Majnoon's Story

I fell in love with Layla, the king's daughter, but she was betrothed to the Prince of Light. I did not yet know that she was my soul, cast up out of sea-foam, already lying unveiled in the shell of my heart. So I became a wanderer, and went mad in the forest. Every bursting bud was her mouth. Every bee, stinging the wildflower, drank from my kiss.

I spun seasons with my yearning, turned Winter to Spring with my desire, bled under a pine, praying to meet her in death.

Now listen, friend, when you thirst enough for the Gift of her face, you will comprehend a way of inebriation that imbibes nothing but the nectar of moonlight: a way to make love with the eternal Virgin.

I call this way "bewilderment," because it takes place in the wild, through the pathless discipline of the forest. But you may call it a gushing wound.

Yes, this practice of hopeless longing opens my chest, where a fountain of darkness effuses the great final sigh, signifying that I have surrendered to the purity of No Restraint.

I don't care if you are not understanding this! The gash in my heart encompasses your misunderstanding as well as perfect knowledge, sucking in the entire universe, and the space beyond, like a black maelstrom of un-created gravity.

Now I drop from my body, a swollen berry on a withered vine. Pan's feet press me through the sieve of the earth, into a barrel made of oak, rosewood, and other trees from the center of the Garden.

"You aren't juice any more!" says my crusher. "That was for children and pretenders. I turn you into wine, so that those who get drunk on your songs will remember everything."

This is my story, lovers and friends. This is how a drop of sorrow can sweeten the whole cup!

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