Tuesday, July 18, 2006

"Only now do you apprehend"

I've paid no attention to Your warnings:
while claiming to be an idol-breaker, I've really been an idol-maker.
Should I pay more attention to Your works or to death?
Let it be death, for death is like autumn,
and You are the root from which all leaves spring.
For years death has been beating the drum,
but only when time has fled does your ear hear.
In agony the heedless man cries from the depths of his soul,
"Alas, I am dying!" Has death only just now awakened you?
Death is hoarse from shouting:
from so many astounding blows, his drum skin has split,
but you enmeshed yourself in trivialities;
and only now do you apprehend this mystery of death.

~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~

Az nasihat-hâ-ye To kar budeh-'am
bot shekan da`vâ botgar budeh-'am
Yâd-e son`et farz-tar yâ yâd-e marg
marg mânand khazân To asl-e barg
Sâl-hâ marg tablak mi zanad
gush-e to bigâh jonbesh mi konad
Guyad andar naz` az jân "Âh marg"
in zamân kardet ze khvod âgâh marg?
In golu-ye marg az na`reh gereft
tabl-e u be-shekâft az zarb-e shekeft
dar daqâyeq khvish-râ dar bâfti
ramz-e mordan in zamân dar yâfti

-- Mathnawi VI:771-776
Version by Camille and Kabir Helminski
"Rumi: Jewels of Remembrance"
Threshold Books, 1996
Persian transliteration courtesy of Yahyá Monastra

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1 comment:

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