One of the silliest, sweetest and surest things I have come upon, as a photographer, is how one time or another we have all shot flowers with our cameras. I have been a photographer for most of my life and they still bring joy and fun into my profession. Here, besides flowers are some other wonders from the plant kingdom.
The likeness of the life of the present is as the rain which We send down from the skies: by its mingling arises the produce of the earth-
which provides food for men and animals: (It grows) till the earth is clad with its golden ornaments and is decked out (in beauty):
the people to whom it belongs think they have all powers of disposal over it:
There reaches it Our command by night or by day, and We make it like a harvest clean-mown,
as if it had not flourished only the day before!
thus do We explain the Signs in detail for those who reflect.
The Holy Quran (10:24)
The seven heavens and the earth, and all beings therein,
declare His glory: there is not a thing but celebrates His praise;
And yet ye understand not how they declare His glory!
Verily He is Oft-Forbear, Most Forgiving!
The Holy Quran (17:44)
Do you want me to tell you a secret?
The flowers attract the most beautiful lover
With their sweet smile and scent.
If you let God weave the verse in your poem
People will read it forever.
Hazrat Maulana Jalaluddin Rumi r.a
He told the chamberlain of the morning breeze to spread out the emerald
carpet and, having commanded the nurse of vernal clouds to cherish
the daughters of plants in the cradle of the earth, the trees donned
the new year’s robe and clothed their breast with the garment of green
foliage, whilst their offspring, the branches, adorned their heads
with blossoms at the approach of the season of the roses. Also the
juice of the cane became delicious honey by his power, and the date
a lofty tree by his care.
Cloud and wind, moon and sun move in the sky
That thou mayest gain bread, and not eat it unconcerned.
For thee all are revolving and obedient.
It is against the requirements of justice if thou obeyest not.
There is a tradition of the prince of created beings, the paragon
of existing things, the mercy to the inhabitants of the world, the
purest of mankind and the completion of the revolving ages, Muhammad
the elect, upon whom be blessing and peace:
Intercessor, obeyed, prophet, gracious,
Bountiful, majestic, affable, marked with the seal of God.
The Gulistan or Rose Garden of Shaikh Sadi r.a - Translated by Edward Rehatsek
Lala’ay Sehra (Desert Flower)
This vast gray dome,
This eerie solitude,
And this unbounded wilderness,
Hold an uncanny fright for me.
I am a wanderer,
lost, Thou art a wanderer, too,
Dost thou know thy goal,
O desert flower Dost thou know thy goal?
These mounts and hills are empty,
Bereft of a vision-seeking Moses;
Though thou art a burning flame,
And I am a burning flame.
Why didst thou part from thy roots?
Why did I part from mine?
Was it the impulse to be born?
Was it the impulse to be unique?
May God take care of those
Who plunge into the ocean of love,
For every drop of the ocean
Has the ocean’s depth.
The whirlpool mourns the wave
Swallowed up in its abyss—
The wave that rose from the sea’s depths,
But never lapped against the shore.
It is man that has breathed life into this vacuous world,
The sun, the moon, and the stars,
Are silent, passive spectators O wild, wild wind!
Bestow on me thy silence,
Thy pain and thy passion,
Thy power and thy buoyancy.
Muhammad Allama Iqbal (1873-1938) “Poet of the East” (Bal-e-Jibril-141) Lala’ay Sehra
Dear Enigmatic Cactus,
Your humble ways to survive the desolate desert,
is a lesson worth remembering . ..
It’s so beautiful how,
despite it all,
you have learned to bloom with flowers,
in the worst of times.