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Father and Son Reading

December 22, 2009

Tags: Majid Naficy, Azad Naficy, Evin Prison, hiphop, spoken word, Iran, Annenberg Beach House

Tonight is the longest night of the year. Mithra will be born in the morning, riding on the chariot of the sun. That I learned from my dear friend Majid Naficy, a poet, who read tonight at the Annenberg Beach Center with his beautiful talented son Azad.

"Azad" means freedom and Azad's father escaped the minions of Khomeini over the mountains of Kurdistan by horseback. His first wife, Ezzat Tabaiyan, was murdered in Evin Prison. In America, to his second wife Esmat, Azad was born. I've seen him over the years, an intense sometimes brooding boy with beautiful dark eyes. I heard him read his first hiphop poem at the memorial for his grandfather, who died in Isfahan. Azad was surrounded by mourning dissidents and he stood and read of his fury: "in sixth grade, my father went blind, and my eyes went grey." His exiled father could not visit the country of his birth, or of his own father's death.

Azad has grown up. He is a beautiful young man with a powerful stage presence. He read his work from memory. He said he was "from a long line of unbelievers,"and that his father was still blind, "but more sighted than me."

The wisdom of the father passing to the son. Mithra arriving by chariot on the longest darkest night of the year.