Tuesday, December 11, 2018

"An Empty Garlic" by Jalâloddin Rumi


You miss the garden,
because you want a small fig from a random tree.
You don’t meet the beautiful woman.
You’re joking with an old crone.
It makes me want to cry how she detains you,
stinking mouthed, with a hundred talons,
putting her head over the roof edge to call down,
tasteless fig, fold over fold, empty
as dry-rotten garlic.

She has you tight by the belt,
even though there’s no flower and no milk
inside her body.
Death will open your eyes
to what her face is: leather spine
of a black lizard. No more advice.

Let yourself be silently drawn
by the stronger pull of what you really love.

Source of the text – Jalâloddin Rumi, The Essential Rumi, translations by Coleman Banks with John Moyne. San Franciso: HarperSanFrancisco, 1995, p. 50-51.

TJB: Garlic allegory. In this gastrolyric, old garlic is figured as a controlling old woman stifling a romance. Best to store in a cool dry place...

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