Wednesday, 31 August 2011


Only you
I choose among the entire world.
Is it fair of you
letting me be unhappy?
My heart is a pen in your hand.
It is all up to you
to write me happy or sad.
I see only what you reveal
and live as you say.
All my feelings have the color
you desire to paint.
From the beginning to the end,
no one but you.
Please make my future
better than the past.
When you hide I change
to a Godless person,
and when you appear,
I find my faith.
Don't expect to find
any more in me
than what you give.
Don't search for
hidden pockets because
I've shown you that
all I have is all you gave.
~ Rumi
Trans Nader Khalili

I hear the murmur Of the brook In my empty Rumi

I hear the murmur
Of the brook
In my empty heart,
Yet I glide in the water
As the fish.

I am the river bed
The ocean
Where the river ends.
I fly with the wind as the clouds,
Yet I am the cloudless sky.

I orbit the glorious one
As the earth around the sun
Yet behold,
For the sun and the stars,
Their light I bestow upon them

All glory to my bounteousness
Vast and open as the space,
The endless silence
Of the universe.
So remember me,
And bow with the cosmos
That prostrates itself
At my feet.

Beg with me,
Me, the dust under His foot,
For a glance from Him,
The Truth sublime,
The king of all that is,
In his shining Endlessness.

~ Rumi

Saturday, 27 August 2011

Become free of this whole world Like Hafiz....! by Hafiz

Let thought become the beautiful Woman.
Cultivate your mind and heart to that depth

That it can give you everything a warm body can.
Why just keep making love with God's child ?

When the Friend Himself is standing
Before us so open-armed ?

My dear,
Let prayer become your beautiful Lover

And become free,
Become free of this whole world

Like Hafiz....!

~ Hafiz

Friday, 26 August 2011

O Friend, the flag of your love flies Rumi

O Friend,
the flag of your love flies forever,
Never comes down.
The one who doesn't have Love
is lost and deprived.

The wind of Your love is calling
from the essence Of all existence,
"My greatness brought you Back to life.
My greatness is greater than great."

Love is the foundation, the essence of our lives.
The one who runs away from love
and goes to the other shady place
is the one who is deprived.

How lucky is the one
who could read them; such writings
Have been written on the face of the lover.

O one who is submerged in all this trouble
And is frowning, for his sake watch me
And listen to my words.

O one who follows the desire of self,
lowers his mind And falls down;
be sure that the fastest way to ascend
To exaltation is to lower the Self.

O one who was involved with the beloved
and forgot his livelihood,
Beloved is more than enough for support,
For a defender for you.

~ Rumi

Divan-i Kebir
Meter 4
Verse 2331

Honesty is better than a false Rumi

When you say,
"I'm ignorant: teach me,"

such honesty is better
than a false reputation.

Learn from your father Adam,
O clear-browed man:

he said, "O our Lord"
and "We have done wrong."

He made no excuses,
nor did he invent lies,

nor did he lift up
the banner of evasion.

~ Rumi
-- Mathnawi IV: 1388-1390
Version by Camille and Kabir Helminski
"Rumi: Jewels of Remembrance"
Threshold Books, 1996
Art by Boz Vakhshori

Thursday, 25 August 2011

One regret, dear world, not to Hafiz

One regret, dear world,
That I am determined
not to have

When I am
lying on my deathbed

Is that
I did not
kiss you enough.

~ Hafiz

When no one is Hafiz

When no one is looking,
I swallow deserts and clouds
and chew on mountains
knowing they are sweet bones !

When no one is looking
and I want to kiss Beloved,
I just lift my own hand to my mouth.

~ Hafiz

This place where you are right now God circled on a map for Hafiz

This place where you are right now
God circled on a map for you.

Wherever your eyes and arms and heart can move
Against the earth and the sky,
The Beloved has bowed there -

Our beloved has bowed there knowing
You were coming.

I could tell you a priceless secret about
Your real worth, dear pilgrim,

But any unkindness to yourself,
Any confusion about others,

Will keep one
From accepting the grace, the love,

The sublime freedom
Divine knowledge always offers to you.

Never mind, Hafiz, about
The great requirements this path demands
Of the wayfarers,

For your soul is too full of wine tonight
To withhold the wondrous Truth from this world.

But because I am so clever and generous,
I have already clearly woven a resplendent lock
Of his tresses

As a remarkable truth and gift
In this poem for you.

~ Hafiz

Tuesday, 23 August 2011

Whoever enters this House..... by Rumi

Why is there always music in this house?
Ask the owner.

