Hope & Healing Through Photography and Poetic Expression

Posts tagged “empathy


“I wish I were like you,”
Said the forest
to the roaring river,
“Always traveling,
always sightseeing;

Rushing towards the pure domain
of the sea,
The kingdom of water;
The passionate, vigorous spirit
of life,
The liquid turquoise of light
With eternal flow …”

“But what am I?
Only a captive,
chained to the earth.
In silence I grow old,
In silence I wither and die,
And before long
nothing will remain of me
But a handful of ashes.”

“O forest, half-asleep, half-awake”,
Cried the river,
“I wish I were you,
Enjoying a seclusion
of living emerald,

And illuminated by moonlit nights;
Being a mirror
reflecting the beauties
of Spring;

A shaded rendezvous for lovers.”

“Your destiny, a new life
every year;
My life, running away from myself
all the time;
Running. running, running
in bewilderment;
And what is my gain
Of all this meaningless journey?
Ah … never having a moment of calm
and rest!”

“No one can ever know
what the other feels;
Who does care to ask
about a passer-by
If he really existed
or was only a shadow?”

Now a passer-by
Aimlessly walking in the shade
Comes to ask himself,
“Who am I? a river? a forest?
Or both?
River and forest?


Hope you enjoyed this wonderful story (and companion image of me listening to the
Forest and River converse 😉 ).
The piece is entitled Forest and River, written by
Jalal al-Din Rumi, with translation by Zhaleh Esfahani.

Much Love ~ Robyn Lee