(Khalil Gibran, photograph by Fred Holland Day, c. 1898. wiki commons)
Khalil Gibran, April 1913
|Born||Jubran Khalil Jubran|
January 6, 1883
Bsharri, Mount Lebanon Mutasarrifate, Ottoman Syria(modern day Lebanon)
|Died||April 10, 1931 (aged 48)|
New York City, United States
|Occupation||Poet, painter, writer, philosopher,theologian, visual artist|
|Genres||Poetry, parable, short story|
|Literary movement||Mahjar, New York Pen League|
|Notable work(s)||The Prophet, Broken Wings|
The Prophet is a book of 26 prose poetry essays written in English by the Lebanese artist, philosopher and writer Kahlil Gibran. It was originally published in 1923 by Alfred A. Knopf. It is Gibran's best known work. The Prophet has been translated into over forty different languages and has never been out of print. (Wikipedia)
A friend of mine that I hadn't seen since high school gave me this book, (probably about two years ago now), she moved back to our home state from living out west for about a decade.The book was a gift to her from a boyfriend in her senior year of high school...I had never heard of it before and she mentioned that she thought I'd like it and that she'd found an extra copy at the local free section at the transfer station AKA "The Mall." Ha!
Any way...this collection is rich and deeply wise...it sits next to my copy of the Tao Te Ching because it feels similar in it's timeless wisdom.
It's the sort of writing that one might choose to digest in small portions...one can read it in a single sitting but in order to glean all the gems...little bites are best.
It's truly beautiful writing...
Here's a section that I find magical:
On Eating and Drinking
But since you must kill to eat, and rob the newly born of its mother's milk to quench your thirst, let it then be an act of worship.
And let your board stand an altar on which the pure and the innocent of forest and plain are sacrificed for that which is purer and still more innocent in man.
When you kill a beast say to him in your heart,
"By the same power that slays you, I too am slain; and I too shall be consumed.
For the law that delivered you into my hand shall deliver me into a mightier hand.
Your blood and my blood is naught but the sap that feeds the tree of heaven."
And when you crush an apple with your teeth, say to it in your heart,
"Your seeds shall live in my body,
And the buds of your tomorrow shall blossom in my heart,
And your fragrance shall be my breath,
And together we shall rejoice through all the seasons."
And in the autumn, when you gather the grapes of your vineyards for the winepress, say in your heart,
"I too am a vineyard, and my fruit shall be gathered for the winepress,
And like new wine I shall be kept in eternal vessels."
And in winter, when you draw the wine, let there be in your heart a song for each cup;
And let there be in the song a remembrance for the autumn days, and for the vineyard, and for the winepress....
Thank you for joining me in this moment for favo(u)rites to reflect on the talented gift of this particular poet.