Wednesday, December 29, 2010

Racism & Religious Radicalism in Modern Jewry

Racism and Religious Radicalism in Modern Jewry 
Am Yisrael Arevim Zeh LaZeh."
Lulav and Etrog,
a symbol of Sukkot,
 often interpreted as a symbol of the
unity of human beings
amid their diversity
By: Payman Akhlaghi
December 28th, 2010

The following draft appeared first as a Note on Payman's Personal Facebook page, December 28th, 2010, where it has generated a heated debate on discrimination, what's in the best interest of Israel, and other related issues. If you have an FB account, you may wish to follow the FB Thread 1 and FB Thread 2. Send me a message via FB if you encounter any problems viewing the page. The viewpoints expressed therein reflect the individual opinions of their respective authors. Be advised that given the nature of the subject, some comments may be emotionally distressful to the reader.

In an FB response to a report by Jerusalem Post, the Iranian Israeli political analyst, Meir Javedanfar worte, "Racism starts with Arabs, then moves to Russian Jews, then Jews of Arab origin and before we know it the country will fall apart. Like a virus, racism sees no boundaries.This is why we need to fight racism with vigor and determination." (The JP report could be found here.)

His wise remarks brought back some old memories, and brought together some lingering thoughts. It seemed they were worthy of being placed together in a single note.

Pianist Anton Rubinstein once said, "Russians call me German, Germans call me Russian, Jews call me a Christian, Christians a Jew. Pianists call me a composer, composers call me a pianist. The classicists think me a futurist, and the futurists call me a reactionary. My conclusion is that I am neither fish nor fowl – a pitiful individual." [Quote found in Wikipedia; also found in Harold C. Schonberg's "Great Pianists".] One could say, In Iran, you were a Jew; in Israel, you'd be an Iranian, or "Parsi", to be exact!

Saturday, December 18, 2010

"Sometimes, Only a Wink...", Poem by Payman Akhlaghi

LA Clouds by Payman Akhlaghi
February the 4th, 2010, about 5 PM.
A moment not to be missed...‎

Payman’s Public Page on Facebook,‎
ComposerPA (Payman Akhlaghi)‎

Payman’s Personal Page on Facebook
Payman Akhlaghi (Composer ‎پیمان اخلاقی‎)

More of Payman's poetry in
Persian or English at his
Collection of Poetry on Scribd.
Sometimes, Only a Wink... ‎
A Poem by Payman Akhlaghi

Sometimes, it takes
Not decades, but a second;‎
Not a cry, but a whisper;‎
Not running for miles, but moving a muscle;‎
Not writing volumes, but saying a few words;‎
To give someone a warm feel of the world...‎

Sometimes, it takes
Not a storm, but a breeze;‎
Not a sun, but a breath;‎
Not a friend, but a stranger;‎
To break the ice,‎
To flash the smile,‎
To say the kind words...‎

Be that friend,‎
Or that stranger,‎
But move that muscle,‎
And change a world...‎

Payman Akhlaghi
Los Angeles, October 17th, 2010‎

© Copyright: 2010, Payman Akhlaghi. All rights reserved.
First Published on Facbook, October 17th, 2010.
First Published on Scribd on December 17th, 2010.

N.B.: The author is himself a composer. This publication is intended as an introduction to his poetry, and as a preview of his songs in progress. Please read and hopefully enjoy this poem; but you may not set it to music, or print, copy or distribute it – physically, digitally, or through any other means – or use it in any other  form, or for any other purpose, commercial or otherwise. Thank you.

Neruda/Akhlaghi: تو را ساکن می خواهم

تو را ساکن می خواهم
شعری از پابلو نرودا
برگردان فارسی از پیمان اخلاقی

I Like For You To Be Still (1920)
Poema 15. Me gustas cuando callas...
An Original Persian Translation of the Poem Pablo Neruda

تو را ساکن می خواهم
برگردان فارسی از پیمان اخلاقی

تو را ساکن می خواهم، گویی غایبی
آوایم را از دوردست می شنوی
اما صدایم را به لمس تو بختی نیست
گویی چشمانت به لایتناهی پرکشیده اند
چونان که بوسه ای لبانت را مهر کرده باشد
آنک که همه چیز از روح من می آکند
تو نیز سرشار از روح من برمی آیی
تو همسانِ روح منی -- پروانه ای از رؤیا
و به واژۀ "اندوه" می مانی [...]
[لطفاً برای خواندن همۀ شعر اینجا کلیک کنید.]

Kristallnacht (Poem) J Sedaghatfar, Translated by P Akhlaghi

A Synagogue Burning
Krystallnacht, November 9th, 1938
The Night of the Broken Glass

Translation of Poem in Persian by
Jahangir Sedaghatfar

English translation by
Payman Akhlaghi

کریستال ناخت: شب شیشه های شکسته
شعری به زبان پارسی از جهانگیر صداقت فر
برگردان انگلیسی از پیمان اخلاقی

The present poem recounts the horrible events of that nightmare of a night in a quasi-delirious, almost hallucinatory fashion. The brackets designate those moments when the observer pauses the narrative to loudly protest the painful scenes, which are taking place before the eyes.

The Aftermath of Kristallnacht
November 10th, 1938

The Night of the Broken Glass


Watch over the mothers!
Watch over the mother,
Whose fear-poisoned breast
Is feeding bitter milk
Into the mouth of the startled child.
Sacrilege and lunacy
Harden daggers
In the acerbity of blood.]

Watch over the newborns
—These fragile hopes of a better tomorrow;
[Please click on Read More for the entire poem.]

Friday, December 10, 2010

Liszt's Sposalizio vs Debussy's Arabesque No.1 (Paper, 2007)

Imagination, Stasis and Motion
In the Piano Music of Liszt and Debussy
A Discussion of Sposalizio and Arabesque No.1

Années de Pèlerinage, Deuxième année: Italie, No. 1
(“Years of Pilgrimage, Year Two: Italy, No. 1)
Deux Arabesques, No. 1 (1888)

Author: Payman Akhlaghi
Subject: Music Analysis, Comparative Musicology
Submitted: 2007, UCLA, As a Graduate Studies Academic Paper
English, 33 Pages
Published on Scribd: Free to Read.

Excerpt from the introduction:

"Perhaps no two musical oeuvres would leave more distant impressions on the ‎listener than those of Franz Liszt (1811-1886) and Claude Debussy (1862-1918). After ‎all, Liszt is better known for his dazzling bravura than the quiet harmonies of his late ‎period, while the subtlety of taste in almost everything Debussy wrote has made his music ‎stand for all things French.‎

And yet, as implausible it might sound, the two shared enough to make a ‎comparative study of their works meaningful. First, both Liszt and Debussy loved the ‎piano and wrote for it affectionately, enhancing the technical, timbral and expressive ‎potentials of the instrument to its limits. At the same time, unlike their common idol, ‎Frederic Chopin (1810-1849), this affection did not come at the expense of all other that ‎were not piano, as their output embraced orchestral music too with equal dedication.‎