Poetry /

Rumi's deevané shō

Part 2

In this second part of the discussion for Rumi's deevāné shō, we go over the first two lines of the poem in detail.

Listen to the full poem
heelat rahā kon āsheghā, deevāné shō deevāné shō
Dear Lovers, it's time to let go of your games. Be crazy… be crazy I say!
حیلَت رَها کُن عاشِقا دیوانِه شو دیوانِه شو
vandar delé ātash darā, parvāné shō parvāné shō
Enter your heart's inferno. Be a moth to the flame.
و اَندَر دِل آتَـــــــــــــــش دَرآ پَروانِه شو پَروانِه شو
ham kheesh rā beegāné kon ham khāné rā veerāné kon
Abandon this loveless society. Vacate your homes of shame.
هَم خویش را بیگانِه کُن هَم خانِه را ویرانِه کُن
vāngah beeyā bā āsheghān ham khāné shō ham khāné shō
Join all of the other lovers. Live with the insane.
وآنگََه بیا با عاشِقان هَم خانِه شو هَم خانِه شو
roo seené rā chon seenehā haft āb shoo az keenehā
Go and wash your heart. Wash your heart of any grudgeful pain.
رو سینِه را چون سینِه ها هَفت آب شو اَز کینِه ها
vāngah sharābé eshgh rā paymāné shō paymāné shō
Do not just drink the wine of the lovers. Be also the chalice that contains.
وآنگََه شرابِ عِشق را پِِیمانِه شو پِیمانِه شو
bāyad ké jomlé jān shavee, tā lāyeghé jānān shavee
Do not just mingle with the Spirit. Allow the Beloved to flow through your veins.
بایَد کِه جُملِه جان شَوی تا لایِق جانان شَوی
garsooyé mastān meeravee mastāné shō mastāné shō
For if approach these drunkards down at the taverns, Go and be drunk.. be drunk I say!
گَر سوی مَستان مى رَوی مَستانِه شو مَستانِه شو


how are you?

Note: In Persian, as in many other languages, there is a formal and an informal way of speaking. We will be covering this in more detail in later lessons. For now, however, chetor-ee is the informal way of asking someone how they are, so it should only be used with people that you are familiar with. hālé shomā chetor-é is the formal expression for ‘how are you.’

Spelling note: In written Persian, words are not capitalized. For this reason, we do not capitalize Persian words written in phonetic English in the guides.


I’m well

Pronunciation tip: kh is one of two unique sounds in the Persian language that is not used in the English language. It should be repeated daily until mastered, as it is essential to successfully speak Persian. Listen to the podcast for more information on how to make the sound.

Persian English
salām hello
chetor-ee how are you?
khoobam I’m well
merci thank you
khayli very
khayli khoobam I’m very well
khoob neestam I’m not well
man me/I
bad neestam I’m not bad
ālee great
chetor-een? how are you? (formal)
hālé shomā chetor-é? how are you? (formal)
hālet chetor-é? how are you? (informal)
khoob-ee? are you well? (informal)
mamnoonam thank you
chetor peesh meeré? how’s it going?
ché khabar? what’s the news? (what’s up?)

Hello and welcome to the second lesson on Rumi’s beautiful poem, ‘deevāné shō.’ In the the first introduction lesson for this poem, I talked to musician Fared Shafinury, and we went over a lot- we learned about the overall meaning of the poem and talked about its musicality. We also talked about the rhythm and the expression of the poem.

In this lesson, I’m going to go over just the very first two lines of the poem, and really go through the individual words and phrases in the first two lines. We’ll go over how to use these words and phrases in everyday conversation, and use them to build your conversational Persian vocabulary. I want to take these lessons nice and slowly so you learn a little bit of the poem at a time. 

When I say a word of phrase of the poem in this lesson, I want you to repeat it out loud with me. And make it a point to start memorizing the sections that we learn as you listen to these lessons. So first, we’re going to listen’ to the first two lines of the poem:

'heelat rahā kon āsheghā, deevāné shō deevāné shō

vandar del ātash darā, parvāné shō parvāné shō'

I want to begin by going over the meaning of ‘deevāné shō,’ and specifically ‘shõ’ since it shows up so much in this poem- even in the next line where we see the phrase ‘parvāné shō’. So ‘deevāné shõ,’ although Fared translated it as ‘be crazy’ in the translation we heard in the last lesson, means something closer to ‘become crazy.’ So the word ‘deevāné’ means ‘crazy’ or ‘mad.’ And ‘shõ’ is short for ‘beshõ,' which is a common word for ‘become,’ and in the second person informal. So it’s commanding- you, informal, become crazy. 

So I’ve also translated this as ‘fall into madness,’ because I feel like that captures the essence of this part of the poem. As you know, it’s impossible to translate something completely- that’s why it’s so good to learn these poems in their original language. 

