I never saw a lamp shine more brilliantly
than the lamp of silence.

Nur ad-Din Abd ar-Rahman Jami (1414-92) is known as the last great classical poet of Persia. He was a mystic and a member of the Nakshibandi Sufi order, these influences are vital to understanding his poetry. Jami produced a large body of greatly varied work which demonstrated a deep and extensive understanding. Although he wrote a great deal of finely honed prose, it is for his poetry that he is chiefly known.

the poetry of Jami

And if it would be a restless nightingale, be a nightingale! You are a part and Reality is the Whole, So for a few days only meditate on the Whole, be the Whole! If in your heart a rose appears, be a rose! On the lute of my heart plays only one song of love: Because of this melody, from head to foot, I am in love. Truly, for ages I will never be able To pay what I owe for one moment of love. To my rosy cheeked friend I said: O, you with a mouth like a rosebud! Do not always hide your face as if you are a flirting girl! She laughed and said: ÔUnlike the beauties of this world, In the curtain I am manifest and without the curtain I am hidden. Without a veil your countenance cannot be seen, Without a veil your eyes cannot be seen. Unless one is experiencing complete enlightenment The source of the sun cannot be seen. Being manifests Itself in everything. If you want to discover Its state in everything, Go and see how the bubbles are on top of the wine: The wine is they in them and they are wine in the wine! Neighbour, companion, fellow traveller, all are He! In mendicantŐs habit and in kingŐs satin, all are He! In the assemblies of separation and in the private places of union, By God, all are He, once again: by God, all are He. O, radiance has been given to the mirror because of Your face. No one has ever seen a mirror without Your face. No, no! It is because of Your grace, That in every mirror You Yourself appear and not Your face. O, You in whose holy tabernacle none has any place: The world appears because of You, but of You is no trace. You and I, we are not separated, but I, I, though You donŐt need me, I am in need of Your grace. O, heart! How long will you search for perfection in schools? How long will you try to perfect philosophy, geometry and all its rules? Every thought which is no remembrance of God is an evil inspiration, Be modest before God! How long these evil thoughts? (Leave them to fools!) We have run on the path of love all our life, We have searched with great force for union with You all our life. To catch one glimpse of You is better for our sight Than the beauty of earthly beauties all our life. Each attractive form that shows its face to you, Destiny will soon steal it from the eyes of you. Go and give your heart to someone who in all turns of existence Always has been with you and always will be with you. O, man of importance, perhaps with money and offspring you may start, But it is clear that with all these after a short time you will have to part. Happy is he who connects his heart to the Beloved. And with heart and soul is tied to the folk of heart.

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