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Time is a sword



GREEN be the holy grave of Shafi’i,!
Whose vine hath cheered a whole world ?
His thought plucked a star from heavens:
He named time "a cutting sword." 111
How shall I say what is the secret of this sword ? 1535
In its flashing edge there is life.
Its owner is exalted above hope and fear.
His hand is whiter than the hand of Moses.
At one stroke thereof water gushes from the rock
And the sea becomes land from dearth of moisture. 1540
Moses held this sword in his hand,
Therefore he wrought more than man may contrive.
He clove the Red Sea asunder
And made its waters like dry earth.
The arm of Ali, the conqueror of Khaibar, 1545
Drew its strength from this same sword
The revolution of the sky is worth seeing,
The change of day and night is worth observing.112
Look, I thou enthralled by Yesterday and Tomorrow,
Behold another world in thine, on heart! 1550.
Thou hast sown the seed of darkness in the clay,
Thou hast imagined Time as a line.
Thy thought measures length of Time With the measure
Of night and day.
Thou mak'st this line a girdle on thine infidel waist; 1555
Thou art an advertiser of falsehoods like idols.
Thou wert the Elixir, and thou hast become a Peck of dust;
Thou wert born the conscience of Truth and thou hast become a lie!
Art thou a Muslim girdle! Then cast of this girdle!
Be a candle to the feast of the religion of the free! 1560
Knowing not the origin of Time,
Thou art ignorant of everlasting Life.
How long wilt thou be a thrall of night and day?
Learn the mystery of Time from the words "I have a time with God.'113
Phenomena arise from the march of Time, 1565
Life is one of Time's mysteries.
The cause of Time is not the revolution of the sun
Time is everlasting, but the sun does not last for ever.
Time is joy and sorrow, festival and fast,
Time is the secret of moonlight and sunlight. 1570
Thou hast extended Time, like Space,
And distinguished Yesterday from Tomorrow.
Thou hast fled like a scent, from thine own garden;
Thou hast made thy prison with thine own hand.
Our Time which has neither r beginning nor end, 1575
Blossoms from the flower-bed of our, mind.
To know its root quickens the living with new life:
Its being is more splendid than the dawn.
Life is of Time, and Time is of Life:
"Do not abuse Time !" was the command of the Prophet.114 1580
Oh, the memory of those days when Time's sword
Was allied with the strength of our hands !115
We sowed the seed of religion in men's hearts
And unveiled the face of Truth;
Our nails tore loose the knot of this world, 1585
Our bowing in prayer give blessings to the earth.
From the jar of Truth we made rosy wine gush forth,
We charged against the ancient taverns.
O thou in whose cup is old wine
A wine so hot that the glass is well nigh turned to water, 1590
Wilt thou in thy pride and arrogance and self-conceit
Taunt us with our emptiness?
Our cup, too, hath graced the symposium
Our breast hath owned a spirit.
The new age with all its glories 1595
Hath risen from the dust of our feet.
Our blood hath watered God's harvest,
All worshippers of God are our debtors.
The takbir was our gift to the world,116
Ka'bas were built of our clay. 1600
By means of us God taught the Koran,
From our hand He dispensed His bounty.
Although crown and signet have passed from us,
Do not look with contempt on our beggarliness!
In thine eyes we are good for nothing, 1605
Thinking old thoughts, despicable.
We have honour from "There is no god but Allah."
We are the protectors of the universe.
Freed from the vexation of to-day and tomorrow.
We have pledged ourselves to love One. 1610
We are the conscience hidden in God's heart,
We are the heirs of Moses and Aaron,
Sun and moon are still bright with our radiance,
Lightning-flashes still lurk in our cloud.
In our essence Divinity is mirrored: 1615
The Muslim's being is one of the signs of God.


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