Breaking the Language Barrier on Human Rights

Farzad Kamangar’s Letter to His Students, Written Two Years Ago from Prison

May 09, 2010


A Letter from Farzad Kamangar to his Kurdish students; written two years ago while he was detained in Rajai Shahr ‘Gohardasht’ prison.

On May 9, 2010, Farzad Kamangar and four other prisoners were executed by the Iranian regime.

Father Gave Water?

By Farzad Kamangar
Translation Negs Ir, Editing Persian2English

Hello children… I miss you all. I pass my days and nights here singing songs of life while filled with your sweet memories.

Every day I greet the sun rather than you, but I get up every morning with you, while behind these tall walls, I laugh and sleep with your memories. Sometimes I’m filled with nostalgia. I wish it was possible to forget everything- just like how we used to on our return from a school trip when we washed away the dust of our tiredness with the clear water of a river in a small village.

I wish it was possible… I wish it was possible to lend our ears to the “sound of water” and our body to the caress of flowers, as we set up our class sessions in the midst of nature’s beautiful symphony.

I wish we could leave our math books with all its problems under a rock, because when “father does not have any bread to offer at the table,”[1] what difference does it make if Pi equals 3.14 or 100.14?

We used to set aside the science chapter with all its chemical and physical compounds. Rather, we hoped to see a reaction made of “miracles and love” while we said farewell to the clouds in the sky as we watched them drift away with the breeze. We longed for a change that would prevent your naughty classmate Koroush from ending up a worker who, one day, while struggling to earn a piece of bread, will fall from a tall building and leave us forever.

We longed for a different Norooz [Nowruz] (the Persian New Year) that would bring a pair of new shoes, a nice outfit, and a tablecloth full of sweets and candies to us all.

I wish it was possible to revise once again our Kurdish alphabet in secret, away from the furious glance of the school president. I wish it was possible to sing poems and songs for each other in our native language and hold each others hands and continuously dance.

I wish I could once again be the goalkeeper of the first year elementary school boys who dream of becoming Ronaldo so they can score a goal to beat their teacher.

It is such a pity that in our land our dreams and wishes are covered by the dust of forgetfulness much earlier than a simple portrait would. I wish I could once again become a constant member of Mr. Chain Builder [2] with the first year elementary school girls; the same girls I know in a few years will secretly write in their diary, “I wish I was never born a girl.”

I know you have grown up and will get married, but for me you remain the same pure angels who still bear the kiss of Ahura Mazda [3] on your beautiful eyes. Who knows, perhaps if you angels were not born in such poverty and pain, you could now be collecting signatures for the One Million Signatures campaign. Or, if you were not born in this corner of “God’s forgotten land,” you would not be forced to say farewell to school at 13 years with tearful eyes, under the “white lace of womanhood,” to fully experience the “second gender’s bitter story”.

Girls of the land of Ahura, tomorrow, when you will be picking flowers in the valleys to make crowns for your children, tell them about all the pureness and the happiness of your childhood.

Boys of the land of the sun, I know you cannot sit, sing, and laugh with your classmates anymore, because after the sadness of growing to become men, you have to face the grief of having to “earn bread”. Remember to not turn your backs on your, poems, songs, Leyla’s, and dreams. Teach your children to be children of “poems and rain” of their land; for the present and tomorrow.

I leave you to the wind and to the sun so that, in the near future, you will sing lessons of love and sincerity to our land.

Your childhood friend, playmate, and teacher,

Farzad Kamangar
– Rajai Shahr Prison, Karaj
February 28, 2008

[1] “Father provides bread” is the first text taught in Farsi lessons to children at elementary schools in Iran.

[2] Amoo Zanjir Baaf (Mr. Chain builder) is an old Persian children’s game.

[3] Ahura Mazda is an ancient Zoroastrian divinity.

