The Musalla Gardens is where the great Persian poet K’aja Sams-al-Din Mohammad Sirazi or later more famously known as Hafiz lays to rest. A tall pillared mosaic ceiling and slender outlying evergreens shade Hafiz’s marble resting place.
The works of Hafiz are influential in modern Persian society with its timeless themes, romantic dreams, and ability is a modern fortune-telling tool for believers. Metaphors and puns fill his works and have double meanings making them the subject of heated scholarly debates. He composed numerous lyrical poems or ghazal and literary works that are full of artful puns and references to love and love lost and virtuous prose reflecting both his muslim faith and hypocrisy he witnessed while being supported by patrons of various ruling dynasties of his day.
Modern Persians still greatly admire Hafiz’s works and even hope they too can memorize the Qur’an at an early age and also be known as “Hafiz” or one who has memorized the entire Qur’an. Many admirers today quote his works and even have made Farsi pronouns out of some of his words.
Hafiz was born either 1317 or 1319 in Shiraz, spent most of his life working for several local regimes, and died in Shiraz. There are many tales of how he lived his life and whether they are true or not us up to the individual. Legend states that he fled to Yazd and Isfahan after falling out of favor with leader Shah Shuia. It is said that he may have mocked other poets including the great leader Shah Shuja and ran for his life. He later must have returned to Shiraz if legend is true. This is where he died and a tomb (the Hafezieh) to honor Hafez lies in the Musalla Gardens. The current mausoleum was designed by a french architect named Andre Godard in 1930.
A visit to the city of rose gardens, nightingales and poets isn’t complete without stopping by the Musalla Gardens in the north of the city and paying homage to Hafiz. To get to know his work is a start to getting to know modern Persia.
The Tomb of Hafiz is one of Shiraz’s most visited shines in all of Iran.
WE HAVE NOT COME TO TAKE PRISONERS
We have not come here to take prisoners,
But to surrender ever more deeply
To freedom and joy.
We have not come into this exquisite world
To hold ourselves hostage from love.
Run my dear,
That may not strengthen
Your precious budding wings.
Run like hell my dear,
From anyone likely
To put a sharp knife
Into the sacred, tender vision
Of your beautiful heart.
We have a duty to befriend
Those aspects of obedience
That stand outside of our house
And shout to our reason
“O please, O please,
Come out and play.”