In what state was I

by Darshan Singh

English version by Barry Lerner and Harbans Singh Bedi
Original Language Urdu

Who knows, in what state was I when I met her eyes?
Where, who was I? Completely lost.

For you that sun and that moon are gaudy snares:
Beware, lest caught, your gaze rise no higher.

My love -- the paradise at my journey's end -- is annoyed.
Why does every path seem so lonesome?

Impetuous tipplers, have regard for the goblets and cups!
As you journey through the world of hearts, step gently.

My madness knows why, nightlong, desperate with sorrow,
I rush about with tearful eyes, embracing shadows.

I follow no guide, no creed -- just an inkling of the way:
A tug at my heart leads me forward.

Friends, we must not let the darkness enshroud us again!
So many kissed the gallows before we saw this dawn.

When beauty herself provokes a look, therein lies the thrill:
Were she not so expectant, what would compel my eyes?

Darshan, life is the confluence of reality and dream:
In this union lies the exaltation of a human being.

-- from Love's Last Madness: Poems on a Spiritual Path by Darshan Singh, Translated by Barry Lerner / Translated by Harbans Singh Bedi

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In what state was I