Friday, March 02, 2007

Fasting by Jelaluddin Rumi


There's hidden sweetness in the stomach's emptiness.
We are lutes, no more, no less.
If the soundbox is stuffed full of anything, no music.
If the brain and belly are burning clean with fasting,
every moment a new song comes out of the fire.
The fog clears, and new energy makes you run up the steps in front of you.
Be emptier and cry like reed instruments cry.
Emptier, write secrets with the reed pen.
When you're full of food and drink,
Satan sitswhere your spirit should,
an ugly metal statue
in place of the Kaaba.
When you fast, good habits gather like friends who want to help.
Fasting is Solomon's ring.
Don't give it to some illusion and lose your power,
but even if you have, if you've lost all will and control,
they come back when you fast,
like soldiers appearing
out of the ground, pennants flying above them.
A table descends to your tents,
Jesus' table.
Expect to see it, when you fast, this tablespread with other food, better than the broth of cabbages.

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