بخش 39

کتاب: ملت عشق / فصل 39

بخش 39

توضیح مختصر

  • زمان مطالعه 7 دقیقه
  • سطح متوسط

دانلود اپلیکیشن «زیبوک»

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متن انگلیسی فصل

Aladdin

KONYA, DECEMBER 16, 1244

By the fates I wasn’t there when the dervish crossed my father’s path. I had gone deer hunting with several friends and came back only the next day. By then my father’s encounter with Shams of Tabriz was the talk of the town. Who was this dervish, people gossiped, and how come an erudite man like Rumi had taken him seriously, to the point of bowing down to him?

Ever since I was a boy, I had watched people kneel in front of my father and had never imagined that it could be any other way—that is, unless the other person was a king or a grand vizier. So I refused to believe half the things I heard and didn’t let the gossip get under my skin, until I arrived home and Kerra, my stepmother, who never lies and never exaggerates, confirmed the whole story. Yes, it was true, a wandering dervish named Shams of Tabriz had challenged my father in public, and, what’s more, he was now staying in our house.

Who was this stranger who had plummeted into our lives like a mysterious rock hurled from the sky? Eager to see him with my own eyes, I asked Kerra, “So where is this man?” “Be quiet,” Kerra whispered, a little nervously. “Your father and the dervish are in the library.”

We could hear the far hum of their voices, though it was impossible to make out what they were talking about. I headed in that direction, but Kerra stopped me.

“I am afraid you will have to wait. They asked not to be disturbed.”

For the whole day, they didn’t come out of the library. Neither the next day nor the one following. What could they possibly be talking about? What could someone like my father and a simple dervish have in common?

A week passed, then another. Every morning Kerra prepared breakfast and left it on a tray in front of their door. No matter what delicacies she prepared for them, they refused it all, content with only a slice of bread in the morning and a glass of goat’s milk in the evening.

Perturbed, jittery, I was grabbed by an ill mood during this period. At various hours throughout the day, I tried every hole and crack in the door to peep inside the library. Never minding what would happen if they suddenly opened the door and found me eavesdropping there, I spent a lot of time hunched over, trying to comprehend what they were talking about. But all I could hear was a low murmuring. I couldn’t see much either. The room was shadowy, on account of the curtains being half closed. Without much to see or hear, I allowed my mind busily to fill in the silences, fabricating the conversations they must be having.

Once Kerra found me with my ear to the door, but she didn’t say anything. By this time she was more desperate than I to learn what was going on. Women can’t help their curiosity; it is in their nature.

But it was a different story when my brother, Sultan Walad, caught me eavesdropping. He gave me a burning look, his face turning sour.

“You have no right to spy on other people, especially not on your father,” he reprimanded.

I shrugged. “Honestly, brother, doesn’t it bother you that our father spends his time with a stranger? It has been more than a month now. Father has brushed his family aside. Doesn’t that upset you?” “Our father hasn’t brushed anyone aside,” my brother said. “He found a very good friend in Shams of Tabriz. Instead of nagging and complaining like a toddler, you should be happy for our father. If you truly love him, that is.” That was the sort of thing only my brother could say. I was used to his peculiarities, so I did not take umbrage at his scathing remarks. Always the nice boy, he was the darling of the family and the neighborhood, my father’s favorite son.

Exactly forty days after my father and the dervish had cloistered themselves in the library, something strange happened. I was crouched at the door again, eavesdropping on a thicker silence than usual, when all of a sudden I heard the dervish speak up.

“It has been forty days since we retreated here. Every day we discussed another of The Forty Rules of the Religion of Love. Now that we are done, I think we’d better go out. Your absence might have upset your family.” My father objected. “Don’t worry. My wife and sons are mature enough to understand that I might need to spend some time away from them.”

“Well, I don’t know anything about your wife, but your two boys are as different as night and day,” Shams responded. “The older one walks in your footsteps, but the younger one, I am afraid, marches to a different drummer altogether. His heart is darkened with resentment and envy.” My cheeks burned with anger. How could he say such awful things about me when we hadn’t even met?

“He thinks I don’t know him, but I do,” said the dervish a little while later. “While he was crouching with his ear to the door, watching me through peepholes, I was watching him, too.” I felt a sudden chill pass across me as every hair on my arms stood on end. Without giving it another thought, I thrust the door open and stomped into the room. My father’s eyes widened with incomprehension, but it didn’t take long for his shock to be replaced by anger.

“Aladdin, have you lost your mind? How dare you disturb us like this!” my father thundered.

Ignoring that question, I pointed at Shams and exclaimed, “Why don’t you first ask him how he dares to talk about me like that?”

My father didn’t say a word. He just looked at me and drew in a deep breath, as if my presence were a heavy burden on his shoulders.

“Please, Father, Kerra misses you. And so do your students. How can you turn your back on all your loved ones for a lousy dervish?”

As soon as those words came out of my mouth, I regretted them, but it was too late. My father stared at me with disappointment in his eyes. I had never seen him like this before.

“Aladdin, do yourself a favor. Get out of here—this minute,” my father said. “Go into a quiet place and think about what you did. Do not talk to me until you have looked inside and recognized your mistake.” “But, Father—”

“Just get out!” my father repeated, turning away from me.

With a sinking heart, I left the room, my palms wet, my knees trembling.

At that moment it dawned upon me that in some incomprehensible way our lives had changed, and nothing would be the same again. Since the death of my mother eight years ago, this was the second time I had felt abandoned by a parent.

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