poet Mewlana Jalaluddin Rumi

Mewlana Jalaluddin Rumi

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I Am And I Am Not

I'm drenched
in the flood
which has yet to come

I'm tied up
in the prison
which has yet to exist
Not having played
the game of chess
I'm already the checkmate
Not having tasted
a single cup of your wine
I'm already drunk
Not having entered
the battlefield
I'm already wounded and slain
I no longer
know the difference
between image and reality
Like the shadow
I am
I am not

Translated by: Fereydoun Kia

Poem Submitted: Saturday, October 26, 2013
Poem Edited: Saturday, October 26, 2013

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Comments about I Am And I Am Not by Mewlana Jalaluddin Rumi

  • Oliver Simoes (12/29/2017 5:42:00 PM)

    It makes me wonder if Shakespeare's to be or not to be was influenced by Rumi. The similarities are astounding!

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  • Gunturu Lakshminarasaiah (1/27/2017 7:49:00 AM)

    Human tendency to live in illusion rather than reality is imagistically summarized here. More than reality, reality imposed by individual whims and fancies is the core theme of the poem. Technically, I consider the poem as an earlier version of imagism.

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  • Rod MendietaRod Mendieta (12/18/2016 10:07:00 AM)

    Always good to be reminded that perhaps you're not the frail little self that you take for the ultimate and whole you.

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  • Susan WilliamsSusan Williams (10/12/2015 1:53:00 PM)

    I liked this. I read another poem by him and did not like it at all. I think perhaps the translator made the difference.

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    Hogwash(12/29/2017 5:44:00 PM)

    I read several of Rumi's poems and they are all great. Are you saying this because he was Persian (modern-day Iranian) ? lol

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