'Rumi and the new year '...


I have returned, like the new year, to break the
locks of the prison and smash the claws and teeth of these
man-eating spheres.

The seven waterless planets are devouring the
creatures of earth — I will throw water upon their fire and still
their winds.

I have flown from the beginningless King like a
falcon in order to kill the parrot-eating owls* of this ruined
monastery.

From the beginning I made a covenant to
sacrifice my spirit to the King. May my spirit’s back be broken
should I break my pledge and covenant!
Today I am Asaf, Solomon’s vizier, sword and
firman in hand — I will break the necks of any who are
arrogant before the King.

If you see the garden of the rebellious
flourishing for a day or two, grieve not! For I will cut their
roots from a hidden direction.
I will break nothing but injustice or the evil-
intentioned tyrant — should anything have a mote of savor, then
I am an unbeliever should I break it
Wherever there is a polo ball, it is taken away
by the mallet of Oneness — if a ball does not roll down the
field. I will smash it with the blow of my mallet.

I now reside in His banquet, for I saw that His
intention is Gentleness. I became the least servant of His way
in order to break Satan’s legs.

I was a single nugget, but when the Sultan’s
hand grasped hold of me, I became the mine — if you place me
in the balance, I will break the scales.

When you allow a ruined and drunken man like
myself into your house, do you not know at least this much: I
will break this and break that?

If the watchman shouts, “Hey!” I will pour a
cup of wine on his head; and if the doorman seizes hold of
me, I will break his arm.

If the spheres do not rotate round my heart, I
will pull them up by the roots; if the heavens act with
villainy, I will smash the turning heavens.

Thou hast spread the tablecloth of Generosity
and invited me to lunch — why doest Thou rebuke me when I
break the bread?

No, no — I sit at the head of Thy table, I am the
chief of Thy guests. I will pour a cup or two of wine upon the
guests and break their shame.

Oh Thou who inspirest my spirit with poetry
from within! Should I refuse and remain silent, I fear I would
break Thy command.

If Shams-i Tabrizi should send me wine and
make me drunk, I would be free of cares and break down the
pillars of the universe.



– Translation by William Chittick
“The Sufi Path of Love”
SUNY Press, Albany, 1984

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