Once upon a time there lived a crow which had her nest on the highest branch of a tree in a village ! Children had named it; Mrs. Crow , it always croaked noisily ! But it was strange, there was no croaking any more, what had happened to Mrs. crow?
“One hundred Rubies” is a very popular book in Iran. But why is that? Why a simple poem has captivated the Iranian minds for so long. Rahmandoost, the poet of “One hundred Rubies” recalls the memory of the day he created the poem: [during the seven-year war between Iran and Iraq] we were stuck in our positions for a long while. There was a food shortage due to siege and we couldn’t get any supplies from the support line… after some time we saw one of our own soldiers coming to us with a supply crate. We asked him how he managed to get here, and he told us “not to worry” and that they had “drove the enemy off”. In his crate there was two pomegranates as well. I remember breaking one and as I did that, the seeds dropped everywhere. Suddenly I recalled my mother who had passed away some time ago. She had a ruby necklace. Without really thinking about it, I started singing a verse: “One hundred rubies in perfect harmony, sitting in a row in one place.” I send the poem to Tehran and it was published in Keyhan Bacheha [a former popular magazine for kids]. And it has been famous ever since. Sang into popular songs and imbedded in movies. A poem created in the time of war, reminding us all how beautiful peace, life and nature are.
Do you think a newspaper remains a newspaper forever? Anahita Taymourian’s newspaper could have collected moisture and worn away on the kitchen windowsill, but she does not let that happen… She cherishes her newspaper named Berni, because she understands its messages of friendship and kindness on each line. She makes him into a paper boat that sails over all of the imaginary seas in the world. Berni loves to sail until the day when he learns to fly.
Experienced and talented children’s book author and illustrator Anahita Taymourian has been contributing to the world of children’s books for many years with stories full of colorful art, and beautiful images. She writes the stories for her own picture books, or shall we say rather, that she illustrates her own books. Her expertise in both areas is at once a melodic and visual treat, lovely to see and read. The main character moves from an inner journey into a real journey and then on to flying, and though the narrator seems to lose a part of herself when Berni leaves, she does not stop him from leaving and instead encourages him to go out in search of new experiences. As children read, they can feel the courage of change and growth and know what it is like to say goodbye to a dear friend at the height of friendship and closeness.