A brief review of the book "Love Never Dies"

The Biography of Parvin Solgi, the Wife of the Martyred General Mirza Mohammad Solgi

Fereydon Heydari Mulkmian
Translated by: Fazel Shirzad

2022-08-02


The image of a hand and a sparrow on an eye-catching background on the cover conveys a special peace to the heart and eyes of the audience. When we unconsciously pick up the book and turn it over and look at its back cover, with the first two paragraphs of the selected text, we are thrown into the heart of a real story of passion and love, which is tied to the sacred defense:

            "The boy was on the roof. He was wearing a denim shirt and his collar was open up to the second and third buttons.

The first time I looked at him and he looked at me, a sparrow started fluttering in my heart. I could hear my heart. It was as if I had gone up while sitting on a rope and suddenly I was coming down..."

When we go to next the pages of the book, after the dedication letter, we come across the author's introduction, which is arranged in six parts and mentions in detail how the book was formed, from the initial idea of preparation and arrangement of its contents to the time of finishing the book in February 2018. The author even clarifies how she chose the title of the book in the addendum that she writes to this introduction sometime later. Then, one page is dedicated to the handwriting of Mrs. Parvin Solgi, the narrator of the book. She states in this dedication:

"My whole life is full of events, but the biggest event in my life, for which I thank God thousands of times, was the love that happened between me and Mirza and strengthened the foundation of our life against sudden and bitter events. The martyrdom of my brother and father and family, frequent bombings and injuries, and the hardships of life were bearable despite my love and affection for Mirza..."

The next part of the book is the text of the memoirs, and at the end of each chapter, related photos are included. A large number of good quality black and white photographs, along with introductions, are used in the book to complete this biography.

The narrator starts her memories from the fifth grade when she went to Sanai Nahavand School. One day, when she returns from school, she sees her mother Dogal, her grandmother Nane Sherki, Aunt Farangi, Aunt Soghari, and her daughter Eqbale have packed their tents and want to go to their ancestral village. It was during her visit to Dehghanabad that she saw Mirza Mohammad wearing jeans on the roof of a house for the first time, and after that, she felt an unexperienced feeling every time: "... Mirza and I met a few more times and our eyes locked. It was the same feeling again. I was hot. I was afraid that someone would see what was going on in my heart. I both wanted to see it and I didn't want to."

When they returned to Nahavand, Parvin was saddened by the fact that she would no longer see Mirza, which she had to endure for a long time.

But there was another sadness on the way to hurt her and her brother Amir, who was no more than five or six years old: the absence of Dogal, the mother of the house. Dogal had a difficult birth and was still lying on the hospital bed. When she went to see her at the hospital, the skin on her hands was dead and would not come off. In her heart, she was afraid that Dogal would not come home again. When she was discharged from the hospital after six months, they took Dogal to the village to be taken care of by Nane Sherki.

And this is how the first chapter ends.

The second chapter is a review of the narrator's teenage period, which coincides with the beginning of whispers and the formation of the revolution. Parvin was a twelve-thirteen-year-old girl when Haj Hossein Selagi, her mother's uncle, who was a man of grace and knowledge and memorizer of the Quran, was exiled from his city and homeland to Babak Rafsanjan city due to her opposition and struggles with the Pahlavi government. The number of people who came from the villages to the city hoping for a bite of bread was increasing day by day. It was the period of oppression of masters and landlords. Nahavand was not calm like other cities. Every day there were rallies, marches, and demonstrations against the king.

Among her family, her father and older brothers used to go to demonstrations and chant slogans against the Pahlavi government. Every night when they came home, they talked about the events of that day and the presence of the people, and the reaction of the king's servants.

Parvin also wanted to go to the demonstration with them, but her mother was very attentive to her and wanted to be her protector and keep her away from any danger. One of those nights when there was martial law and the sound of Takbir and the sound of gunshots could be heard from the corners of the city, her second brother, Ali, did not come home until they found him lying on the ground with a wounded head and face. He could not speak for a long time. When he was finally able to speak, he said that the Pahlavi's guards had caught him and beaten him.

In the third chapter, they receive a letter addressed to Baba Khodamrad. The letter was written by Mirza. He had said hello and greeted. Baba Khodamarad wanted to reply to the letter as is customary, but since he was not literate himself, he asks his daughter Parvin to take a pen and paper and reply to this favor. He said a few words himself and Parvin wrote the same. Khodamorad took the letter to the post office and mailed it. Mirza wrote another letter. Again, they replied in the same way.

But finally, after a year and a half, Mirza's head was found. His military service was over. He came to their house with his brother and officially proposed to Parvin to her father, and if not on the same day, but after some persistence, he was finally able to get her and her father's consent. The marriage took place at a distance and Mirza took her to his village. After two weeks after their wedding, Mirza left for Tehran to find a job.

In the fourth chapter, the narrator talks about her life in the village: "I was still fifteen years old and confused between childhood and womanhood. I was not a child and I had to realize that I had to fulfill the duties of a wife and daughter-in-law of the family, and on the other hand, becoming a mother was added to it. But being next to Mirza, a man who took responsibility for the family early, and our love for each other warmed my heart."

