[PROVISIONAL TRANSLATION FROM PERSIAN]

 

[Translator’s notes appear in square brackets]

[Personal information has been redacted.]

 

[Ehsanollah Mehdizade’s letter from the prison]

7 Farvardin 1360 [27 March 1981]

 

It is not without pain, this tulip field of Men

 

The great Alexander as he was leaving this world

Said these words to his broken hearted mother

 

When you mourn for me once I am gone

Do it the way it behoves the occasion

 

Do not cry alone and ask a group of friends

To come and cry to accompany your mourning

 

But find those who are not busy mourning

For their beloved who has gone before me

 

For that [who] cries for her loss with broken heart,

Will do a condescending cry for you

 

And when the mother was following his will

To cry together with a group of friends

 

Not one soul was found, not mourning a beloved

Even though they searched every door and every alley

 

This one said my sister died giving birth

And that one said, my husband died on a journey

 

And one said that from months earlier

My eyes have been teary from the death of my mother

 

The story is, because death had touched every one

Not one person came to join her mourning

 

When Alexander’s mother saw how it was

She realised the secret behind his request

 

Meaning my dear we will all die and depart

Do not cry for it bears no result

 

Not one dead will ever rise from the dust

Even if you mourn for a hundred years

 

Hardship can become easy when equally shared

When calamity becomes common it loses its effect

 

Everyone you look at is suffering the same

It is not without pain, this tulip field of Men

 

Mother, oh thou sweeter than my soul, oh trust of God, my whole being is from you, every morning I wake up with you on my mind, I breathe with the thought of you, I search for you, my whole being is thirsty for your sight, but alas, I died of thirst so close to the fountain of our reunion

As Anatole France once said, I make my present happy by remembering the pain of the past

 

I won’t remember you in my entire life

For those who remember their beloved, must have forgotten them before

 

Mother, as I previously wrote to your presence, the head you gave up in the path of The Beloved, do not ask for it back, but... [Document is unfinished]