If you poked thorns into these streaming eyes,
Or shot cruel arrows at this hair-thin heart,
Or beat me like a drum, and beat again,
I wouldn't let you go, not even then.
#1916, from Rumi's Kolliyaat-e Shams-e Tabrizi
Edited by Badiozzaman Forouzanfar (Tehran, Amir Kabir, 1988).
Translated by Zara Houshmand
Zara Houshmand's features index
The Life Teachings and Poetry of Jalal al-Din Rumi
By Frankin D. Lewis
By Coleman Barks (Translator)