Friday, October 8, 2010


Blarney, Ireland

Philosophers have said that we love music
because it resembles the sphere-sounds of union.

We have been part of a harmony before,
so these moments of treble and bass
keep our remembering fresh.

Hearing the sound, we gather strength.
Love kindles with melody. Music feeds a lover
composure, and provides form for the imagination.
Music breathes on personal fire and makes it keener.

The waterhole is deep. A thirsty man climbs
a walnut tree growing next to the pool
and drops walnuts in one by one.

He listens carefully to the sound
as they hit and watches the bubbles.

A more rational man gives advice, You will regret
doing this. You are so far from the water
that by the time you get down to gather walnuts,
the water will have carried them away.

He replies, I am not here for walnuts.
I want the music they make when they hit.


Elisabeth said...

It is good to prefer the music to the walnuts, Ruth. If only I were not so materialistic.

Ruth said...

I find this poem so perfect, powerful in its gentleness. We are always listening for the music, Elisabeth. Part of our humanness is that we have to also gather walnuts. Just as soon as I focus on one, the music or the walnuts, the other must be tended. What I find in Rumi is that the two can, and must, be gathered together.

dirt clustit said...

I like the image you posted with Ruthi! I have a penchant for shadows AND I see two.

Two authors (or is writer the correct, it's authors) Two authors showing