I want a cup of sin

Simin Behbahani

    He said I want that which cannot be found.

    I want a cup of sin, a cup of corruption,
    and some clay mixed with darkness,
    from which I shall mold an image shaped like man,
    wooden-armed and straw-haired.
    His mouth is big.
    He has lost all his teeth.
    His looks reflect his ugliness within.
    Lust has made him violate all prohibitions
    and to grow on his brow an “organ of shame.”
    His eyes are like two scarlet beams,
    one focused on a sack of gold,
    the other on the pleasures found in bed.
    He changes masks like a chameleon,
    has a two-timing heart like an eel.
    He grows tall like a giant branch,
    as if his body has acquired vegetable properties.
    Then, he will come to me,
    intent on my oppression.
    I will protest and scream against his horror.
    And that ogre called man
    will tame me with his insults.
    As I gaze into his eyes
    innocently and full of shame,
    I will scold myself: you see,
    how you spent a lifetime wishing for “Adam.”
    Here you have what you asked for.

    Translated by : Farzaneh Milani

Simin Behbahani - Simin Beh'bahani (born July 20 , 1927, Tehran, Iran) is one of the most prominent figures of the modern Persian literature and one of the most outstanding amongst the contemporary Persian poets. She is Iran's national poet and an icon of the Iranian intelligentsia and literati who affectionately refer to her as the lioness of Iran. She has been nominated twice for the Nobel Prize in literature, and has "received many literary accolades around the world."
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