So let’s repeat this together now- ‘deevāné sho’

(deevāné shõ)

Great. Now let’s go over the first part of this sentence. So heelat


And this is the word for ‘trickery,’ or ‘deception’. Or as Fared translated it, ‘games.’ So ‘games’ with a negative connotation, like ‘tricks.’ heelat


Next, the word ‘raha,’ and this means ‘free.’ raha


and this is also a popular women’s name in Persian. raha


next is kon


and just like ‘shõ’ is short for ‘beshõ,’ ‘kon’ is short for ‘bekon.’ And it’s a command, and it means ‘do,’ and it’s directed to the second person informal just like ‘shō’ is. So you, informal do, is ‘kon.’


So the whole thing together, ‘heelat rahā kon’ means ‘you do free yourself of deception.’ heelat rahā kon.

(heelat rahā kon)

And then he says āsheghā


And this means ‘lovers.' ‘āshegh’ is the word for ‘love,’ and ‘āsheghā’ means ‘those who are in love,’ or ‘lovers.’ āsheghā


And in Persian poetry, ‘āsheghā’ are a whole class of people-- the ‘lovers.’ They are the ones that matter, the ones that love. So, this poet is addressing them, the lovers from this very first line- ‘heelat rahā kon āsheghā,’ meaning ‘free yourselves of deception, lovers.’ Let’s repeat this togehter. heelat rahā kon āsheghā

(heelat rahā kon āsheghā)

And then he says ‘deevāné shō, deevāné shõ,’ so, ‘become mad, become mad.’ Let’s repeat that part together: deevāné shõ, deevāné shõ

(deevāné shõ, deevāné shõ)

So basically, from this very first line, Rumi is saying that once you let go of games, once you let go of this façade, then you can become mad. Which, you know, this idea of madness, or drunkenness comes up a lot in Sufi poetry- it’s not something to run away from, it’s a desired state. Because once you’re actually mad, that’s when you’ve let go of ego, which is another way of saying this concept of letting go of deception, letting go of what’s not real. So becoming real, in a way, is the same as becoming mad. 

So let’s say this full sentence together: heelat rahā kon āsheghā, deevāné shõ, deevāné shō

(heelat rahā kon āsheghā, deevāné shõ, deevāné shō)

All right! Let’s listen to the first two lines again: 

'heelat rahā kon āsheghā, deevāné shō deevāné shō

vandar del ātash darā, parvāné shō parvāné shō'

So again, let’s start with the command in this phrase- parvāné shõ

(parvāné shõ)

So like I said in the last phrase, ‘deevāné shõ,’ ‘shõ’ is short for ‘beshõ,' which is a command. So ‘become,’ and in this case, he says ‘parvāné’


And this is the word for butterfly. So you, informal, become a butterly. ‘parvāné shõ

(parvāné shõ)

So then ‘vandar delé ātash.’ So ‘vandar’ is two words together, ‘va’ and ‘andar.' ‘va’ is the word for ‘and.’ ‘va


and it’s combined with ‘andar,’ so said together it just becomes ‘vandar.’ But ‘andar’ is the word for ‘into.’ ‘andar


and this isn’t a word that’s used in conversation today- it’s more of a formal poetic term. But again, simply means ‘into.’ ‘So’ and ‘into’- ‘vandar


Then we have delé atāsh. ‘ātash’


and this is the word for ‘fire.’ Sometimes in conversation, it becomes ‘ateesh


But same thing- 'ātash,' ‘āteesh.’ ‘del’ is the word for ‘heart.’ 'del'


So ‘delé ātash’- ‘the heart of the fire.’ That ‘é’ sound binds the two together. It’s called an ‘ezafé,’ and it’s the way you denote possession. So ‘the heart of the fire-’ ‘delé ātash’

(delé ātash)

Ok, let’s review the sentence again, it’s ‘vandar del ātash darā.’ So the word ‘darā,' like ‘andar’ is one that is not used in present conversation, and it means ‘go into.’ darā


this isn’t a word used in present-day conversation, it’s another one of those poetic terms.

so ‘vandar delé ātash darā’- so ‘go into the heart of the fire.’ vandar delé ātash darā

(vandar delé ātash darā)

and ‘parvāné shõ parvāne shō’

(parvāné shõ parvāne shō)

So now let’s put these two together, and listen to the full selection:

'heelat rahā kon āsheghā, deevāné shō deevāné shō

vandar del ātash darā, parvāné shō parvāné shō'

Wonderful, and hopefully this time around you understood all the words in this first section. 

So as I said, we want to keep these lessons nice and short, and go through the poem in bite sizes. Because there are some really heavy concepts in this poem, and it’ll be nice to sit with it one phrase at a time. So let’s practice these two lines in full one more time together. I’ll say it once, and then repeat after me:

heelat rahā kon āsheghā, deevāné shō deevāné shō

(heelat rahā kon āsheghā, deevāné shō deevāné shō)

vandar del ātash darā, parvāné shō parvāné shō

(vandar del ātash darā, parvāné shō parvāné shō)

All right, and that’s it for this lesson. Thank you for listening, and I will catch you on the next lesson for Rumi’s deevāné shõ, part 3.


from Leyla