A moth flying into the flame says
with its wingfire, Try this.
The wick with its knotted neck broken
tells you the same.
A candle as it diminishes explains, Gathering
more and more is not the way. Burn,
become light and heat and help.
The ocean sits in the sand
letting its lap fill with pearls
and shells, then empty.
A bittersalt taste hums, This.
The phoenix gives
up on good-and-bad, flies to rest on
the mountain, no more burning and rising
from ash. It sends out one message.
The rose purifies its face, drops
the soft petals, shows its thorn, and points.
Wine abandons thousands of
famous names, the vintage years and
delightful bouquets, to run wild
and anonymous through your brain.
The flute closes its eyes and gives
its lips to emptiness.
Everything begs with the silent rocks
for you to be flung out like light
over this plain.
Again, the violet bows to the lily.
Again, the rose is tearing off her gown!
The green ones have come up from the other world,
tipsy like the breeze up to come new foolishness.
Again, near the top of the mountain
the anemone’s sweet features appear.
The hyacinth speaks formally to the jasmine,
“Peace be with you.” “And peace to you, lad!
Come walk with me in this meadow.”
Again, there are Sufis everywhere!
The bud is shy, but the wind removes
her veil suddenly, “My friend!”
The Friend is here like the water in the stream,
like a lotus on the water.
The narcissus winks at the wisteria,
“Whenever you say.”
And the clove to the willow, “You are the one
I hope for.” The willow replies, “Consider
these chambers of mine yours. Welcome!”
The apple, “Orange, why the frown?”
“So that those who mean harm
will not see my beauty.”
The ringdove comes asking, “Where,
where is the Friend?”
With one note the nightingale
indicates the rose.
Again, the season of Spring has come
and a spring-source rises under everything,
a moon sliding from the shadows.
Many things must be left unsaid, because it’s late,
but whatever conversation we haven’t had
tonight, we’ll have tomorrow.