Oh if a man could crawl out of here
as a snake or lizard, and go — no!
and take flight, fly
to a place where the world no longer resembles a dirty rumor
a place where the scorched feast of sand
To be alone without
even hands or feet, without head, without cock
to be . . .
And the sea wash him constantly
like the luminous presence of a stone, smooth
the sea wash him constantly
— Reza Baraheni
An Azerbaijani Turk from Iran, Reza Baraheni was imprisoned, tortured, and kept in solitary confinement by both the Shah’s regime and the Islamic Republic of Iran.