Flower: A Poem by Iqbal

Flower: A Poem by Iqbal

Mansoor Alam
[Translated from Urdu]


Why are thou worried about the nightingale’s wounded heart you, O Rose!

Repair your own torn self first, and then worry about her woes.

If you wish to live with honor and dignity in this floral glade,

Then learn to live among thorns, their sharp pinches ignore.

The cypress tree is both free and firmly planted in earth

Learn the art of living free, despite the limitations imposed

Put the niggardly heart to shame, reject all proffered dole,

Be not obliged to the dew, overturn your bowl.

It does not befit your self-respect that plucking from the grove

Some should decorate their necks and some their turban folds

If you want to escape the autumn’s withering hold

Remove yourself from desires of being lost in the floral grove

Herein lies the perfection of life, your life’s ultimate goal

That some perfect and shining one should embrace you and hold


[Note: Iqbal is referring his people here as rose; and the Prophet (PBUH) as the perfect and shining one]


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