May 2nd, 2013

Farid ud-Din Attar - The moths and the flame (Fragment)

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And when the mentor saw that sudden blaze,
The moth's form lost within the glowing rays,
He said: "He knows, he knows the truth we seek,
That hidden truth of which we cannot speak."
To go beyond all knowledge is to find
That comprehension which eludes the mind,
And you can never gain the longed-for goal
Until you first outsoar both flesh and soul;
But should one part remain, a single hair
Will drag you back and plunge you in despair --
No creature's self can be admitted here,
Where all identity must disappear.


-- from The Conference of the Birds, Translated by Afkham Darbandi / Translated by Dick Davis

Poetry Chaikhana | Farid ud-Din Attar - The moths and the flame