The faces I used to see, where did they vanish?
The ones I see today, they will – alas! – vanish.
The rosy grin etched deep like a moon in my heart,
Did I once think someday it would also vanish?
The cold stare that bore like an arrow into me,
Oh, how many times did I wish it to vanish!
The parents and the friends I held so close to me,
The poor souls could not help but, one by one, vanish.
The lanes and by-lanes I explored in distant lands,
Some lead the flock home, but many had to vanish.
The love that I wrapped around like a cashmere shawl,
Why did she sail in the winter storm and vanish?
Saadi fashioned The Rose Garden to survive him.
His words have outlived the sage and will not vanish.
“You’re neither Saadi nor Plato,” said my mother.
“Spread a little light around before you vanish.”
You wished to kiss me for the last time.
I thought we had split for the last time.
Pressed lips with closed eyes part forever.
But the heart never knows the last time.
If I could rid of the heart – oh! I’d
Be saved from the plague of the last time.
The new day that greets the sun, I know,
Will kiss it goodbye for the las time.
Wise men avow time heals, but wisdom’s
Just a crutch, no balm for the last time.
When the nightmare springs me to my feet,
I wish the last breath were the last time.
You hit the tavern; the zaheds sent you to hell.
You discovered Jam’s Cup; none will find it in hell.
Yes, you were the tavern, the wine, the winged spirit.
You sought the magical fire, not the fire of hell.
My soul wished to stretch to the dimple of your chin,
Hoping with your insight to keep all out of hell.
You threaded the unity of spirit and mind,
Delving within, away from the highroad to hell.
You were a seeker, a heart-healer, whose poems
Sprang from the water of grace, not the fire of hell.
You pacified with your ghazal even the fierce
Timur, who wished to turn your Shiraz into hell.
Though a hafiz, you advised not to memorize,
But value each other – to stay away from hell.
Whatever the zaheds said, your place in heaven
Is secure, claims Emerson. Have no fear of hell.