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Mehdi Akhavan-sales (Razavi Khorasan)

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Mehdi Akhavan-sales is a renowned Iranian poet who was born in Mashhad in 1307 AH. He finished his elementary and high school in Mashhad. He studied smiting in school and began working as a smith. He later moved to Tehran, and became a teacher. He met Nima Yushij and became one of the most famous poets who followed him.

Akhavan-sales spent an eventful life as an Iranian. That is why almost all of his poems have a political and social side to them. From 1320 SH to 28 Mordad 1332 SH he became a passionate member of National Front. The defeat of this formation during the Coup of 28 Mordad destroyed the hopes of intellectual but resulted in some of the most remembering poems of Persian Literature.

Akhavan-sales became a serious fan of Mossadegh, followed the National Front and wrote poems about hope, joy, fight against evil and injustice. Following the defeat of the National Front, he was imprisoned for supporting Mossadegh. All of these traumas led to two masterpieces of Akhavan-sales, Akhar-e Shahnameh (The End of Shahnameh) and Zemestan (The Winter).

This is one of his poems “Thrusting their heads in their collars, they won’t greet you back / No head is raised to greet and meet friends. As the road is dark and slippery, these eyes could hardly see / If you stretch your hands in affection, towards someone. As it is freezing cold … They won’t greet you back. The weather is dismal, the doors are closed, the heads thrust in collars, hidden. The breath is cold, the hearts are heavy. The trees crystalline skeletons, the earth is dead-hearted, the sky’s vault, low. The moon and the sun are lazy. It’s winter.” After the Coup of 28 Mordad, he left politics. He wrote his poems under the name of M. Omid (meaning hope). According to the critics, the image he paints through his poems is a kind of prophecy. He is found of the history of Iran, which sometimes leads to almost racism. He says about this “I am interested in the past and history of Iran. I am obsessed with justice. Anyone who knows about Ghafieh (rhyme) is obsessed with justice.

Ghafieh is two plates of a scale seeking justice.” Akhavan-sales is most skillful when it comes to his epic poems. He has written and published many books during his professional life. Some of them are Arghanun, Zemestan, Akhar-e Shahnameh, Az In Avesta, Zendegi Miguyad, Ama Baz Bayad Zist, Dar Hayat-e Kuchake Payiz Dar Zendan, To Ra Ey Kohan Boom o Bar Dust Daram. Mehdi Akhavan-sales passed away in 1369 AH. He was buried in Tous next to the tomb of Ferdowsi.

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