Sunday, March 19, 2017

Carpe Diem #1175 Theme Week Hafiz (1) potted plant


Dear Haijin, visitors and travelers,

Welcome at the first episode of the Theme Week (new style) in which I bring a week of specific prompts. This Theme Week I love to share only poems by Hafiz and maybe tell you something more about his background, but that's not certain as I am creating this episode.

This Carpe Diem month we have read already beautiful poems by Hafiz and I hope this week will bring you all a little bit more beauty by Hafiz. As you could have read in the earlier posts this month the Persian people often seek answers for their questions in the poems of Hafiz ... so maybe the poems in this Theme Week will give you answers on questions or thoughts you have. If that's what is going to happen than I am glad ... I think the spirit of Hafiz moves around here at CDHK and maybe he will give you the answers you need, but mostly this week is meant to bring the beauty of Hafiz's poems closer to you.

potted plants to decorate the fench
The first poem for this Theme Week is titled "potted plant" and it is taken from "The Subject Tonight Is Love", translated by Daniel Ladinsky.

In this poem we can read how Hafiz is honoring and praising God by taking care of a the earth. In this poem that "potted plant" is synonymous with caring for and cherishing the Earth. He praises the beauty of the moon ... she ... my love too.

A Potted Plant
I pull a sun from my coin purse each day.

And at night I let my pet the moon
Run freely into the sky meadow.

If I whistled,
She would turn her head and look at me.

If I then waved my arms,
She would come back wagging a marvelous
Of stars.

There are always a few men like me
In this world
Who are house-sitting for God.
We share His royal duties:
I water each day a favorite potted plant
Of His--
This earth.
Ask the Friend for love.
Ask Him again.
For I have learned that every heart will get
What it prays for

© Hafiz (or Hafez) taken from:  'The Subject Tonight Is Love' Translated by Daniel Ladinsky

Persian nature (photo found on Pinterest)
What can this poem mean, is there an answer for your questions? Let me take a closer look at this poem. As I read and re-read this poem than I read a song of praise for our Creator. In a way in this poem Hafiz shows us the beauty of the creation, and that we have to care for it.
In this poem I also read that our Creator loves us and cherishes us and that He will give us what we need. The earth provides us with all we need, we have to take care of her ... That's a very important issue by the way nowadays.

I could ask the following question: "What can we do to take care of our surroundings, our neighborhood? And ... read this poem again and it gives me the right answer. So ... this is maybe what the Persian (Iranian) people experience as the ask their questions ...

Well ... a poem with a message I would say, a message to us all ... "take care of Mother Nature" and I think that we, haiku poets, can bring that message too. Haiku is ... the poetry of nature.

I dived into my archives and made a little "gathering" of haiku and tanka that fits this poem by Hafiz I think.

wandering through the woods
no paved paths to walk on
bare footed I feel
in the arms of nature
resting like a little child -
scent of fallen leaves

as far as I can see
the blue sea surrounded by mountains
black like the night
 © Chèvrefeuille
Aurora Borealis (photo found on Pinterest)
sign of the gods
the night painted in thousand colors -
cracking snow
reflects the 'dance of the spirits'
aurora borealis
rustling bamboo -
song of a Nightingale fades away
a new day rises
in the mystery of the dawn
the sound of rain

© Chèvrefeuille
I hope I have inspired you with this post.

This episode is open for your submissions tonight at 7.00 PM (CET) and will remain open until March 24th at noon (CET). I will try to publish our new episode, lover, later on.


  1. I had just come in from potting some flowers to surround my little patio when I read this prompt. As we say here in the states, you hit the nail on the head with this prompt today!

  2. I like the idea of us "house-sitting for God"! I'm going to an agriculture summit this week and am thinking of stewardship.