The Republic of Rumi: A Novel of Reality
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The Republic of Rumi: a Novel of Reality

Chapter 11

Poetics of the Garden


By Khurram Ali Shafique

In the next chapter you see a contrast between two types of poets.

Poets of beauty

A group of poets appear in the Garden. Their music breathes enchantment on the atmosphere. Nightingales are learning songs from them, roses are becoming brighter with their rouge, and moths are borrowing passion.

The poets invite everyone to their table and make their gift accessible like air. Caravans start marching.

Poets of ugliness

Presently there comes another company of poets. Their mirror shows beauty as ugliness. April is the cruelest month in their calendar: they kiss a rose and its freshness is gone. Nightingales listen to them and lose the joy of flying.

The music of these poets is plunging you in an ocean of thought, making you a stranger to action. Captains of ships are becoming enchanted and the ships are cast to the bottom of the sea. Societies are becoming inclined to collective suicides.

“Desire is love’s message to beauty,” says Iqbal. “It is sustained by the display of Beauty unveiling itself before the souls of poets. Woe to a people whose poet turns away from the joy of living. In their soul is a disease and by their words our sickness is increased.”

DISCUSS

  • Is their similarity between the two types of poetry depicted here and the two types of mysticism represented by Bu Ali Qalandar and the Doctrine of the Sheep respectively?
  • Can you say that you are gaining control over the forces of the Garden by understanding its Poetics?
  • Does your journey through the Garden acquaint you with “the true nature of poetry and the reform of Islamic literature”?

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The reader is offered a new kind of poetics that classifies literature on the basis of desirable and undesirable effect on the humanity.
Persian text