I, Lalla

· Poems · ,

by Lal Ded

Some run away from home, some escape the hermitage.
No orchard bears fruit for the barren mind.
Day and night, count the rosary of your breath,
and stay put wherever you are.

Hermit or householder: same difference.
If you’ve dissolved your desires in the river of time,
you will see that the Lord is everywhere and is perfect.
As you know, so shall you be.

Some, who have closed their eyes, are wide awake.
Some, who look out at the world, are fast asleep.
Some who bathe in sacred pools remain dirty.
Some are at home in the world but keep their hands clean.

 


From I, Lalla: The Poems of Lal Ded, translated by Ranjit Hoskote, Copyright © 2011 by Ranjit Hoskote, used by permission of Penguin Books.

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