Ghazal: For Rumi’s 806th Birthday!

“Happy birthday to Rumi. He was born 806 years ago today. Like all philosophers of that time, his fame only came to him posthumously.”  So I read this morning at “A Mixed Bag”.  For Pablo Picasso, I created a false cubism Haiga…so for Rumi the least I can do is try to write a Ghazal!

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Ghazal

For Rumi

Verses of beauty wrote the great Rumi
Metaphors of love’s plea wrote the great Rumi

Embracing lovers in cunning Farsi,
Sensual bounty wrote the great Rumi

Persian born, of Islam in sweet loving terms,
Sufi philosophy wrote the great Rumi

Beyond right or wrong, seeking inside,
Without sophistry wrote the great Rumi

Can Bastet not sing his lauds on his birthday,
In Ghazal, for you see, wrote the great Rumi.

Ghazal: War

Today, thanks to TJ Therien, I was reminded of a form of poetry I very much enjoyed in my youth.  Most of you may know that the first ten years of my adult life I spent in different parts of Africa, and had the opportunity to meet some very interesting people, many were Africans of course but there were also many people who had come from the Middle East: Syria, Lebanon, Iran and Palestine, as well as some North Africans, specifically Egyptians.

It was basically through the Persians (Iranians nowadays) that I came to love and enjoy Rumi and Hafiz two Sufi poets.  Only today did I realize what poetry form they used!

Unfortunately, my first Ghazal poem, perhaps because of many of the memories that are linked to those days, is about war.  Many of my Muslim friends then and now, are immigrants, seeking peace because their countries are racked with war.  Here then is my first Ghazal:

 Ghazal

   War

Would walking down a darkened path lead us to a brighter day?
Or pounding breasts in anger and heat lead to a better way?

Will sharpening your butcher knife make you a better person?
Or drawing your bow-string lead you to love and a better way?

What is the logic behind the senseless vengeance, all the killing?
Bombing sleeping villagers who die unwilling…a better way?

Would the prophets glory in the carnage wrought in their name?
Or cover their heads in ashes praying for a better way?

What’s the sense speaking of love and harmony when we only hate?
Our words more important than reality:  is this the better way?

Questions haunt Bastet’s mind, accompanying her walk through life.
Watching men’s hatred and ideals showcased as a better way!