The great poets of the Persian nation have been a source of inspiration for many a creative soul, each of them – Rumi, Sa’adi, Hafez, Attar of Nashapour et al, possess a lyrical majesty, always with intense philosophy weaved into the simplest of words.
In his latest project Microtone, Fared Shafinury has explored the works of many of these men of letters, these titans of poetic aesthetics, indeed throughout his life as a musician, Fared has explored and been inspired by the richly brocaded poetry of Persian culture.
In Microtone, we see the inspirations have come from a broad sweep of these poets. A project that is, in part, one of literary interpretations, the brevity of Microtone as a tool to bring the words of Persia’s poetic legends to a broader audience is exceptional.
Fared’s interpretations are yet another arm of his delicate and refined creative zeal. In Microtone we see the concepts of mathematics and the universe structure each of these translations, they speak of the heavens and the earth, the subtle nuances of the day to day and the raging passion of the humble human being.
In Persian classical music, poetry and sound have gone hand-in-hand for centuries, from the various opulent courts of Shah’s to the humble homes of the weavers and the pottery makers. Persian poetry itself is a wondrous creation of philosophy and heartfelt emotion, the sternest of thoughts can be made accessible by the Persian language, so rich as it is.
One such poem in Microtone is ‘Crepusculum / Twighlight’, inspired by Rumi it may possibly be, but it is not from the great man’s pen, no, the poet is unknown, lost in time, but its words are harsh on the surface, but it’s meaning offers something deep.
I have arrived, intoxicated and high. I have come to shatter all the bottles of wine and
all the chalices of this tavern, I swear to you and I, that I will crack open the skull of
that cupbearer and his minstrel, and I shall break open wide both of their minds, and
if somehow a staff should appear in my hand, I’ll command its magic to burn the cruel
pharaoh that rules this land, and if a club would fall into my grip, I will swing with brute
force to destroy all these false idols, quickly and violently to the very end. I have come
the most drunk that I have ever been today and I advise all to get out of my way. I shall
burn down the church. I shall burn down the mosque. I shall burn down the temple.
I shall burn down the shrine. I shall pull out the good king’s sword and cut off the evil
king’s head, and if even the stars above choose to wink at me with bad intent, I will bite
off the ears of their night sky. If anyone here attempts to taunt me the least bit, now in
my most drunken state, I shall punch in all the teeth of all the smirking planets and stars
from above and below. Mark my words, for I am that strong willed bird of immense
flight, that soars from it’s nest to the highest sky. I shall break and crack the wings of
those vultures circling above our heads. I have flown up so high that I have travelled
through the seven dimensions with one flap of my wings, and if I strike the earth with
my feet, I shall break open myself into infinite circles, as I twist and turn like a snake
coiling onto itself. Oh Shams, you may tell me to slow down, but I surely can not. Your
love has pushed me over that final edge. I will break, shatter, tear, and burn down this entire existence.
Fared’s holistic interpretation has brought forward unflinching rawness, a glaring, unapologetic display of emotion. In ‘Crepusculum’ we have reached the days end, a time when either fire rises from the belly or the body slips into a dream like state. In this interpretation, it is the fierce raws of a man bursting with frantic spiritual abandon.
Penned by Ben Mirza