Today, before I go out to find blueberries and a final resting place for my onion, I’d like to share a poem of Hafiz with you.
This poem could have been addressed to me because I’m often lost in my imaginary world, and have long ago stopped trying to make any of it reality. But his words will paint pictures in your mind, and may have started to change mine.
Imagination Does Not Exist
You should come close to me tonight wayfarer
For I will be celebrating you.
Your beauty still causes me madness,
Keeps the neighbours complaining
When I start shouting in the middle of the night
Because I can’t bear all this joy.
I will be giving birth to suns.
I will be holding forests upside down
Gently shaking soft animals from trees and burrows
Into my lap.
What you conceive as imagination
Does not exist for me.
Whatever you can do in a dream
Or on your mind-canvas
My hands can pull – alive – from my coat pocket.
But let’s not talk about my divine world.
For what I most want to know
(Poem originally found here)
This has been my favorite poem since my 7th grade English teacher first read it to us. I had my eyes closed, so that I could imagine the story. If you are not familiar with it, you should try having it read to you as well. Here’s the loveliest rendition I’ve found. It’s too easy to intone the entire thing in a sing-song, emphasizing rhyme over meaning, but this recording avoids that pitfall beautifully.
During that initial reading, the first few lines made me roll my eyes. Childish. Then the poem took a rather dark turn and captured my attention. By the end, I was startled by its beauty. I think I gasped at the last lines. That’s love, I decided. That’s real love. Of course, I was 12 and I was wrong (that was limerence), but from then on, my notions of romance were never far from macabre.
And neither the angels in Heaven above
Nor the demons down under the sea,
Can ever dissever my soul from the soul
Of the beautiful Annabel Lee
Do you have any favorite poetry? Do tell!
Are we happy or not that the world isn’t made up of only mathematicians? I guess, if we like poetry, we are very glad of that fact. I read the following poem of Lord Byron and my interpretation was just one sentence.
So We’ll Go No More a Roving
by Lord Byron
So, we’ll go no more a roving
So late into the night,
Though the heart be still as loving,
And the moon be still as bright.
For the sword outwears its sheath,
And the soul wears out the breast,
And the heart must pause to breathe,
And love itself have rest.
Though the night was made for loving,
And the day returns too soon,
Yet we’ll go no more a roving
By the light of the moon.
Yes, just one line:
We’re not gonna party anymore because we’re old,
but I still love you.
Maybe it’s true what Dirac says about poetry:
In science one tries to tell people, in such a way as to be understood by everyone, something that no one ever knew before. But in poetry, it’s the exact opposite.
– Paul Dirac