Rumi's Flute of Fire

M Zaman

“This pliant of flute is fire, not mere air.
Let him who lacks this fire be accounted dead!”
(Book I, Prologue, Masnavi of Rumi)

None but the one with a fiery core
Can explode in nuggets of gold
And calm the wuthering harrows
Heralding from the crimson osier bed;
A lover picked up the osier reed;
He pumped every kernel of his fire into;
And watched it grow and grow;
Like a dancing string growing into
The infinite filigree of
Warping time and space.
This fleeting lives of ours
This vacuous journey of ours
And this arena of the empty vastness
An illusion in sweetness, ah...
Out of nothingness springs this spring of corporeal life
And in nothingness shall this end
In the void dwell that non-zero grain
And fills this barren corpse with
Life's exquisite melody,
This endless wonder of existence.

A poet and an accidental physician; he lives with his lovely wife on the Raquette River in a quaint college town on the foothills of the majestic Adirondacks, enchantingly irenic with rivulets full of toothsome water, and hills rarely trodden. His poems are published or accepted for publication in the High Shelf Press, the Stardust Review, the Black Horse Review and the Cathexis North West Press. He also writes in his native language Bangla. His most recent publication in Bangla is a translation of the Epic of Gilgamesh.

Issue 18
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