One cold day in Bahman, when they were sitting next to the chimney the radio was playing the news. They played the revolutionary anthem and announced that the revolution had won. The people of the house all got up and were happily walking in the courtyard and chanting Takbir. He wanted Mirza to be there with them too, but he was in Tehran like most days and Parvin thought to himself what he would do when he heard the news of the victory of the revolution.

The busy month for farmers, September of the following year coincided with the last days of her pregnancy. One day in the evening, he felt pain a lot from childbirth. Mirza took her to Shir and Khurshid hospital in Nahavand. Her first child was a boy. They named him Mustafa.

The fifth chapter begins when Mustafa is six months old when the narrator became aware of her second pregnancy. Mirza usually went to Tehran less often. He was mostly engaged in activities for the fledgling revolution in Nahavand. On the other hand, the fifty-six expiring soldiers who had passed the precautionary period were called to confront and defend the country against the invasion and aggression of the Iraqi Baath army.

Sometime later, she gave birth to her second child. A girl named Zainab. Even though Mirza was present at that time, he could not watch it. The same day, he left his wife and child and returned to the war region.

Since then, Mirza, who was a member of the newly established Nahavand Corps, was always on the front line. Parveen liked the dress that Mirza had worn in the army and it had become more attractive to him than ever. But it also meant that he would be in the war zone most of the time. He came and visited them once every twenty days or a month. But he would go back to the front so that his wife and children wanted to taste his existence. Ever since they moved from the village to Nahavand, when Mirza returned from the front, he was always either with the IRGC or Basij or visiting the families of the martyrs.

Of course, the narrator does not stop being active as he mentions in the sixth chapter: "I went to the base of the Youth Mosque for love of Mirza, maybe I can help the front. The women who could not go to the front were working behind the front. Making pickles and jams, washing dirty clothes and blankets, sewing and weaving warm clothes and baking bread, and other works that were all done with love and faith. I liked there and what they were doing. In the meantime, I met women whose lives were similar to mine or more difficult. I saw patient women who, apart from their wives, their children were at the front, or despite the martyrdom of their loved ones, they are still helping and behind the front."

Iraq continues to attack the western cities of Iran. The planes would turn and drop their bombs on residential areas. The narrator witnessed that every day some martyrs were buried on the shoulders of the people. Sometimes martyrs of enemy bombing and sometimes martyrs who returned from the front line. Some of them were taken to their villages and buried, and some of them rested in Nahavand soil. Every time the news of the funeral of the martyrs came, he held the children's hands and went to their ceremony even if the funeral ceremony was in the villages.

When the martyr's body was placed on people's shoulders, he would put himself in the place of the martyr's mother or sister. It felt like it should be. They should see him and others like him so that the sadness of their youth getting full will decrease; although most of them had calm and patient faces.

The next four chapters (seventh to tenth) are dedicated to the description of Mirza's presence at the front and the activities behind the front, and the narrator talks about various topics: her other births, Mirza's injury, the martyrdom of her cousin Abbas at the front: "Abbas is our first martyr and we were just realizing how the young people are being martyred." And then the martyrdom of his brother Amir, followed by the martyrdom of his father, was under bombardment. The injury and then the disappearance of his cousin Behrouz, Abbas's brother, who was martyred, the injury of Mirza and losing his legs... He was sent to Germany twice for treatment.

When he was sent to Germany and then returned to Iran with artificial legs, Parvin hoped that Mirza's artificial legs would cope with him and understand that their owner is not a person who sleeps in bed or leans on his pillow and listens to the news. It was true. Mirza still went to the IRGC to monitor the situation.

One day a letter arrived for Mirza to get ready to go to the front. As if the world had been given to him, he started training to be able to walk without a crutch.

At the same time, they ordered that Nahavand become the commander of the army. He had returned to the area with some of his old comrades in a Toyota that had been his crutch for some time. He missed it when the news of the adoption of Resolution 598 spread everywhere.

The 11th to 16th chapters include the memories after the war: "The children had grown up and Mirza had become the commander of the Nahavand Corps... Mirza's presence and the peace I had found made my presence in Basij stronger. I took the small children with me and participated in various meetings and military and ideological training classes. I felt good. I wanted Mirza to be proud of me and in his mind to be the strong woman he always called me.

The last chapter describes the breakdown of Mirza's condition and his admission to the hospital, and finally his martyrdom and ascension. When Mirza's body was taken by ambulance to Golzar-e-Shahada in Nahavand and buried, Parvin could hardly believe that Mirza was martyred and gone. "All the martyrs' graves were revolving around me... I was calling Mirza. I was looking for his hands to hold my hand and for his voice to calm me down and say that the love between us will never die..."

The first edition of the book "Love Never Dies", written by Mona Eskandari, was published in 2021 by Surah Mehr Publications in 300 pages and 1250 copies at 70,000 Toman(Iranian currency) in a regular cover and octave format to the book market.



 
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