Thursday, December 13, 2012

The science of mirrors

Mirrors are talismans, soul catchers, psychic shields, places of encounter with beings from other worlds, and sometimes portals for crossings between the worlds.
    The great Turkish poet 
Asaf Halet Çelebi (1907-1958), who was at home in the mirror worlds, gives us a shiverish lesson in how this works. What follows is my own free translation; Çelebi awaits an adequate translator and little of his work is available in any version in English.

by Asaf Halet Çelebi.

An image rose before me in a mirror
something other than myself
I don’t know where she came from
this beautiful stranger,
maybe from China or beyond

I asked her, “Who are you?”
and she laughed at me.
“I am the daughter
of the Emperor of China
and I have loved you for a long time.”

I said, “Come, come from the mirror
beautiful thief of my reflection.
I don’t care if I have no image
as long as my hands can touch you
and prove you are real.”

The Emperor’s daughter said,
“I can’t come. But one day
I will swim your image
into the depths of this mirror
and we will vanish together.”

-          - Free translation by Robert Moss

     Ottoman intarsia hand mirror 17th century

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