purple tulips, istanbul tulip festival, istanbul, pentax k10d
Calm in the Midst of Lightning
When the love-lion wants to drink our blood,
we let him. Every moment we offer up
a new soul. Someone comes to collect
the turban and the shoes.
Calm in the midst of lightning
stands the cause of lightning.
The way I look is so fragile,
yet here in my hand
is an assurance of eternity.
A snake drags along looking for the ocean.
What would it do with it?
If, for penance, you crush grapes,
you may as well drink the wine.
You imagine that the old sufis
had dark sediment in their cups.
It does not matter what you think.
The flower that does not smile
at the branch withers.
Shams Tabriz rises as the sun.
It is night now.
What’s the point of counting stars?
by Coleman Barks
original text is in Four New Translations of Rumi
red tulip, istanbul tulip festival, istanbul, pentax k10d
Fasting is the first principle of medicine.
I have been tricked by flying too close
to what I thought I loved.
Now the candleflame is out, the wine spilled,
and the lovers have withdrawn
somewhere beyond my squinting.
The amount I thought I’d won, I’ve lost.
My prayers becomes bitter and all about blindness.
How wonderful it was to be for a while
with those who surrender.
Others only turn their faces on way,
then another, like pigeon in flight.
I have known pigeons who fly in a nowhere,
and birds that eat grainlessness,
and tailor who sew beautiful clothes
by tearing them to pieces.
(Mathnawi, V. 346-353) Like This,
Rumi, Coleman Barks, Maypop Books
taken by Pentax K10D, at Istanbul