Symbiosis - Ghazals

(1998-2002)

piero scaruffi


Dedication

Ich kann mich an keinen meiner Traeume erinnern,
aber ich werde mich immer an Dich erinnern,
Und wenn Zeit die Frage stellen wird,
wirst Du meine Antwort sein.

(I cannot remember any of my dreams,
but i will remember you forever,
and when Time will ask the question,
you will be my answer).

When i hold you in my arms,

i am everything i want to be.

Your smile is my heart.
They beat together.

Every time i think of you, i am.

I came to the appointment

that we made before we were born.
A shining ring of dust bleeds
over the rim of the eclipse.
The other, solemn, word
sails from the gables of my mind
to the dream that you nurture
with the lilies and the roses.
And you were waiting for me,
dressed for the journey
that we had not planned;
dressed for the ride
that will never take you back. And i think of you
before you were born,
up there with the stars,
when you were only a smile
with no body, as your heart
was beginning to listen
to the confusing voices of the world,
as your mind was beginning to learn

that anywhere at all
is somewhere else instead;
that anything can happen
and most likely it has;
that everything is never the same,
that it dissolves all the time
into something else;
that here is not truly here,
it is always a little
somewhere else
(I have never truly
been here
even if i am here
all the time);
that one can never find
the trail back
to the beginning of life,
because it keeps changing face
and never lets you see
your own;

light at once emptying the space
that had stored so much meaning,
and the first feeble sparks
from your sleepy eyes
unraveling your new limbs
in that warm nest of life,
fearing so much more the unknown
that made you feel so small.

You spoke to me
an ancestral language
that only we remember
and comprehend, strangers
in every land, an alphabet
not of mere symbols,
but of gleaming talismans.

Thank you for coming to me
from the darkness of the soul
that has no name, like a prayer,
more ancient than a sun,
from the tide that swept
so many words away
into that ocean of smiles.
I cannot conceive the lightness
of your whisper, i can only
wander, blindfolded, in the maze
of your feelings, and catch a faint
glimpse of the future flickering
in the palm of your hand;
and wait for your fingers
to find mine, and forsake
the divided sea of time
that has carried our shadows
and now relents its grip and lingers
purposeless like a swamp.

I don't remember much
of my previous life, except
that i wanted to remember
to remember you.
There is no name
for the darkness
i came from.
There is no future for us
but there was no past either.
Maybe our lives do not occur
in time, but rather in a different
substance, dimension or universe,
and then are mirrored in time
so that people can tell them.
We do not live, for that matter:
we are lived by each other.
It is not what we are,
but what each is to the other.
We are one undivided self
which time perceives as two.
The mind bent the tall stalks
and dug paths among them.
We walked along those furrows,
sown with hues of rainbows.
We hid for months
in a cave of sky.
Whenever the world failed us
and we were left alone,
we felt at home.
I shall learn
how not to be me,
and still be.
Something else:
a sky, a comet,
an island in a lake,
a shell in the sand
that hums to the moon...
(We shall meet again
where we will be waiting
for each other, between
my past and your future).
I shall talk to you forever
until you reply, because i know
that you are the answer. The wave that undoes my footprints
is another gloss to that question.

I have become a smile
that only smiles when you smile.


Through your eyes i can see the other side.

It is not the darkness that i have feared all my life.
It is rings of light that blind.
It is more earths and skies,
more shores for waves to comb,
more sunsets for moons to climb.
And more flowers for you to breath,
and more suns for you to smile.
And more words for me to write of you.
And more paths for me to follow you.

The night sky is full of you,

of the mystery of your pupils,
of the allure of your lips,
of your coy silence,
of your timid steps.
The night is a flower,
the stars are its petals.
And you are the light
that makes them so bright.

I raise my head
to see you sail
with the skies.
To see you
never and forever.

Everything that shines is you.

I walk on tip toe to your bed,

tenderly kiss your soft warm cheeks,
quietly open the fingers of your fist,
and drop a tear in your palm.

Something of me will travel with you
wherever your dreams may take you:
so now i too can fall asleep
and not feel alone anymore.

I dream that i shall dream with you

the longest dream of your life. What were
all those unlikely destinations for
if not to prove that you are
the ultimate destination?
I always outdid my fate,
i shall outlast my fate.

Lovers are limits
fulfilling each other,
mottos inscribed
into each other's emblem.

The mind is smaller
than the moment
when i will see you again
What is life if not the waiting?

Thanks for the world

that your smiles revealed to me.
Thanks for your heart, sweeter
than sun. Thanks for the moments
that changed the meaning of time.
Thanks for the joy that i saw
in the mandala of your eyes.
Thanks for letting me play
the game that we invented.
Thank you for the tears
that stained my sweater,
and the whispers of hope
that still ring in my ears.

Is the leaf that falls from the branch

aware of the ground, aware that its life
was manufactured from earth by roots?
Is the reed that shivers in the wind aware
that the seed of its birth was planted
by a previous coming of the same wind?
Why does everything live without knowing
the nature of its nature, while we know
without living, feeble relics of our pitiful
past and premonitions of our dreadful future?
Why does everything have meaning for us?
How can the mere possibility of sadness
overcome the certainty of happiness?
How can we be less than our feelings?
How can you be less than us?

I met a silent star,

a shy smile, alone and adrift
in the vast tide of the night.

I was frightened, because you were
everywhere i looked, an entire sky
and not just a point in the sky.
I started dreaming the endless dream
of a nowhere which is everywhere.
My eyes found shelter in your eyes.

Soon i realized that the dream
was not a dream, but another world,
where questions are easier to answer.
I had to choose, and the choice
was between you and life, between
an infinite else and a finite self.
The light that had guided me to you,
that i had inherited from the gods,
was now pointing towards me, brighter;
the voices were so loud, so inside,
so me. On one hand, i had all, i had
me. On the other, there was only you.

