Rahi Mo'ayyeri

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The celebrated poet is buried in northern Tehran
Rahi Mo'ayeri's tomb is enclosed by a glass case at Darband, Shemiran, Tehran.
Rahi Mo'ayeri's tomb is adorned with his poetry.

Rahi Mo'ayyeri ( رهی معیری in Persian) ( April 30, 1909 to November 15, 1968) was a famous Iranian poet and musician.

He was born into an artistic and musical family on April 30, 1909 in Tehran. His uncle was the famous Qajar Era poet Foroughi Bastami. He began to write poetry when he was seventeen years old and chose Rahi as his pen name. He showed talent from an early age and wrote the famous "Shod Khazan" at the age of 12-13.[citation needed] Rahi studied the works of all the great masters of Persian literature, but was especially fond of Saadi, whose influence is readily visible in his poetry. In addition to qazals, he also wrote some masnavis.[citation needed] Rahi was a composer as well as a poet. His poetry combines beautiful imagery, eloquence, and delicacy of expression.[citation needed] These qualities and his deep understanding of Persian music made him the poet of choice for many Iranian composers of his time.[citation needed] Rouhollah Khaleghi and Rahi met in 1941, and from this point on, Rahi wrote the lyrics for most of Khaleghi’s compositions as well as those of Morteza Mahjoubi, Ali Tajvidi, Hossein Yahaqqi, Moussa Maroufi, and Javad Maroufi. Rouhollah Khaleghi said that he was especially impressed with Rahi’s ability to fit words to music. Rahi’s poems have been published in Saye-ye Omr Sayeh Omr (سايه عمر in Persian) (translated "The Shadow of Life") (1964), Azadeh (1974), and Javdaneh Rahi (1984). Rahi had a deep friendship with Mr. Davood Pirnia (the founder of Golha Program) and due to that friendship he did a lot of work with Morteza khan Mahjoubi in the Golha Programs. Some[who?] believe that the late 1950s and 1960s were the golden age of Persian music. After the resignation of Mr. Pirnia, Rahi agreed to run the Golha Program and continued to do so up until his illness. He was known as a very well dressed man with stunning green eyes.[citation needed] He never married. The former Shah's mother and the late Shah were fans of Rahi Mo'ayyeri's work and because of that he was influential in the Pahlavi regime.[citation needed] He was a very selfless man and did not even want to publish his book.[citation needed] He always said that his poems will not compare to the old masters.[citation needed] He also wrote many comic poems under many pen names.[citation needed] One of his last works was Golhayeh Rangarang #470 that was sung by the Late Haydeh with music by the late Master Tajvidi (Some[who?] claim that this is the song that made Haydeh famous).

In style, according to Iraj Bashiri, Mo'ayyeri is influenced by Sa'di.[citation needed] Bashiri also thinks Helali, Forughi Bastami, and Mu'tamid al-Daula Nishat served as models of simplicity in diction for him.[citation needed] "The Noose of Fate" and "Restive Flowers" are very good representatives of Mo'ayyeri's maturity in theme and simplicity.[citation needed]

The Noose of Fate
Written by:
Rahi Mo'ayeri
Translated by
Iraj Bashiri
A gentle fellow,
An ordinary Arab;
Walked by the Tigris,
On a day hot and drab.
There a fierce lion,
He suddenly saw,
And climbed a tree,
With his nerves all raw.
When he looked above,
His dread increased;
A slumbering boa,
His nerves further teased.
His head swam,
Every look he took;
With the lion below,
All hope him forsook.
He could not ascend,
For fear of the snake;
Nor could he descend,
And his escape make.
He threw himself,
Into the river below;
To the lion and the boa,
He said, "Adieu!"
From the air, ere
Touching the water;
He glimpsed an animal,
Move to that quarter.
Saved from two dangers,
Immune he was not;
From the Decree of Fate,
Which him carefully sought.
Of two dangers though saved,
The good-natured elf;
From the lethal third,
He could not rid himself.
He escaped, he thought,
The lion and the snake;
Alas that his lot,
A different turn did take.
When Time so decrees
All can be lost;
Poverty and misery,
Recognize no cost.
You're but a small morsel,
Large is the mouth of death;
You're but a small bird,
Caught in Chance's lethal breath.
Were you the sun,
Deep set in the firmament;
Fate would capture you,
Were it for you sent.[1]

His book Sayeh Omr (سايه عمر in Persian) (translated "The Shadow of Life") of poems was printed in 1964.

He died on November 15, 1968 in Tehran. The shah of Iran and his entire court attended the funeral services at the Sepasalar Mosque.[citation needed] He is buried in the Zahir o-dowleh cemetery in the northern parts of Tehran.

He was the son of Mohammad Hassan Khan Mo'ayeri.[citation needed]


  1. ^ Bashiri, Iraj. "The Noose of Fate". Life of Rahi Mo'ayyeri. Working Papers on Iran and Central Asia. 

See also[edit]