If you remember me, then I don’t care if everyone else forgets. Time weighs down on you like an old, ambiguous dream. You keep on moving, trying to slip through it. But even if you go to the ends of the earth, you won’t be able to escape it. Still, you have to go there – to the edge of the world. There’s something you can’t do unless you get there. ~ Haruki Murakami (Photo by Tim Walker)
Run my dear, from anything that may not strengthen your precious budding wings. Run like hell, my dear, from anyone likely to put a sharp knife into the sacred, tender vision of your beautiful heart. ~ Hafiz
One morning, the Mongol warrior, Genghis Khan, and his court went out hunting. His companions carried bows and arrows, but Genghis Khan carried on his arm his favorite falcon, which was better and surer than any arrow, because it could fly up into the skies and see everything that human beings could not.
However, despite the group’s enthusiastic efforts, they found nothing. Disappointed, Genghis Khan returned to his encampment and in order not to take out his frustration on his companions, he left the rest of the party and rode on alone. They had stayed in the forest for longer than expected, and Khan was desperately tired and thirsty. In the summer heat, all the streams had dried up, and he could find nothing to drink. Then, to his amazement, he saw a thread of water flowing from a rock just in front of him.
He removed the falcon from his arm, and took out the silver cup which he always carried with him. It was very slow to fill, and just as he was about to raise it to his lips, the falcon flew up, plucked the cup from his hands, and dashed it to the ground.
Genghis Khan was furious, but then the falcon was his favorite, and perhaps it, too, was thirsty. He picked up the cup, cleaned off the dirt, and filled it again. The cup was only half full this time. The falcon again attacked it, spilling the water.
Genghis Khan adored this bird, but he knew that he could not, under any circumstances, allow such disrespect; someone might be watching this scene from afar and, later on, would tell his warriors that the great conqueror was incapable taming a mere bird.
This time, he drew his sword, picked up the cup and refilled it, keeping one eye on the stream and the other on the falcon. As soon as he had enough water in the cup and was ready to drink, the falcon again took flight and flew toward him. Khan, with one thrust, pierced the bird’s breast.
The thread of water, however, had dried up; but Khan, determined now to find something to drink, climbed the rock on search of the spring. To his surprise, there really was a pool of water and, in the middle of it, dead, lay one of the most poisonous snakes in the region. If he had drunk the water, he too, would have died.
Khan returned to camp with the dead falcon in his arms. He ordered a gold figurine of the bird to be made and on one of the wings, he had engraved:
Even when a friend does something you do not like,
he continues to be your friend.
And on the other wing, he had these words engraved:
Any action committed in anger is an action
doomed to failure.
Like The River Flowing