Two weeks ago I was on my way back home taking the 2 train as I normally do. The train was unusually crowded and I decided that instead of trying to wedge myself into a tight space between two grumpy people I would stand and read.
I was reading a book I picked up recently on Islamic Poetry from early Sufis to 17th century. I saw that there was a section on Shah Nimatullah. I figured I would read that section, and I came across the following poem:
King and Beggar are one, are one
The hunger and sated are one, are one
Sorrowful I am and drink the dregs
The Dregs, sorrow and cure are one, are one
There is none but One in this world.
Speak not of two, God is one, is One
I have seen a thousand mirrors,
But the Beloved’s face is one, is one
We are stricken by one who’s fair and tall,
But the stricken and illness are one, are one.
A drop, the sea, the wave and the four elements
Are without doubt in our sight but One, but one.
Nimatullah is one in the two worlds,
Seek him here, he’s one, he’s One.
When I reached the end of the line, “But the Beloved’s face is one, and is one” I was approach by a homeless woman, who suddenly, without warning got uncomfortable close to my face to tell me her story. While hearing her words, I remembered the line that “King and Beggar are one, are one.” Somewhere in that moment many things came together in a way unexpected.
What more can be said