Eastern wisdom

Let’s see if Captain Tandy
has anything to add
to the testimony given
by the Prince of Ishfahad:

Did you see a camel
steaming through the souk,
like ‘a bolt of lightning’
or, as some say, ‘a truck’?

— There are no words that can describe
the mysteries of the East:
a camel steaming through a souk
must rank among the least.

I can’t deny I saw it,
though I’m not sure that I did.
Some things out East are quite opaque
while others are quite hid.

— But come now, Captain Tandy,
you must help the court decide:
‘truck ‘or ‘bolt of lightning’
— which simile applies?

I have no truck with similes,
and lightning’s just as bad,
but a wise man doesn’t contradict
the Prince of Ishfahad.


 

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