The wells are drying up, but the mercy of God flows on;
The dust storms obscure the sun, but the shining Word goes on.

Though this may not make sense one need not be an idiot—
One cannot see a minute, yet the stream of time flows on.

If one asserts self, one cannot deny self’s creator;
Though one stays outside the theatre, the dialogue flows on.

God is; and he is merciful. Then why not rain’s healing?
The pupil labors at spelling, but language still flows on.

If you believe in rose, you must believe in that virtue
Which engenders rose for you; though she dies, it still flows on.

Future is already becoming out of this moment;
The debtor is already solvent in time which flows on.

Don’t put the Master in mind’s dock. If we have to rehearse
Death by dying of thirst, it’s because God’s mercy flows on.


A poem that most likely causes the modern mind to do a series of double takes since it enunciates a viewpoint we seldom meet.

It present a reality not of separate discrete objects and selves but of the flowing of time and of mercy which time delivers. This flowing is more basic and real than all the accidentals of our lives.

The poem argues that to intuitively know one’s own selfhood is to have a response to the Selfhood governing the theatre of life, its actual invisible Substance.

The whole problem of suffering and God’s love is to be resolved in thinking this way. It is beyond our ordinary reasoning of cause and effect.

Rose, the individual flower, is in reality a universal archetype in the mind of God.

The rhythm of the poem and its constant refrain tries to capture something of the flow.

Even when He slays you don’t accuse Him from your own limited perspective on event and time. Out of this very moment the reality is the flow of time towards ultimate union. This is our treasure or solvency, even if we feel bankrupt at the moment.

» ghazal #104 »