عنوان مقاله [English]
Modern sonnet refers to a kind of sonnet with a new perspective and modern language which has emerged after the expansion of the modern poetry in the society. Simin Behbahani with works such as A line from speed and of fire, Dasht-e-Arjan, Awindow towards freedom, and one as such… has introduced herself as one of the effortful forerunners of this form of poetry. Regarding the effect of Nimaee poetry on the advent of modern sonnets, answering this question seems necessary that: in which aspects has Behbahani’s modern sonnet been influenced by the suggested Nima’s poetics? Or basically, in what directions Behbahani’s renovation in sonnet has been consistent with Nima’s poetics? It seems that Simin has followed Nima’s poetics in both new perspective and style which are two basics of Nima’s poetics. Regarding this perspective, she had been adherent to poetic individuality, objectivity, socialism and dialogism; and from the view of style, she was interested in the new language, natural expression, descriptive-narrative pattern and harmony for the dynamics of the sonnets. The research method is descriptive-analytic.
Keywords: modern sonnets, Simin Behbahani, modern poetry, Nima’s poetics.
At the end of the return era and in the time of Constitutionalism, when sonnet reached Nima, it was lagging behind the society; so much so that it had its supporters only in the literary gatherings and among the people of knowledge. Although Farokhi Yazdi presented a new type of sonnet called labor sonnet which was in accordance with the current situations of that time, it could not attract Nima to this classical form. According to Nima, sonnet did not have the capability to withstand the modern innovations because, in that limited circle, everything had reached a dead-end. “Writing sonnets requires that the subject does not lose its romance, but the sonnet writer loses one thing if they don’t be more than a sonnet writer in all their life and that is the whole world and the whole nature” (Nima Yushij, 1989: 128). Through Nima’s insistence on proving innovation and renewal in the form of free verse, and criticizing the classical forms of not tolerating the new facilities that “are in the sensible world of people”, the wave of changes overtakes different realms of Persian poetry. One of the movements is related to renewal of sonnet. Poets of this movement “are about to make changes and innovations in terms of both the language as well as the type of expression, type of terminology, images, and most importantly, in terms of the type of attitude to the outside world” (Hussein Pur Chafi, 2005: 55). They try to revive the returned sonnet. Critics of contemporary poetry have mentioned the influence of Nima’s poems on the contemporary poetry. Behbahani’s innovation in the type of sonnet was so much that she was given the title “Nima of sonnet”, but does this title apply to her in reality? Can the elements that Nima determined for renewal of poetry in his poetics be found in the new sonnets of Simin? If the answer is “yes”, which one of these elements has played a more important role?
The applied method in this study is descriptive-analytical. It means a description of some elements of Nima’s poetics and analysis of some samples of Behbahani’s new sonnets according to them. Poetic elements of free verse exist within the writings of Nima: 1. The value of Feelings and Five Articles on Poetry and Drama include ‘Introduction to myth’ (1922) Value of Feelings in the Lives of Artists (1939). 2. About poetry and poetics, they include Prelude to the Soldier’s Family (1925), Two letters (1950), The neighbor’s talks (1939-1955), Definition and Article (1952-1953), 3. Nima’s letters and new sonnets of Simin Behbahani have been published in these collections: A line of speed and fire (1981), Arjhan Moor (1983), An outlet of freedom (1995) and One as if (2000).
Behbahani, in the new sonnets, shares her poetic understanding of the world with her audience. For example, her personal understanding of the phenomenon called “home” can be mentioned. In her perspective, “home” is an onion-like fence (Behbahani, 2014: 524) along with a leady and fatal silence: “which poisonous cloud opened its umbrella again?/the home’s silence became leady, my heart longs for desert” (ibid: 719). The house has no door to outside and its resident is in danger (ibid: 521-522). Sometimes the knock on the door could be good tidings of someone’s coming: “who knocks the house door? That my young-aged heart/ runs to the door from my chest is it you is it you?” (ibid: 808) and hearing of footsteps is an excuse to open the window: “whose footsteps do sounds belong to? Who is passing my alley?/ tell me so I open the door if they have news of love” (ibid: 539). However, in the end, the home becomes the poet’s tomb: “oh the kitchen-born maiden of Khwaja, happy with a hello of Khwaja / this smoky ruin will become your tomb (ibid: 539). “Loneliness” is one of the prominent aspects of Behbahani’s poetical identity. By reading her poems, we find out that she is a lonely poet who has neither found her favorite partner, and nor has become favorite partner of anybody: “I haven’t given my heart to anybody, nobody has given their heart to me to my heart/ like a driftwood on the waves free free free me” (ibid: 668). Her loneliness is blended with a cold and dark silence (ibid: 582) and sometimes wakes her up: “nights of awake sleeping flickering till mornings/ at the silent corner of a room alone alone alone” (ibid: 1803). This loneliness is a cave for her to which no aromatic breeze blows and she has to live out her life (ibid: 743). “Night” is one of the unwelcome phenomena of Behbahani’s poetic world. The night is silent and dark (ibid: 515) with a dense darkness: “night has remained and a dense darkness with night” (ibid: 643). The night is a still pond “the still pond of night where silver passes the fish” (ibid: 660); and it is a barren desert: “when the claw of darkness picked that bright pear/ I felt this barren desert out of mood” (ibid: 947). The night is a tarred halt (ibid: 1079). Sometimes, home, loneliness and night are gathered in a sonnet:
Night is azure and my silence is flame and patience
I stitch a pair of birds on the fineness of loneliness
I stitch a pair of birds, lovers, as I was
With opened red beaks together after singing together
(Behbahani, 2014: 786)
Nimaee poetry and sonnet are linked to one another. However, Nima believes that sonnet is an old and limited framework, writers of new sonnets such as Behbahani showed that sonnet, too, can be new and dynamic. If we take the sonnet of Nima’s period as thesis and Nima’s poetry as antithesis, then, the now sonnet could be named as synthesis. Sonnet of Nima’s period was to express romantic subjects with a repeated and imitative language, but Nimaee poetry was for social and new subjects; Behbahani’s new sonnet was a compound of both of them to express romantic social subjects. Behbahani has shown with her different works that many of the principles of Nima’s poetics apply to sonnets. According to the principle of poetic individuality, in the new sonnets of Behbahani, there is no distance between her and her poetry. She is a society-oriented poet and like Nima talks about the current issues in her society. She follows Nimaee objectivity. Therefore, objective phenomena are very strong in her poetry. Her new prosodic meters are an effort, although a small one, to reach natural expression. Change of tone and application of sounds is another one of the solutions she presents according to the principle of natural expression. She preserves the principle of harmony and maintaining unity in the vertical axis in her sonnet. As Nima expresses a descriptive-narrative pattern for free verse, she presents full-scale examples of narrative and dramatic sonnets in her poetry collections.