The Robe

Il Commandatore

Robe without face.

A predator in waiting,
cover gave him a vantage.
After eons passed now,
ruse is all that remains,
instincts lost in the way.

A child with no home,
robe gave him a stay.
After eons passed now,
house is all that remains,
man passed away.

A performer too passionate,
veil allowed him a play.
After eons passed now,
mask is all that remains,
light dimmed away.

An angel without voice,
cloak gave him a say,
After eons passed now,
Words are all that remain,
source has parted the way.

An old monk in temperance,
cloud gave him a shade,
After eons passed now,
Shade is all that remains,
essence has lost the way.

A soul vagabond,
contours gave him a shape.
After eons passed now,
way is all that remains,
lines have faded away.

A body that’s naked,
world covered him at a place.
After eons passed now,
shroud is all that remains,
ashes melted away.

– Dedicated to the robes and faces, and lost essence behind them.

Art Reference:
Anna Chromy
IL Commendatore
Statue dedicated to a character in Mozart‘s Don Giovanni
City: Prague, Czech Republic
Extension of same work by artist is known as: ‘Cloak of Conscience‘.
It’s believed that sculpture projects the viewer’s conscience to them.

Image Credits:


12 thoughts on “The Robe

  1. Cloak of Conscience!
    ‘A predator in waiting,
    cover gave him a vantage.
    After eons passed now,
    ruse is all that remains,
    instincts lost in the way.’
    Vivid words, Sohani. A powerful play as always.

  2. very nice, once again, very nice. but i wonder brother, is your success as a poet going to your head? it seems you are now wearing a tuxedo!! well done Ali.

    • Dear Bob.
      You know the art of passing a subtle humor and tease in your writing, and call me a better writer; everyone can see my friend it is clearly not the case. 🙂 Though tux photograph is old, and it’s placed here in relation to the latest poem: “The Robe”. But come to think of it, point you made jokingly is what I myself is wondering about for last few weeks. It’s true, I’m not impermeable. Some of the fan love is indeed getting into the head. Perhaps, the primary reason I never sought the fame in first place. But that’s how fame works, I guess. It kinda replaces your essence with all the lustrous shine and splendid glimmer that’s unreal or one which certainly won’t last long. What would be more painful than to see an artist begin to loose the sense of imagination? What would be more vicious than a state where artist starts to see self from the perspective of recurring audience – loosing the originality in process?
      I do try my best to avoid it; reason why I’ve been keeping myself distant from a praise for past few days, in the process not replying to the blog comments. You might have noticed some last pieces have my struggle portrayed. But who knew my friend that you did hold the key to make me come out of my shell. I realize, I understand now the meaning of phrase, “Friends spoil you, but they also make you meet with yourself.” There’s nothing that I hope more than to be real and consistent. I hope friends like you will always keep me in check.
      Thank you for this. 🙂
      Your undeserving friend,

      P.S. I apologize for writing this in a letter format. But that’s what happens when you talk without the contours of fame. 😉

      • my dear Ali,

        i had just typed an enormously long reply, and with one wrong swipe of my hand, somehow erased it before i could finish and send. i will reply briefly as i am tired and need to get a little sleep. please know that i completely understand and experience the very struggle you are speaking of. and i wish i’d been more mindful of that before i most jokingly left that comment, which was not intended as anything more than a friendly tease. without having the energy to reinvent what i had painstakingly written and then lost, just let me say, it is ok my friend. it is all ok. accept the praise that comes to you with humility, but do accept it, as the ability to receive a gift is in itself an act of giving. yes, the blogging world is every bit as superficial and plastic as the real world, and most people are addicted to numbers of likes, follows, etc. but, and here is the deal – a small fraction of people do seem genuinely interested in each other, and are true to each other. you will notice that certain followers (god, i hate that word as it denotes some false sense of stardom) consistently read and respond. those people are not awe struck in the sense they put you on a pedestal. they, like me, are privileged to be part of your world, a part that hopefully contributes to your creative spirit. my friend, i do not comment where comment is not merited, and i do not give false flattery. i am genuinely interested in and appreciative of your work. and my life is enriched by yours and by a few others. so, the dilemma is – do you preserve your sense of humility and purity by remaining aloof and conflicted by the notice you get, thus driving yourself away from us, yet frustrating yourself further, or do you continue to write and share your gift while accepting whatever praise is given you as genuine and a gift from soul-to-soul? i’m not sure it is an either/or proposition, but this one thing is true: the nature of humility is such that it is so fragile that once we think we’ve grasped it, it is gone. so my brother (a term i use in the deepest possible sense), wear your tuxedo proudly!! let it shine the radiance of who you are and who you are created to be. yet wear it as though it were a suit of armor that protects you from all that pollutes the purity and integrity of who you determine yourself to be. in a nutshell, go through the struggle, but shake it off and write on. write for yourself and those you know who truly are enriched by your writing.

        and in a closing thought, i reflect on some of the comments of praise i’ve made, and realize how i left you know room to do anything that might not be considered great, which was an injustice not intended. do not worry that every writing is not as great as the ones before – allow yourself room to ebb and flow by sharing it all with us. some of my own pieces i’ve been most personally proud of have gotten zero response, while a few i considered not that great gotten the most notice. don’t worry my brother, everything falls into its proper place. peace for now.


        p.s. i know what you are thinking – “i’m glad i didn’t receive his long version.”

      • 😀 “I’m wondering what goodies were in store for me in a longer version.” Because I definitely enjoyed this. It’s natural, without restraints and flowing with intensity.
        Thank you Bob. For standing by and always supporting. Because of friends like you I’m encouraged to dwell in new dimensions without caring of any aftereffects. Because I know no matter what you guys will appreciate my attempt and humility. Your quip was taken as a friendly tease and now your suggestions are taken as a brotherly advice.
        Thank you again for everything!
        Peace to you brother! 🙂

      • what i said to you brother, flowed out of my own familiar existential struggle between writing out of the depth of my own truth and the hazards of being noticed. i have on numerous occasions come extremely close to deleting my blog altogether, but i wait and think it through, and usually the sincere comment of one the few readers who cares about me comes through to convince me otherwise. peace my brother, peace…

  3. Ok someone needs to address this annoying issue… Or maybe one is not welcomed to comment on this page… Your correspondence with Bob is what caught my attention, great advice: Nature of humility is such that it is so fragile that once we think we’ve grasped it, it is gone!
    Thank you.

    • “Once we think it’s grasped, it’s gone.” Very well said. 🙂
      What were you saying in your last comment…
      I am sorry for your troubles regarding the comment posting.
      I can assure you nothing’s deliberate at this end. 🙂

  4. THIS!
    “A soul vagabond,
    contours gave him a shape.
    After eons passed now,
    way is all that remains,
    lines have faded away.”
    This poem is marvelous.
    Please don’t write so good. 😦

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s