
They wept

It was 11:45
The ocean looked on
There was no cloud
The sun shone brilliant
And you were missed

It was 11:45
The woman of laughters and joy
The lady of compassion and peace
Now lives forever
In our hearts.

In loving memory of Mitra Pejman.