What else could i see that i have not
seen in you? I have made my choice,
because i had no choice. What could i
be if not a faint shadow of your being?
Time still calls my name, in a language
that i will never understand; and then
yours, in a language that i understand.
I have made my choice because you will
always be the place where i was going to.

I have made my choice. Because,
even if i haven't found the question,
I know that you are the answer.

The heart of the woman who loves me

is a flower that unfolds petal by petal
as the days and nights bring her
new joy and new hope for her love.
The heart of the woman who loves me
is a butterfly whose wings flutter
as the breeze lifts her face towards mine.

We are not the end,

just like we never were
the beginning. We live
inside a fairy tale
that was told before we met
and will still be told
after we part.

Everything helped us meet
and everything wants us
to part. Everything happened
only for us to meet and become
one voice, one sigh.
We are the purpose
of all the beginnings
and becomings. You are
the miraculous ending
to all stories.

And your smile remains.

After the dinners, the walks,
the jokes have all faded
in the cluttered warehouses of memory,
your smile settles in my eyes.
A tender caress still flows
down every fiber of my body.
My eyes still wander into yours.
Your head rests against mine,
and i follow its shadow,
unfolding on my chest.
I grab your hand
and whisper.
You smile inside me.
You smile.

The mystery of what drew us together,

the substance, the process, the inevitable
thread that bound us like pages of the same book
is still flowing through the valleys of your hair
and springing from the curls of your lips.
We never stopped wondering about the place,
the way we stopped thinking about the time.

Every arrival is also a departure.

You learned by trial and error
that you cannot just arrive:
you will also have to depart.
I travel through the silence
of this "here" that is "me"
and "my" story seems to be
just this very brief silence
between two eternal silences
each the echo of the other.
My "here" seems to be a point
between two endless elsewheres.
You do not even know, but you are
in the same place at the same time
when the two silences at last speak
to each other and to us, lulled
in the contradiction of voices
that we think are ours, "here",
and, instead, are theirs, elsewhere.

Heaven is in our minds.
It is there all the time.
A shape within a larger shape,
like the last ring in the water
after the flat stone has sunk;
the ring that travels faster
and deeper, only to disappear
before reaching any destination;
a motion that caused no motion,
only an ephemeral thread of foam.

The world is only two birds
that fall one into the orbit
of the other as the air current
exhales their wakes into the sun.

Life is singular and plural,
and, ultimately, superfluous.

You will hum forever

inside your spiral shell
for me to unearth you
and recognize the sound
that, at an earlier time,
lured me into this trip
from the very same beach.

The emerald bubble of your eye

reflects me like a mirror. I am
what you are. I sing to myself
a tune that is you. I think
thoughts that emanates from you.
And knowing it is also you.

Does it count as a pilgrimage

when you are searching not for God
but for Love, not for omnipotent
power but for omnipotent weakness?

Is it a quest when, day after day,
you are not running towards it
but as far as you can from it?

Am i a believer for not believing
in life nor death, and for cherishing
the notion that nothing, ever,
will exist besides you and me?

Some day you will disappear

and i will miss you forever,
just like i missed you before.
So little will be left for me,
but so much will remain
of what is gone forever.
You will always be so near,
you will always be here;
every minute you will be
in every beat of my heart.
A tiny spark of your smile,
left behind to tease my mind,
will still be enough to dream
of us holding hands in the dark,
of you breathing from my mouth,
of me quivering inside you,
of you whispering breathless
to the symphony of our silence,
of my fingers opening one by one
the soft petals of your skin,
of we listening to our bodies
utter what we meant.

Is this memory of you

something that i have won
or something that i forever lost?

We thought that winter

would never end. But it did.
I emerged blind but sober.
Your voice enticed me
into the crib of spring.
Hopeless, i swallowed
days like hard medicine.

Tides of tenderness embrace me,
hum inside my being; but you're
still staring at the threshold
that you had to cross, again,
on your way home, one more time
on your way to an evil elsewhere
that we still cannot comprehend.

We will, perhaps, understand
afterwards, after life's seamless
ocean will have erased our feelings
and provided new stories for us.
We, perhaps, will understand
that some flowers bloom dead.
(What really hurts
is not the uncertainty:
it is the certainty
that one of these poems
will be left unfinished,
and you'll never read it).
Life, after all, blind as it is,
is more than an arbitrary repertory
of symbols, a never-ending riddle.
That we do not know what else it is
does not mean it is not "it".
Like drops falling in a cave
visited by dry winds, we sense,
even if we hardly know, the truth.

Just a little bit of you
is so much of me.

I do not remember what it is like
to live unaware that you exist.
I guess i have always known
that you exist. I guess the world
without you is not a world.

Every day, it is a long ride
till tomorrow. Every tomorrow,
it is a long ride till today.
Year after year, you keep a diary
of all the places where you have been.
Then, one day, you realize that,
actually, you have not been drawing
the route to the end of your trip,
but you have painted piecemeal
the place from which you departed.

If nothing else, the places
that we see are not what we are,
but what we have been.
When we part,
let us remember
to state the inevitable
truth of life,
to release the trap
that held us together
for so many cantos:
we did not exist;
we merely dreamed
each other; we merely
slept all the way
to the destination.
When we wake up,
let us not forget
that we were sleeping,
lest the pleasure
of waking up still
holding each other's hand
should send us back
to the beginning
of our journeys.
There will be no end,
only signs of the end;
and what was never meant to be
instead will forever be. (I have been saying goodbye
to you since i was born.
I wiped all my tears
before i met you.
You are all those tears.
I invented you so that
you could invent me).
May i borrow your smile
to measure eternity?