Hereâ€™s the end of that story about the old woman who wanted
to lure a man with strange
cosmetics. She made a paste of pages from the Qurâ€™an to fill
the deep creases on her face and
neck with. This is not about an old woman, dear reader. Itâ€™s
about you, or anyone who tries
to use books to make themselves attractive. There she is,
sticking scripture, thick with
saliva, on her face. Of course, the bits keep falling off.
â€œThe devil,â€ she yells, and
he appears! â€œThis is a trick Iâ€™ve never seen. You donâ€™t need
me. You are yourself a troop
of demons!â€ So people steal inspired words to get compliments.
Donâ€™t bother. Death comes
and all talking, stolen or not, stops. Pity anyone unfamiliar
with silence when that happens.
Polish your heart with meditation and quietness. Let the inner
life grow generous and handsome
like Joseph. Zuleikha did that and her â€œold womanâ€™s spring
cold snapâ€ turned to mid-July. Dry
lips wet from within. Ink is not rouge. Let language lie
bygone. Now is where love breathes.