Persian Literature & The West – I
I was surprised to find an entry on Persian poetry in reclaiming space. I though it might be interesting to make a few posts on the subject. Persian literature has had influences on many writers and cultures outside of its boundaries.
When Goethe became acquainted with Hafez’s Diwan he wrote “Suddenly I came face to face with the celestial perfume of the East and invigorating breeze of Eternity that was being blown from the plains and the wastelands of Persia, and I came to know an extraordinary man whose personality completely fascinated me”.
Fredric Nietzsche says: “0 Hafez thou hast built a tavern of philosophy which is mightier than any other palace in the world, and in it, thou hast prepared a wine full of sweet words that surpasses the power of a world to drink. Who can be the guest in thy tavern but the mythological Simurgh?”
The late Professor Edward G. Browne believes that “the epic, lyric, didactic, mystic, satiric, or pessimist poets of Iran such as Firdowsi, Hafez, Sa’adi, Nasir-Khusrow, Attar, Jallal ad-Din Balkhi (Rumi); Ubayd-i-Zakani, and Omar Khayyam, each in his own different way appeals to some ground common to all mankind“. And these are the ones that are known best, outside Iran. He calls Iranians “the most ancient, gifted and original peoples of the world“… he write elsewhere about “an altogether inadequate judgment of the intellectual activity of that ingenius and talented people.“
I am only quoting!