Thursday, December 10, 2009

[Sunlight] "The quarry of annihilation"



You imprisoned in air nine spheres of emerald till
you brought into orbit a form of earth.*
Water, what are you washing? Wind, what are
you seeking? Thunder, why are you roaring? Sphere,
why are you turning?
Love, why are you laughing? Reason, why are
you binding? Patience, why are you content? Face, why
are you pale?
What place is there for the head on the road of
fidelity? What worth has life itself in the religion of
That man is perfect in quality who is the quarry
of annihilation; there is room for not one hair in the circle
of uniqueness.
Whether anguish or joy, it is far from freedom;
cold is that person who remains in hotness and coldness.
Where is the gleam of the charming brow if you
have seen my moon? Where is the gleam of drunkeness if
you have drunk spiritual wine?
Has not disquietude from this purse and that bowl
seized you? After all you are not a blind ass; what are you
circling around?
With the breast unwashed what profits it to wash
the face? From greed you are like a broom, you are always
in this dust.
Every day for me is Friday, and this sermon of
mine is perpetual; this pulpit of mine is high, my screen is
true manliness.
When the steps of this pulpit become empty of men,
the spirits and the angels will bring a present from God.

*In the past it was believed that the earth was encircled by nine spheres.

-- Ghazal (Ode) 2589
Translation by A. J. Arberry
"Mystical Poems of Rumi 2"
The University of Chicago Press, 1991




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