Khaijamin lauluja (”Songs of Khayyam”) is a new translation into Finnish of 125 quatrains (or songs, tarane) of the Persian poet, Omar Khayyam (1048-1123). The translation, published by ntamo in September 2009, is a collaboration between the Iranian-born poet and cultural productor, Kiamars Baghbani and the Finnish poet Leevi Lehto. The book incorporates all the tarane in the edition by Iranian modernist poet, Ahmad Shamlu, from 1977 – poems that can most plausibly be attributed to the historical Khayyam, a remarkable scientist, philosopher, and poet.

Khaijamin lauluja
is the first translation of Khayyam into Finnish to be made directly from the Persian language originals. It may be the first Western translation ever to attempt at implementing the original, syllable-based Persian metrics in a target language. It certainly is the first in its kind in that the Finnish versions often come close to being  sound-translations as well.

Khaijamin lauluja is entirely bilingual (Persian-Finnish), includes prefaces by both translators, and comes complete with an audio/video disc, with readings by the translators of all 125 tarane both in poem per poem and line per line formats. The disc also features video recordings of the translators’ reading in Helsinki, Sept. 12, 2009, and a dance performance by Saara Lehto, in her own choreography, to Khayyam poems to the tunes of South-Iranian ”Bandari” music – with Leevi Lehto ”singing” the poems in Finnish.

Cover and other art in the book is by Iranian-Finnish artist, Maryam Mohammadi Haji.

Buy / order
Kirja kerrallaan, Lasipalatsi, Mannerheimintie 22-24, 00100 Helsinki, tel.  +358-9-612 7798 EUR 29,00 (book and disc) EUR 21,01 + mailing costs (book only)

Read more:

Presentation at the ntamo site (Finnish)

Preface by Kiamars Baghbani

Preface by Leevi Lehto

Download recordings


Reading by Kiamars Baghbani and Leevi Lehto (line per line),  1:14:20, .mp3, 70,6 MB
Reading by Kiamars Baghbani and Leevi Lehto (poem per poem),   1:15:24, .mp3, 69,6


Reading by Kiamars Baghbani and Leevi Lehto (selected poems, line per line), Runo ja Sävel event, Vuosali, Helsinki, Sept. 12, 2009, 18:22, .wmv, 310 MB

Viinittä ei voi elää!” Coreography  and dance by Saara Lehto to Omar Khaijam sung, to tunes of ”Bandari” music,  by Golamreza Vazza (in Persian) and Leevi Lehto (in Finnish), 5:10, .wmv, 81MB