Keeping Time With Blue Hyacinths
a poem in seven movements   by Sholeh Wolpé
Los Angeles County Museum of Art


Washington DC


Poems and Translations

At Brookdale College, New Jersey, USA  2017


VWS Studio 17 TV interview
Michael Broak interviews Sholeh Wolpé about her work as a poet, writer and translator.

POETRY LA Interview Series
Mariano Zaro Interviews Sholeh Wolpé about her work as a poet and literary translator


Sholeh Wolpé reads her poems

accompanied by renowned tar player, Sahba Motallebi



Walt Whitman in Persian and English

Translated by Sholeh Wolpé and Mohsen Emadi


Translating Whitman

Sholeh Wolpé talks about the process of translation to students at Chapman University

I Was Sung Into This World

Poem by Sholeh Wolpé



Poems of Forugh Farrokhzad, the rebel poet of Iran

from: Sin–Selected Poems of Forugh Farrokhzad



Rhyme By Rhyme

By 19th Century Iranian poet, Tahirih

Translated and performed by Sholeh Wolpé




Sholeh Wolpé speaking at Hammer Museum




Mamak Khadem’s Music Video of I AM Neda, by Sholeh Wolpé








2010  Lois Roth Persian Translation Prize Awarded to Sholeh Wolpé



I See The Sea 

Sholeh Wolpé reads her translation of Sham Langeroodi

accompanied by Sahba Motallebi



I Was Sung Into This World  by Sholeh Wolpé

Levantine Cultural Center, Los Angeles

Music:  Sahba Motallebi



Sholeh Wolpé with Sheida Mohammadi at the LA Times Festival of Books

Presenting poems from The Forbidden, Poems from Iran and Its Exiles

Sheida reads her poem in Persian, Sholeh follows with the translation



























“I Am Neda”   Lyrics: Sholeh Wolpé   Music: Mamak Khadem


“Effervescence”   Lyrics: Sholeh Wolpé  Music: Chris Gordon  Vocal: Ingrid James
Band: San Gabriel 7
CD: Lost My Heart (

San Gabriel 7 Promo:


“From Green to Green”  Lyrics by Sholeh Wolpé based on her translation of a poem by Sohrab Sepehri    Music: Mamak Khadem   Album: A Window To Color                            






All photographs on this page are subject to copyright, Sholeh Wolpe

Charcoal on paper by Sholeh Wolpe copyright 2014



















Minolta DSC

Minolta DSC

Minolta DSC





















































World Literature Today –– Sholeh Wolpe reads her translation of Forugh Farrokhzad’s “Reborn”


ALOUD SERIES of Los Angeles Public Library presents a reading from Tablet & Pen, Literary Landscapes from the Modern Middle East  with Reza Aslan, Sholeh Wolpe, Howard Gordon, Amy Bender, Necar Zadegan, Heather Gram, Gideon Diego


qarrtsiluni  a literary magazine — Sholeh Wolpe reads her translations of three modern Iranian poets: Sham Langeroodi, Sheida Mohammadi, and Mohsen Emadi


WPR Public Radio —  Here on Earth — Reza Aslan (editor) and Sholeh Wolpe (regional editor) speak about their anthology, Tablet & Pen


KUSP Poetry Show — July 19,2011  poems from Sholeh’s first book, The Scar Saloon



Visiting Writers Series — Brookdale TV

Poetry LA — Interview Series

Words Without Borders — Translator’s Relay

Terrain Journal — In-depth Interview with Sholeh Wolpe

International Program at the University of Iowa –The Same Gate: A Poetic Exchange

Words With Writers — Marissa Bell Toffoli interviews Sholeh Wolpé

Association of Writers Programs  — Sholeh Wolpé in spotlight

Pulse Berlin —  Interview with Sholeh Wolpé  — Persis Karim interviews Sholeh Wolpé about Forugh Farrokhzad


Review on The Conference of the Birds on Lithub 

Sholeh’s Wolpe’s essay “Unveiling of Self” on Prairie Schooner’s Women and the Global Imagination

PEN America’s post about Sholeh Wolpé’s translations of Attar —PEN America

Sholeh Wolpé is awarded  2014 PEN/Heim Translation Fund award — PEN America

Review of Keeping Time With Blue Hyacinths –Shelf Awareness Magazine

Review of Breaking the Jaws of Silence — World Literature Today

The Wisdom of Sholeh Wolpé–Georgia Southern University

Review of Breaking the Jaws of SilenceHoffington Post

Review of Sin: Selected Poems of Forugh FarrokhzadAmerican Poet

Review of Sin: Selected Poems of Forugh FarrokhzadCitiscapes

Review of The Forbidden- Poems from Iran and Its ExilesSpillway

Reading Forugh Farrokhzad –The Daily Star Lebanon

Sin awarded Lois Roth Prize —UOA NewsWire

Sexy, mischievous and Middle Eastern –UT San Diego News

The Tortured Face of Iran, Review of The Forbidden –The Wichita Eagle

Sholeh Wolpe at Writers Festival in  Whittier College —The Quantum Poet

Actors and artists bring words to life —PressEnterprize

Translation brings to life poetry of Courageous  Iranian Women —Santa Fe New Mexican

