Len Bracken releases his adaptation of Omar Khayyam's poetry, which he calls Persian Love, as a challenge to citizens in the United States and Iran to value the finer aspects of life over war—wine and food, beauty and truth.
Of the estimated one thousand verses written by Khayyam, the eleventh century mathematician and astronomer from Nishapur, Bracken has arranged sixty-nine passages that draw on translations from several languages and personal inspiration.
"This adaptation was originally recorded over music, so the words should roll easily off the tongue and be immediately comprehensible," Bracken says.
While cautioning readers not to misinterpret the new title as taking an idealistic view on love, Bracken insists that this noble sentiment exists between American and Persian peoples at the level of human spirit.
"Everyone who waters the plant of love never wastes their lives," Khayyam writes, adding, "And that's so if they submit to the will of god or if they simply desire physical pleasure and raise the glass."
While war represents a waste of life, Bracken says we could instead be happy as Khayyam writes in a stanza used in the film Unfaithful: "Be happy for a moment, that moment's your life."
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Len Bracken, Post Office Box 5585, Arlington, VA 22205