Tuesday, November 17, 2009

Fallen to the Earth

I hail from a very tight-knit community. Families have lived in that same strip of land, along the north-eastern coast of the island of O'ahu, for several generations. Some, as far back as pre-Captain Cook/ pre-European contact. I say that only to illustrate that we are a very close community. We all know each other. We are all connected to each other in some way. So when tragedy strikes in the community, when death steals a youthful soul, we all feel it so deeply. (Even if I'm not physically there, I feel it too!)

This past weekend a young man passed in a terrible car wreck. The accident reminded me so much of when my cousin passed back in 1996. Former Kahuku High School football star. Car accident. Late Saturday night. Even the location of the wreck was just a few yards from where my cousin's car accident occured. The gloom that is associated with losing someone so young just breaks my heart. So today, in rememberance of my cousin and the young man that passed on late Saturday night, I offer my deepest condolences to the families that are left behind.

When I Die, By Rumi

When I die
when my coffin
is being taken out
you must never think
i am missing this world

don't shed any tears
don't lament or
feel sorry
i'm not falling
into a monster's abyss

when you see
my corpse is being carried
don't cry for my leaving
i'm not leaving
i'm arriving at eternal love

when you leave me
in the grave
don't say goodbye
remember a grave is
only a curtain
for the paradise behind

you'll only see me
descending into a grave
now watch me rise
how can there be an end
when the sun sets or
the moon goes down

it looks like the end
it seems like a sunset
but in reality it is a dawn
when the grave locks you up
that is when your soul is freed

have you ever seen
a seed fallen to earth
not rise with a new life
why should you doubt the rise
of a seed named human

have you ever seen
a bucket lowered into a well
coming back empty
why lament for a soul
when it can come back
like Joseph from the well

when for the last time
you close your mouth
your words and soul
will belong to the world of
no place no time

~RUMI, ghazal number 911,
translated May 18, 1992,
by Nader Khalili.


Live Well, Laugh Often, Love Much said...
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Live Well, Laugh Often, Love Much said...

The same thing has been on my mind a lot lately. Similarities of the two incidents are so ironic.