Monday, 22 October 2018

The Child and the Candle - Allama Iqbal

O Child with moth-like nature, “How strange that
You keep gazing at the flame of the candle for hours

What is this movement, when you are in my lap?
Are you intending to embrace the light?

Though your tiny heart is surprised at this spectacle
But this is recognition of some object already seen!

The candle is but a flame, you are the Light embodied
Ah! In this assembly that is manifest, you are concealed

It is not known why the Nature’s hand made it manifest!
And concealed you in the dark soil’s mantle

Your light has been concealed under the veil of Intellect!
The veil of Cognition is a mere mist to the wise eye!

What is called life really a mirage it is
A dream, a swoon, an ecstasy, oblivion it is

The Nature’s assembly is the Beauty’s boundless ocean
For the discerning eye every drop is the Beauty’s storm

Beauty is in the frightening silence of the mountain
In shedding of sun’s light, and in night’s darkness

It is in the morning sky’s mirror-like glitter
In the night’s darkness and in the twilight’s floridity

It is in the disappearing relics of the old magnificence
In the small child’s effort to commence speaking

It is in the harmony of the denizens of the rose-garden
In the nest-building efforts of the tiny little birds

In the mountain stream, in the ocean’s freedom is Beauty
In the city, the forest, the wilderness, the habitation is Beauty

The soul but longing for some lost object is
Or else why is it lamenting in wilderness like a bell?

It is restless even in this general splendour of Beauty
Its life is like a fish out of water."

Allama Iqbal (Sir Muhammad Iqbal) (1877 - 1938) Pakistan
Translated by M.A.K. Khalil
Source: Dr Sir Muhammad Iqbal web site

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