Wednesday, May 08, 2013

[Sunlight] Not knowing – Ghazal 1436



Art thou the sun, or Venus, or the moon? I
don't know. What dost Thou want from this bewildered
madman? I don't know.
In this court of Ineffability all is Gentleness and
Harmony -- what plain art Thou, what meadow, what court? I
don't know.
Thy Face has made my spirit roses, violets,
narcissus, and lilies; Thy Moon has illuminated my moon. What
companion art Thou? I don't know.
What a marvellous ocean within the heart, full
of fish and shoreless! I have never seen such an ocean, I do
not know such fish.
The kingship of creatures is a tale, as
insignificant as a kingcup* -- no king do I know but that
Subsistent King.
Marvellous, infinite Sun -- all of thy dustmotes
are speaking! Art Thou the Light of God's Essence? Art Thou
God? I don't know.
Thy comeliness is burning the souls of a
thousand Jacobs to cinders -- oh Joseph of beauties, why art
Thou in this well? I don't know.
Be silent! For you are a talebearer, you are
drowned in constant change. At one moment you are hu, at
another ha, at another ah -- I don't know.
I will be silent, for I am drunk from the spell
that has overcome me. I do not know selflessness and
intoxication from awareness.

-- Ghazal 1436
Translation by Professor William Chittick
"The Sufi Path of Love"
SUNY Press, Albany, 1983

*... as insignificant as a kingcup -- kingscup [shah-daanah]: a hemp seed;
also the largest seed in an Islamic set of "rosary" beads [tasbeeh].
(Sunlight footnote courtesy of Dr. Ibrahim Gamard)




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