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Ahmadi: Poet of Solitude

The prominent Iranian poet, Ahmad Reza Ahmadi, was born in Kerman in 1940 and, almost accidentally, moved with his family to Tehran at the age of seven. He was accompanying his father who went to Tehran for an eye operation and then decided to stay there. He refers to his early years in Tehran as ‘those terrible, cold, lonely days’. But it was during his secondary education at the famous Darolfonoon School that his gift for poetry began to blossom and he forged lifetime friendships with several other budding talents who later became well-known figures in the arts, literature, music and cinema.

Ahmadi is famous for creating a novel style and language that were very controversial and prompted strong criticism from literary critics and followers of traditional Persian poetry. He laid the foundations for the New Wave, which had a strong and lasting effect on free verse. He believes that he should never sacrifice a word for the sake of the rhythm, and that if he has to choose, he would rather abandon the rhythm.
His poetry is deep in meaning and rich in the quality of its craftsmanship, but he is a free spirit. Whilst appreciating the works of the pioneers of modern poetry such as Nima and Shamlou, he never blindly followed in their footsteps, nor in those of any other poet.   

He has so far published 23 volumes of his poetry, 30 books for children, and is currently working on the publication of his complete works amounting to some 4000 pages. He is also interested in music which was part of his earlier activities in the Children’s Intellectual Development Centre of Iran and resulted in the production of 200 music cassettes.

In this multimedia report, Ahmadi talks about his childhood, his work both in the past and today, and his thoughts about life.

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