Sunday, December 6, 2009

Elephant in the Dark

A coexist poem by Rumi

Some Hindus have an elephant to show.
No one here has ever seen an elephant.
They bring it at night to a darkened room.

On by one, we go in the dark and come out
saying how we experience the animal.

One of us happens to touch the trunk,
"A water-pipe kind of creature."

Another, the ear. "A very strong, always moving
back and forth fan animal."

Another, the leg. "I find it still,
like a column on a temple."

Another touches the curved back.
"A leathery throne."

Another, the cleverest, feels the tusk.
"A rounded sword made of porcelain."
He's proud of his description.

Each of us touches one place
and understands the whole that way.

The palm and the fingers feeling in the dark are
how the senses explore the reality of the elephant.

If each of us held a candle there,
and if we went in together,
we could see it.

2 comments:

JackiesMagic said...

You inspired me!

alphabet soup said...

Thank you for this Diane. It is often helpful to have more than one person to throw light on a subject....

Ms Soup