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A Rose, Shrouded

by Sallyj 

Posted: 16 August 2011
Word Count: 94
Summary: This is my first attempt at the Persian poetic form, the Ghazal...hence the subject matter.

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Take a rose then shroud it with drab cotton.
Is this the way we repay Godís bounty?

Cut off the bloom and hide it behind walls.
Is this the way to recognise Godís beauty?

Bleed the poppy to enslave the people.
Is this the way God wants us to behave?

Cut out tongues that voice all female wisdom.
Is this why God created Eve?

Cage the mothers then expect accomplished children.
Is this how God envisaged family?

Blindfold half a nation,destroy their hearts,their souls.
My God weeps at the way we use His word.

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Comments by other Members

Sallyj at 12:36 on 19 August 2011  Report this post
James, thank you for spending so much time on this - Ghazals are interesting aren't they? As so often happens though, the move from one culture to another complicates the process of writing.I particularly wanted a Persian form to include in a collection and this is the one I chose.
I think you are right about introducing some rhyme to my effort to underline the thoughts so I will work on that - internal rhyme especially, as you suggest, that works so well for Agha Shahid Ali.
The one aspect of the form that I could not include was a personalisation of the last line...the use of 'my' had to suffice.
Thanks again for the work you have done and for your helpful comments.

James Graham at 14:15 on 20 August 2011  Report this post
Thanks to you too, Sally - you've widened my horizons. The more I read, and read about, ghazals the more interesting they become. It does seem to be a form that can be very strict but also flexible - unlike the sonnet, perhaps. You do find unrhymed or partially rhymed sonnets, and sonnets with shorter lines, breaking the rules of the strict form, but they often leave you with the impression that here's someone who can't do a proper sonnet. Not so with the ghazal, I think. It leaves more scope for variation and technical invention. If I can hit on a good subject, I'd like to try one!


Sallyj at 15:17 on 20 August 2011  Report this post
I hope you post your effort when you write it - I would like to read it very much. Good luck Ghazaling!

clyroroberts at 21:31 on 24 August 2011  Report this post
Thanks for bringing this form to my attention. I've been digging around the web researching ghazals too. Very interesting.

I can only admire any poet willing to try such a seemingly complex form. Well done.

I did find Merwin's The Causeway somewhere and thought it fabulous but I seem to have misplaced the link.

Sallyj at 16:41 on 26 August 2011  Report this post
I'll look for The Causeway - thanks for the suggestion. I fuiond the Ghazal intriguing - glad it inspired you too.

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