I have this gem and it’s looking for a beholder
Hafiz of Shiraz (also known as Hafez) remains the most beloved name in all of Persian literature. Indeed, his mystic, lyric poetry is cherished as one of the great achievements of world literature, on a par with Dante, Goethe, and Shakespeare.
Hafiz’s Little Book of Life is a lush collection of more than 250 selections from his lifework. Also included is a vivid portrait of his life and times, translators’ notes, an extensive glossary, a bibliography, and an appendix on Hafiz as an oracle. Here are classic soaring flights of fancy and solid life lessons—made new by two award-winning translators.
This is the perfect introduction to Hafiz for all lovers of poetry and seekers of love, spirituality, and wisdom. Let the unforgettable words of Hafiz shine through you with their love, profundity, wit, and celebration of life.
“This is translation as a real ‘carrying-across,’ as art, not artifact . . . this one drops the reader/listener directly into their own soul-struggle. Immerse yourself and be transformed!” —Neil Douglas-Klotz, author of The Sufi Book of Life and A Little Book of Sufi Stories
“From the first page, you are invited to settle into a sublime sanctuary and partake in enchantment until you feel the Beloved inside your beating heart and running through your veins.” —Ari Honarvar, author of A Girl Called Rumi
About the Author
Hafiz of Shiraz (also known as Hafez) remains the most beloved name in all of Persian literature. Indeed, his mystic, lyric poetry is cherished as one of the great achievements of world literature, on a par with Dante, Goethe, and Shakespeare. Where Rumi dives deep, Hafiz’s vision is as multifaceted as life itself: beyond literature, philosophy, and spirituality, he is truly a force of nature.
Erfan Mojib was born in the desert town of Yazd in central Iran. He holds a degree in comparative literature from UM Malaysia and an MFA in creative writing from the University of New Brunswick, Canada. He has published a number of translated works of fiction including Reza Ghassemi’s The Spell Chanted by Lambs, Simon Van Booy’s Love Begins in Winter and The Illusion of Separateness, Gene Bell-Villada’s García Márquez: The Man and His Work, Julian Barnes’s Flaubert’s Parrot, and Jeanette Winterson’s The Passion. He is the recipient of the Tehran School of Art Short Story Award and the David Walker Prize for Creative Writing. Visit ErfanMojib.com for more information.
Gary Gach has cotranslated three books of poetry from Korean by Ko Un: Flowers of a Moment, BOA / Lannan Translation Series (Northern California Book Award for Translation); Ten Thousand Lives, and Songs for Tomorrow. His anthology What Book!?—Buddha Poems from Beat to Hiphop, (Parallax Press) received an American Book Award from Before Columbus Foundation. He’s also author of The Complete Idiot’s Guide to Buddhism and Pause, Breathe, Smile. Visit GaryGach.com for more information.
“Hafiz’s poetry aims to close the gap between mortal humans and the divine and this book opens a door to the poet’s gardens. From the first page, you are invited to settle into a sublime sanctuary and partake in enchantment until you feel the Beloved inside your beating heart and running through your veins.”
—From the Foreword by Ari Honarvar, author of A Girl Called Rumi
“Delicate and tough, a crafted danger, full of wit as well as abandon, Hafiz’s lyric is one of the rare mysteries of world literature.”
—Coleman Barks, author and translator of The Essential Rumi and What Wants to Come Through Me Now
“A radical collaboration between a Persian and American, this is a breakthrough version of the most untranslatable classical Sufi poet. Gach and Mojib have carved genuine gems from Hafiz’s Persian and set them in a bezel composed of space, time, and the reader’s own openness to wisdom. This is translation as a real ‘carrying-across,’ as art not artifact. While previous translations attempted to be reenactments (like reenacting an old battle in faux costumes), this one drops the reader/listener directly into their own soul-struggle. Immerse yourself and be transformed!”
—Neil Douglas-Klotz, author of The Sufi Book of Life and A Little Book of Sufi Stories
“How to translate into English what, until now, has justifiably been called the ‘untranslatable’ Persian verses of Hafiz? From its epigraph onward, Erfan Mojib and Gary Gach have given us the answer. Hafiz’s Little Book of Life breathes new life into the world of the Sufi poet’s 14th-century words, making those words new again.”
—Stephen Ratcliffe, author Conversation and Listening to Reading
“This supreme poet, who is called ‘Tongue of the Invisible’ (Lisan al-ghayb), produced poems of magic beauty, poems whose imagery and music transmute the lead of the forgetful soul to the gold of the soul which lives in the longing for its Beloved and in the remembrance of that union which predates man’s terrestrial journey. Hafiz was himself aware that his was not simply a human voice. Rather, his poetry was a celestial song which brought the heavens themselves into a state of ecstasy.”
—Seyyed Hossein Nasr, editor The Study Quran, author Science & Civilization in Islam; Knowledge & the Sacred; and The Garden of Truth
“Working from adaptations by acclaimed filmmaker Abbas Kiarostami, Erfan Mojib and Gary Gach have delivered a groundbreaking tour de force version of an iconic classical text—bold and bracing and brilliant. Unlocking Hafiz’s timeless wisdom and dazzling lyricism for our contemporary age, these bite-sized texts seem to answer one of their own urgent calls to action. Step right in—multiple, thrilling gardens in bloom await!”
—Lee Yew Leong, editor-in-chief and poetry editor, Asymptote
“This is a great book of poetry. The prose introductory materials by Mojib place the poet neatly in both the Persia of the 1300s and the present living cultural tradition of the Mideast. The poetry translations show how much Hafiz deserves to be alive in another language so long after these poems were written, and these translations into American English are miracles in themselves.”
—J. P. Seaton, translator The Poetry of Zen and Wine of Endless Life