On Love

Kahlil Gibran on Love:

“When love beckons to you, follow him

Though his ways are hard and steep

And when his wings enfold you, yield to him

Though the sword hidden among his pinions may wound you

And when he speaks to you believe in him

Though his voice may shatter your dreams as the north wind lays waste the garden

For even as love crowns you so shall he crucify you

Even as he is for your growth so is he for your pruning

Even as he ascends to your height and caresses your tenderest branches that quiver in the sun

So shall he descend to your roots and shake them in their clinging to the earth

Like sheaves of corn he gathers you unto himself

He threshes you to make you naked

He sifts you to free you from your husks

He grinds you to whiteness

He kneads you until you are pliant

And then he assigns you to his sacred fire, that you may become sacred bread for God’s sacred feast

All these things shall love do unto you that you may know the secrets of your heart, and in that knowledge become a fragment of Life’s heart

But if in your fear you would seek only love’s peace and love’s pleasure

Then it is better for you that you cover your nakedness and pass out of love’s threshing-floor

Into the seasonless world where you shall laugh, but not all of your laughter, and weep, but not all of your tears

Love gives naught but itself and takes naught but from itself

Love possesses not nor would it be possessed

For love is sufficient unto love

When you love you should not say, “God is in my heart,” but rather, “I am in the heart of God”

And think not you can direct the course of love, for love, if it finds you worthy, directs your course

Love has no other desire but to fulfill itself

But if you love and must needs have desires, let these be your desires:

To melt and be like a running brook that sings its melody to the night

To know the pain of too much tenderness

To be wounded by your own understanding of love

And to bleed willingly and joyfully

To wake at dawn with a winged heart and give thanks for another day of loving

To rest at the noon hour and meditate love’s ecstasy

To return home at eventide with gratitude

And then to sleep with a prayer for the beloved in your heart and a song of praise upon your lips”


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