Professor Mumtaz Hussain says that the language of poetry is distinguished from the logic of language because the poetic discourse lends a certain carnal quality to the image. (Ghalib, Ek Mutalaa, Anjuman Taraqi-e-Urdu, Karachi, 1969, p.15). He is not speaking of poetry about the body. It is not carnality but the embodiment itself rising from the lines eg Nos antiques jeunesses/ Chaire mate et belle ombre, / Sont fieres des finesses/Qui naisses par les nombres; (Valery, Cantiques des Colonnes). (Our antique youths, lazy flesh, beautiful shades, so proud of subtleties, which are born of numbers.) Here the image breaks out of the page to confront the reader, to invite him to introspection. Why is it that one thinks of one's youth only in old age? Maybe, when young, one is so busy thinking of others that he has no time to think of himself, of his youth. It is only in advanced years, when the body starts becoming bothersome that one turns one's attention to it and its condition. On the other hand, there are lines where one feels as if one is standing beside a shambles, watching the butcher carving the meat, limb by limb, piece by piece. For example, the sola singhar or sixteen arts of maquillage start with the explanation: "Each woman should have four long things, four small, four lean and four plump. Then she will look pretty. This has been lifted from folk poetry of Sindh. It may sound slightly common. But it is more natural than some of Sindh's classical verse, which had yet to emerge from the strait-jacket of Sufism. There Sassui, searching for her love by following his foot-prints through the woods and the deserts, must, poor thing, yield lessons of persistence on one side and be a symbol of the restlessness of soul on the other. Sometimes one wonders how Shah Abdul Latif's poetry can be bent to these images. Why can't we recognise the sanctity of carnal love? Actually the Sindhi folk poetry, much older than the classics, is not ashamed of the body, or of the bodily passions. Sufism, though of Aryan origin, assumed its present form in Abbasid Fertile Crescent and, thus, carries the Semitic notion of Original Sin. However, in poetry, we should not overlook the two aspects of every character. Sassui may have been the soul in search of the Absolute but she was also a woman looking for the man who had enchanted her. True Sufism can be liberating too. But often it is primarily "internal liberation", the believer liberating himself from the chains of materiality. ("Sassui, don't ask for guidance from anyone, they find the beloved who have him in the heart. Shah.) As if the man can experience any existence in a material world other than one conditioned by its materiality. In fact, Sassui is most attractive not when standing forth as the symbol of some great idea but when she cries out: "I do not know this wilderness. Nor do I carry a drop of water with me. The mountains before me frighten me and the sun and hot wind burn me. Beloved, I am so alone. Come to me." Here the logic of language is subdued completely by the poetic discourse. Here the image stands out in its carnal splendour. The writer is a former ambassador