Inspired by Rumi
Is This Even Poetry?
No longer does rhyme leave your tongue so easily
No longer are meaningful verses sung so easily
You worry forever that your poetry is not enough
You worry that your poetry’s not o’ that timeless stuff
That the beat of your music contains no flare
That letters are ink, that voices are air
Does your writing inspire either hate or love?
Does it contain any inspiration from above?
Is there any beauty left in the stuff you say?
Is there any light left for you in the sun’s rays?
Are these even lines, is this even poetry?
Are these even rhymes, is this even poetry?
Your meter’s broken, your rhythm’s dead
Your music brings neither joy nor sorrow
Your metaphors, spoken, your verses, said
Your words bring no better tomorrow
Your tone lacks both heart and skill
Your symbols fly all over the page
Your lyrics unable to cure souls’ ills
Your stories die in their old age
Your meaning, unclear, your purpose, unknown
Your message won’t go beyond rhyme
Your motives, insincere, your analogies, unsown
Your voice won’t echo till the edge of time
Is this stanza enough for a sonnet to be formed?
Is a broken sonnet enough for poetry to be born?
Then what is?
When pieces of your shattered soul become one with mine
Then broken meter with crushed hearts and souls does align
When your ink is the blood from your heart that’s burst
Then tears will be shed again from your lifeless verse
Pages are ripped like your soul was from your body torn
After hundreds of years, voices begin to rise and mourn
When your metaphors are with true feeling replaced
Then tomorrow arises with your colours’ interlaced
Give freely from red blood, blue tears, & green life
So hearts are still stirred from tales of pain and strife
This unskilled rhyme is all I have to give, so take it then
After thousands of years, red & blue become fire & water again
When you give your lyrics honesty’s potency
When you create hope, however hopelessly
Maybe then you will have given birth to poetry
O Iqbal, can’t your strength reach us sooner?
O Rumi, won’t you lend some light to Umer?
What was writ before won’t be the stuff of archives
After millions of years, tomorrow finally arrives
After Winter’s end, you brought light back to the sun,
After Spring’s end, fire and water again became one,
After Summer and Fall, when Endless Winter returned,
After the Fifth Season, when you had your soul burned,
Even after billions of years, when your words never abound,
And even after the end of years, voices from above sound,
Once again, echoes reaching the edge of time are found:
“Strike the beat harder when the taste for music is lacking
Sing the song louder when the weight becomes overwhelming”*
*Translated and reworded the ending lines from Iqbal’s poem “Urfi”, which are themselves quoting Urfi
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