Wednesday, September 14, 2011

[Sunlight] I wasn’t like this before -- Ghazal 1506


Sunlight offers two presentations of Ghazal (Ode) 1506 -- a
poetic translation by Nader Khalili, and a translation of a translation by Nevit Ergin, who was working from a classic Turkish edition of the Diwan-e Shams:


believe me
i wasn't always like this
lacking common sense
or looking insane

like you
i used to be clever
in my days

never like this
totally enraptured
totally gone

like sharp shooters
i used to be
a hunter of hearts

not like today
with my own heart
drowning in its blood

nonstop asking and
searching for answers
that was then

but now
so deeply enchanted
so deeply enthralled

always pushing
to be ahead and above
since i was not yet hunted down
by this
ever-increasing love

-- Translation by Nader Khalili
"Rumi, Fountain of Fire"
Cal-Earth Press, 1991


"Not Like This Before"

I wasn't like this before.
I wasn't out of my mind and senses.
Once I used to be wise like you,
not crazy, insane and broken down
like I am now.

I wasn't the admirer of life
which has no trace, no being.
I used to ask, "Who is this?
What is that?"
and search all the time.

Since you have wisdom,
sit and think
that probably I was like this before.
I haven't changed much.

I used to try to make
myself better than everybody.
I hadn't been hunted
with the ever-growing Love before.
I tried to rise above the sky
with my ambition
yet I didn't know
I was just wandering in the desert.
At the end, I have raised
a treasure from the ground.

-- Second generation translation by Nevit O.Ergin
"Magnificent One: Selected Verses from Divan-I Kebir"
Larson Publishing Company, 1993




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