poetryrepairs 16.01:004

FERESHTEH SHOLEVAR : Maladies of Their Minds

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Maladies of Their Minds

Everyone in Dezashoob called him crazy Mamad. no one claimed him no one bothered to help him and if he got sick passers-by would think it was an episode of his mental malady. His age unknown he could neither write, nor read made noises to speak with white foams forming in the corners of his mouth. He laughed boisterously when children threw stones at him he chased them, throwing his arms at them his laughter and weeping sounded the same. He wore wide, black kaftan pants hiding his enlarged prostate and a stained white shirt donated by a grocer. He lived on the corner of Dezashoob Bazar under a deserted sky, had free meals at a nearby Mosque slept in an empty coffin, and in winters good Samaritans spared him a blanket and shoes. Rumor has it that one day As he was dozing on the street Stricken by high fever and cramps some youngsters threw gasoline and burning matches at him to wake him up. He couldnít get up fast enough caught on fire and burned to his bones. Some were screaming and some were amused.

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FERESHTEH SHOLEVAR Grandma was small and slim had long, thin hair and wore golden bracelets inherited from her mother. Despite the hard work at home, and a husband 25 years older she kept on smiling and praying. Grandmaís belly grew every year With the rise of the full moon And she delivered babies, out of whom A few survived. Grandpa was big and heavy. Once we caught him on the top of grandma and thought he would break her bones. She didnít break her bones, instead, she became more haggard day by day, still carrying babies. We thought she looked like a shrinking apricot with a big stone in the middle and we would giggle. When Grandpa died she wore black at all times, Cut her hair and put lipstick on. We could see her with a flat belly for the first time. On Fridays, she would visit grandpaís grave taking sweet dates and Halva, as customary, for the poor women and their children to scavenge the offerings.

poetryrepairs #220 16.01:004


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FERESHTEH SHOLEVAR was born and raised in Tehran where she studied foreign languages. She both taught and worked as a translator in Tehran. Sholevar immigrated to Germany and then USA in 1978. She received a Masterís degree in Creative Writing at Rosemont College, Pa. She has written six books of poetry and a novel. She writes in English, in German, French and Farsi. FERESHTEH SHOLEVAR won a few awards; editorís choice, in Philadelphia Poets magazine in 2011, PA Poetry Societyís s in 2004 and the John and Rose Petracca Award of Philadelphia Poets Magazine 2014. Her poems have appeared in many literary magazines in USA and Germany. She is working on a childrenís book and a book of poetry.