The pomegranate is one of Iran’s many gifts to the world. Unsurprisingly, this sumptuous fruit features in its arts, especially carpets, ceramics and poetry.
This poem by the Persian mystic Rumi finds a special wisdom in the ripe pomegranate:
THE LAUGHTER OF POMEGRANATES:
If you buy a pomegranate,buy one whose ripeness
has caused it to be cleft open
with a seed-revealing smile.
Its laughter is a blessing,for through its wide-open mouth
it shows its heart,
like a pearl in the jewel box of spirit.
The red anemone laughs, too,
but through its mouth you glimpse a blackness.
A laughing pomegranate
brings the whole garden to life.
Keeping the company of the holy
makes you one of them
Whether you are stone or marble,
you will become a jewel
when you reach a human being of heart.
Plant the love of the holy ones within your spirit;
don’t give your heart to anything
but the love of those whose hearts are glad.
Don’t go to the neighborhood of despair:
there is hope.
Don’t go in the direction of darkness:
The heart guides you to the neighborhood of the saints;
the body takes you to the prison of water and earth.
Give your heart the food of holy friends;
seek maturity from those who have matured.
Learn more about Garland’s Persian Prospect.
(Photo Credit – Sarah Sammis, Flickr, Disclaimer – Garland magazine does not own the copyright or licence for this image.)