|One of the marvels of the world is the sight of a soul |
sitting in prison with the key in its hand !
Covered with dust,
with a cleansing waterfall inches away!
A young man who rolls from side to side,
though the bed is comfortable and a pillow holds his head.
He has a living master, yet he wants more, and there is more.
If a prisoner hadn't lived outside, he would not detest the dungeon.
Desiring knows there's satisfaction beyond this.
Straying maps the path.
A secret freedom opens through a crevice you can barely see.
Your love of many things proves they're one.
Every separate stiff trunk and stem in the garden
connects with nimble root hairs underground.
The awareness wine drinker wants cannot be tasted in wine,
but the failure brings deep thirst closer.
So the heart keeps ignoring the waterfall and the key,
but there is one guiding through all the desiring restlessness.
The old captains are blind to the young man's qualities.
They keep arguing their tired arguments:
how spiritual maturity arrives like leaflessness,
the lightness of winter trees that comes with age.
Such predictable phrases breeze out of the old soldiers
who presume to advise Muhammad!
Don't use words in the presence of the Friend.
When you sit down with your beloved, tell the chaperone,
the word-woman who brought you together, to leave.
Silence is better.
From Book 5 of the Masnawi
Translated by Coleman Barks
in " The Soul of Rumi"