a prayer

mera dard naghma-e-be-sada
meri zaat zarra-e-be-nishaan
mere dard ko jo zabaan milay
mujhe apna naam-o-nishaan milay
meri zaat ka jo nishaan milay

mujhe raaz-e-nazm-e-jahaan milay
jo mujhe ye raaz-e-nihaan milay
meri khamoshi ko bayaan milay
mujhe kaainaat ki sarwari
mujhe daulat-e-do jahaan milay

– faiz ahmed faiz

Our hidden sorrows are also the meanings of our lives. May they find a voice. May we discover, in that voice, our true destinies. If there is a god, may he illuminate for us the secrets of existence. Perhaps then, when silence speaks, when that which is unknown becomes known, perhaps then, we are truly alive, awake, attuned to our destinies.

Like nobody else, Faiz knows the mysteries of the unknown and the known. How the unknown is always the companion of sorrow. How sorrow is always the companion of the unknown. How, to fully live our sorrows, is to also find beauty and illumination in our lives.

In a metaphor that is deeply steeped in the Sufi way of life, the poet lets himself be soaked by the unknown. The poet is not afraid to suffer, but in fact sees suffering as the fire that will purify him, as the water that will evoke a thirst for the eternal. All is surrendered in the face of the truly real, that which truly is. There is only surrender.

The poem is mysterious in its sounds, and in its meanings. There are no concrete interpretations to take home, but only that sense of a deep, abiding, beautiful mystery that makes our lives worth living, for our short time on this planet we call home.


~ by tdcatss on October 6, 2017.

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