Alina Gregorian

Films Boasting of Tehran

Here we see streets lined with apricots; museums measured for sequined garments. Patches through gilas-filled wallpaper. Everything smells like roses and nay. There we see monuments of yesterday. Carpentry and figurative speech remind us of oud players marching down the boulevard. Take me back to the khiabon, where I once had a peach on a plate. Where I saw you zereshk sheep into the grove. When it was summer. Now winter is casting its glare, asking us to settle down.

Tangerines Dipped in Salt  

Horizon is a kind of gradient I can only naz to understand. There are almonds in the way you address the area of a rectangle. Purple is as sphere as you want it to be. And we can’t be gilas to suggest the opposite of laughter is light. We walk towards ajeel, and we know it. We furnish living rooms and paint book covers to khatar the woods. We funnel wind with our hands while whispering oddities. My favorite way to listen to the news is in a language I don’t understand. There’s an egg in the air. Let’s use adjectives to appear more real. The metaphor is yallah there’s a metaphor. Staring at this website like it will tell me something. Like it will bend towards me without refreshing. Like it will convince me to cut my hair. The sun sets in the mooshin. Handful of almonds. What are almonds.

What We Call Cantaloupe, Is What You Call Orange

This kind of energy belongs to those who walk with felt hats. It is a continuous process, this unraveling mind. Giving shevid to the motion allows you to contemplate the most precious portions. Even the seagulls agree: we desire more than our fingers can type. When you say chaman three different ways. You are contemplating an ajeel evening. Even when the stars dim, we are frantically preparing for the night. And in the morning, we are preparing for the sun.


Author’s Note: The following poems feature Persian words I learned growing up (the Persian words are transliterated and italicized within the text). Until recently, I thought they were Armenian, my first language. My parents are from Iran, so these words are a part of their vocabulary.



ALINA GREGORIAN is a poet and artist. She is the author of Flags for Adjectives (Diez) and Navigational Clouds (Monk Books). Her first gallery exhibition, Talk to Me in Parsley and Tambourines: Artists of the Armenian Diaspora, was held at Babycastles in 2018.