نامه فرزاد کمانگر معلم کرد به دانش آموزانش

بابا آب داد !؟

بچه ها سلام، دلم براى همه شما تنگ شده ، اينجا شب و روز با خيال و خاطرات شيرينتان شعر زندگى ميسرايم ، هر روز به جاى شما به خورشيد روزبخير ميگويم ، از لاى اين ديوارهاى بلند با شما بيدار ميشوم ، با شما ميخندم و با شما ميخوابم . گاهى , چيزى شبيه دلتنگى , همه وجودم را ميگيرد . کاش ميشد مانند گذشته خسته از بازديد که آن را گردش علمى ميناميديم ، و خسته از همه هياهوها ، گرد و غبار خستگيهايمان را همراه زلالى چشمه روستا به دست فراموشى ميسپرديم ، کاش ميشد مثل گذشته گوشمان را به ,صداى پاى آب , و تنمان را به نوازش گل و گياه ميسپرديم و همراه با سمفونى زيباى طبيعت کلاس درسمان را تشکيل ميداديم و کتاب رياضى را با همه مجهولات زير سنگى ميگذاشتيم

چون وقتى بابا نانى براى تقديم کردن در سفره ندارد چه فرقى ميکند ، پى سه مميز چهارده باشيد با صد مميز چهارده ، درس علوم را با همه تغييرات شيميايى و فيزيکى دنيا به کنارى ميگذاشتيم و به اميد تغييرى از جنس ,عشق و معجزه, لکه هاى ابر را در آسمان همراه با نسيم بدرقه ميکرديم و منتظر تغييرى ميمانيدم که کورش همان همکلاسى پرشورتان را از سر کلاس راهى کارگرى نکند و در نوجوانى از بلنداى ساختمان به دنبال نان براى هميشه سقوط ننمايد و ترکمان نکند ، منتظر تغييرى که براى عيد نوروز يک جفت کفش نو و يک دست لباس خوب و يک سفره پر از نقل و شيرينى براى همه به همراه داشته باشد .

کاش ميشد دوباره و دزدکى دور از چشمان ناظم اخموى مدرسه الفباى کرديمان را دوره ميکرديم و براى هم با زبان مادرى شعر مى سروديم و آواز ميخوانديم و بعد دست در دست هم ميرقصيديم و ميرقصيديم و ميرقصيديم . کاش ميشد باز در بين پسران کلاس اولى همان دروازه بان ميشدم و شما در روياى رونالدو شدن به آقا معلمتان گل ميزديد و همديگر را در آغوش ميکشيديد ، اما افسوس نميدانيد که در سرزمين ما روياها و آرزوها قبل از قاب عکسمان غبار فراموشى به خود ميگيرد ، کاش ميشد باز پاى ثابت حلقه عمو زنجيرباف دختران کلاس اول ميشدم ، همان دخترانى که ميدانم سالها بعد در گوشه دفتر خاطراتتان دزدکى مينويسيد کاش دختر به دنيا نميامديد.

ميدانم بزرگ شده ايد ، شوهر ميکنيد ولى براى من همان فرشتگان پاک و بى آلايشى هستيد که هنوز , جاى بوسه اهورا مزدا, بين چشمان زيبايتان ديده ميشود ،راستى چه کسى ميداند اگر شما فرشتگان زاده رنج و فقر نبوديد ، کاغذ به دست براى کمپين زنان امضاء جمع نميکرديد و يا اگر در اين گوشه از , خاک فراموش شده خدا , به دنيا نمى آمديد ، مجبور نبوديد در سن سيزده سالگى با چشمانى پر از اشک و حسرت , زير تور سفيد زن شدن , براى آخرين بار با مدرسه وداع کنيد و , قصه تلخ جنس دوم بودن , را با تمام وجود تجربه کنيد

. دختران سرزمين اهورا ، فردا که در دامن طبيعت خواستيد براى فرزندانتان پونه بچينيد يا برايشان از بنفشه تاجى از گل بسازيد حتماً از تمام پاکى ها و شادى هاى دوران کودکيتان ياد کنيد . پسران طبيعت آفتاب ميدانم ديگر نميتوانيد با همکلاسيهايتان بنشينيد ، بخوانيد و بخنديد چون بعد از , مصيبت مرد شدن , تازه , غم نان , گريبان شما را گرفته ، اما يادتان باشد که به شعر ، به آواز ، به ليلاهايتان ، به روياهايتان پشت نکنيد ، به فرزندانتان ياد بدهيد براى سرزمينشان براى امروز و فرداها فرزندى از جنس , شعر و باران , باشند به دست باد و آفتاب ميسپارمتان تا فردايى نه چندان دور درس عشق و صداقت را براى سرزمينمان مترنم شويد .

رفيق ، همبازى و معلم دوران کودکيتان فرزاد کمانگر

– زندان رجايى شهر کرج 9/12/1386

Source: Armman Blog | Referenced by: Mani Irani
  • Balatarin
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    1. this isnt informative??:(


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