From Death…

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I have never feared death     Even though    Its hands were more fragile    Than banality.

I dread, however, to die    In a land where    The grave digger’s wages    Exceed the price of human freedom.

Looking for,    Discovering,    Choosing freely,    And transforming one’s essence    Into a fortress.

If the price of death is higher than than all that,    I deny, in absolute terms,    To have ever feared death.

Ahmad Shamlu