Sunday, May 20, 2012

Now I seek mornings

"At the time (in my youth), I was seeking out late afternoons, drab outskirts, and unhappiness; now I seek mornings, the center of town, peace."

Jorge Luis Borges
Prologue to 'Fervor de Buenos Aires'

What Was Told, That
Jalal al-Din Rumi
Translated by Coleman Barks

What was said to the rose that made it open was said
to me here in my chest.
What was told the cypress that made it strong
and straight, what was
whispered the jasmine so it is what it is, whatever made
sugarcane sweet, whatever
was said to the inhabitants of the town of Chigil in
Turkestan that makes them
so handsome, whatever lets the pomegranate flower blush
like a human face, that is
being said to me now. I blush. Whatever put eloquence in
language, that's happening here.
The great warehouse doors open; I fill with gratitude,
chewing a piece of sugarcane,
in love with the one to whom every that belongs!

Photo: Cubbon Park, this Sunday morning


adee said...


Rukhiya said...

I am so very tempted to read from Jorge Luis Borges with every reference you make. Its not a good thing when I have so much to study. :(

I have been, lately, more fascinated than previously, by translated poems - knowing that what I have just read and understood, as is- as the language its been translated to, permits; given the idiosyncrasies of the translator himself and the trickery of words - makes room for so much more.

Accidental Fame Junkie said...

Asha, this Rumi poem reminds me so much of Elif Shafak's "Forty Rules of Love". It's an exploration of Rumi's poetry and philosophy. Please read it if you haven't yet.


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