Beautiful and Terrifying —Morning River

Review of The Scar Saloon by Elean Karina Byrne — Ruskin Art Club

Review of The Scar Saloon by Joe Benevento —Green Hills Literary Review

On hearing Sholeh Wolpé read —Casa Romantica


“In a world where cultures and religions are recklessly facing off, Sholeh Wolpé writes careful poems that cast a light on some of what we all hold in common.”  –Billy Collins


“Sholeh Wolpé’s poems are political, satirical, and unflinching in the face of war, tyranny and loss. Talismanic and alchemical, they attempt to transmute experience into the magic of the imagined. But they also dare to be tender and funny lyrical moments.”  –Chris Abani


“Sholeh Wolpé is clearly a poet of the world. ”  –Charles Harper Webb


“When Sholeh Wolpé asks ‘How hard is it to write a long song?’ she is reflecting on beauty and love in times of war and personal upheaval. She is reflecting on poetry’s absurd covenant with pain, loss, and violence–and its promise to find beauty through these human horrors. Her beautiful poems are at once sensual, meditative, raw in their honesty, and judicious in their fit use of language. This collection delights and disturbs, often in the very same poem.”  –Kwame Dawes


“Sholeh Wolpé provides generous service in showing readers the different ways that poets commit to their own voices as they call out The Deadly Silencer, sounding off in a world that does not listen, indifferent to their commitment.”  –Carol Muske-Dukes


“Wolpe’s poems are at once humorous, sad and sexy, which is to say that they are capriciously human, human even in that they dream of wings and are always threatening to take flight.”  –Tony Barnstone


“Like dreams peopled with healing clues, Wolpé’s poems are rich with surrealism and harmony, telling deep truths of women across cultures and languages.”  –Annie Finch


“A gifted Iranian-American poet beautifully explores love and the loss of love, beauty and war and the ghosts of the past.”  –Shelf Awareness Magazine

“(Wolpé’s)  aversion to oppression and her ability to juxtapose the dark and wondrous are reflected in this anthology (Breaking The Jaws of Silence) and also in her dedication to PEN Center USA. PEN International is dedicated to human rights and campaigns on behalf of writers who have been censored and imprisoned around the world. This poetry responds by bearing witness to oppression.”  –World Literature Today


“Sholeh Wolpé poetry proves to be rumination, prayer, song.”  –Nathalie Handal


 Her new book  “confirms the positive reaction that I have had to Sholeh Wolpé’s work–the irrepressible originality, the insouciant wit, the occasional stabs of pain, the fearless honesty, the instant evocation of a time and a place are all here in an enjoyable and endearing mix.”  –Amin Banani


“Sholeh Wolpé, a poet and artist in her own right, Iranian-born and cosmopolitan, is a daughter of the freedom made possible by poets like Farrokhzad. Her translations are hypnotic in their beauty and force.”  –Alicia Ostriker


“One of the great virtues of Sholeh Wolpe’s introduction to The Forbidden, and anthology of poems by Iranians and exiles from the country, is that it clearly explains why “the Colonel” is banned in Iran, and why all Dowlatabadi’s other works still smack of subversion to the Islamic authorities.”  –Wichita Eagle


“Farrokhzad wrote five poetry books, and a sixth book of hers was published posthumously. There have been other translations into English, but this one by the Iranian-American poet Sholeh Wolpe is the best I have encountered. The translations are precise, but also fluid and quite beautiful. She pulls poems from all of Forugh’s work. The volume is a fantastic introduction to her work for a non-Iranian reader.”   –Jasmin Darznik on Modern Iran


“Sholeh Wolpé’s exquisite poetic voice and her superb command of the art of translation meld together in translations that exude the passion, defiance.” –Nasrin Rahimieh


“Sholeh Wolpé’s selection of poems and the lush lucidity of her translation convey the quickly evolving and the richly paradoxical nature of Farrokhzad’s poetry.”  –Farzaneh Milani


“Sholeh Wolpe’s My Brother at the Canadian Border explores racial profiling at a border crossing with biting humor and a somewhat bittersweet resolution.”   –Roger Jacobs  PopMatters


“Wolpé’s second collection of poetry, Rooftops of Tehran, is a collection of poems strung together like a black pearl necklace, the sheen of each dark sphere reflecting the world as seen through the eyes of a young girl growing up in Iran and later immigrating to and living in three different cultures and societies. The perspective is clearly that of a girl and later, a woman, desperately flapping her wings to seek what freedom she imagines the world outside her culture has to offer, and finding that her struggle against sexism and racism are ultimately universal.”    –Red Hen Press

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