Musings on hearing a Persian wedding song

 Jews and non-Jews from the Persian city of Shiraz recite a wedding song unknown to other Iranians. It set Tabby Refael thinking about how age-old cultural traditions still survive in contemporary America. But for how much longer? Article in the Jewish Journal of LA:

I am intermarried. 

That is to say, I am a Jew from Tehran who married a Jew from Shiraz, Iran. 

In the United States, that’s usually about as far as intermarriage goes for Persian Jews. For now, anyway. 

Some are beginning to marry non-Persian Jews, and their Ashkenazi
spouses appear ecstatic to finally be able to eat rice during Passover —
and only slightly less important, finally to have found love.

At a recent ketubah-signing for my sister-in-law (a Shirazi) and her
fiance (a Tehrani), the sound of the non-Persian rabbi’s voice as he
spoke about the obligations of marriage was drowned out by the melodic
unity of Shirazi mothers pouring their hearts out singing “Vasoonak
Shirazi,” the wedding song whose melody all Iranians in Iran know,
regardless of faith. I knew that song before I could walk, talk or grill
my own meat by the age of 3.

Beyond its soulful poets, famous gardens and, before the revolution,
its winemaking legacy, the southern city of Shiraz also has produced one
of the greatest Persian songs of all time, whose words, sadly, few in
my generation of 30-somethings know (much less 20-somethings and younger
folks). At least the original song has been commercialized — some will
recognize it as “Mobarak Baad,” which has a few of the original

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