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Quatrain 49

The spring wind comes, but it still burns;
The birds are beautiful, but still without nests—
Our hearts beat,  but they are still alone.
That’s life, I suppose; there’s a little vanity in everything.

Incredible.

– Salah Jahin

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Quatrain 40

It was only a million miles from our land
And in the cosmic emptiness did I finally realize
I had never seen a difference between mountains and the sea;
I never saw what was torment, and what is here.

Amazing.

– Salah Jahin

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The philosopher sits thinking—leave him.
Don’t make him an authority—but don’t crucify him;
Hasn’t anyone told you that the philosophers
Who have spoken to him all turn back and make him a liar?

Extraordinary, no?

– Salah Jahin

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Having some trouble with quatrain 17. Full text:

عجبتني كلمة من كلام الورق

النور شرق من بين حروفها وبرق

حبيت اشيلها ف قلبي… قالت حرام

ده انا كل قلب دخلت فيه اتحرق

One of the words on the page caught my eye,
The light rising from between its letters, flashing.
I loved this word, and carried it in my heart. It said: “Forbidden.
“This is me, through which every heart enters and is burned up.”

I am completely at sea on this one, and could use some advice as per the last two lines; I’m clear up until the ellipses, and then, owing to the lack of case markings, I have no idea what each part of speech is.

A hand, perhaps?

You out there, Mohamed?

*      *     *

Final Version, added 11 February, 2010

One of the words on the page caught my eye,
The light rising from between its letters, flashing.
I loved this word, and carried it in my heart. It said: “Forbidden.”
That’s me: every heart enters this word and is burned up.

With many thanks to Rumi for the final line.

– MJN

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