Idols inside the Kaaba?
God's light in a pagan temple?

Here is a treasure
this world could not contain.
The house and its landlord
are all pretext and play.

Hands off this house, this talisman.
Don't argue with the landlord;
he's drunk every night.

The dirt and garbage are musk and rose.
The roof and door are music and verse.
In short, whoever finds this house,
is ruler of the world, Solomon of his time.

Look down, Lord, from the roof;
bless us with your glance.

I swear, since seeing Your face,
the whole world is a fraud and fantasy.
The garden is bewildered as to what is leaf
or blossom. The distracted birds
can't distinguish the birdseed from the snare.

A house of love with no limits,
a presence more beautiful than venus or the moon,
a beauty whose image fills the mirror of the heart.

Zulaikha's female friends,
beside themselves in Joseph's presence, sliced their wrists.
Maybe a curl of his hair brushed their hearts.

Come in.
The Beloved is here.
We are all drunk.
No one notices who enters or leaves.
Don't sit outside the door in the dark, wondering.

Those drunk with Beloved,
even if they are a thousand,
live as One.
But drunk with lust,
even one is double.

Enter the thicket of lions
unafraid of any wounds.
The shadows you fear
are just a child's fantasy.

There is no wound
and nothing to be wounded;
all is mercy and love.

But you build up thought
like a massive wooden door.
Set fire to the wood.
Silence the noise of the heart.
Hold your harmful tongue.

~ Rumi
-- Version by Kabir Helminski
"Love is a Stranger"
Threshold Books, 1993

Monday, 22 August 2011

Where can I escape from You? Rumi

O One who broke my repentance,
Where shall I run away from You?
O One who settled down, sat on my heart,
Where can I escape from You?

O light of both my eyes,
How could I see without You?
O One who tied my neck,
Where can I escape from You?

O Beautiful One, the lights of your eyes
Turned six dimensions into a six-faced mirror.
O One whose face is blessed,
Where can I escape from You?

Heart is a creature
Which jumped out of You.
Nourished and was nurtured from you.
Soul, on the other hand, is exhausted from You.
Where can I escape from You?

Even if I close my eyes,
You are still in my heart.
You don't go away from there.
Where can I escape from You?

~ Rumi

Without others, I can cope; Without you, I Rumi

You have branded my heart,
It will not err elsewhere.
Without others, I can cope;
Without you, I cannot.

You are my wine, my joy,
My garden, my springtime,
My slumber, my repose,
Without you, I can't cope

You try to be faithful
And sometimes you're cruel.
You are mine. Then, you leave.
Without you, I can't cope.

And when you take the lead,
I become your footstep.
Your absence leaves a void.
Without you, I can't cope.

You have disturbed my sleep,
You have wrecked my image.
You have set me apart.
Without you, I can't cope.

~ Rumi
Art by dorina costras

Saturday, 20 August 2011

Don't weep. The joy that has gone will come 'round again in another Rumi

Don't weep.
The joy that has gone
will come 'round again in another form -
Have no doubt about this!

A child's first joy comes from its mother's milk;
After the child is weaned
his joy comes from drinking sweet wine.

This supreme joy has no resting place -
It enters one form then another,
from box to box -
an eternal movement between heaven and earth.

Here it comes, pouring down from the sky,
seeping into the earth,
and rising up again as a bed of roses.

Now it is water, now a plate of rice,
Now the swaying trees, now a horse and rider.
It lies within these forms for awhile
then bursts forth to become something new.

Isn't this like our dreams? -
The body sleeps
while the soul moves onto take other forms.

You say,
I dreamt I was a cypress, a bed of tulips,
the blossoms of roses and jasmines.
Then the soul returns, and you wake up -
the cypress is gone, the roses are gone.

I tell you truly,
everything you now see will vanish like a dream.
I do not mean to trouble you,
O friend, with words so bold as these.
Perhaps you will only listen to Beloved.
He speaks more gently than I.

But how will you ever hear Him with
All that blathering going on? -
Everyone is speaking about golden bread
yet no one has ever tasted it!

O my soul,
where can I find rest
but in the shimmering love of his heart?
Where can I see the pure light of the Sun
but in the eyes of my own Beloved ?

~ Rumi
Version by Jonathan Star
"A Garden Beyond Paradise: The Mystical Poetry of Rumi"
Art by Jereme Crow

Friday, 19 August 2011

When the friend opens the door and says, You are here, please come Rumi

When the friend opens the door and says,
You are here, please come in.

It is such a pleasure to give up talking
and listen to his long story
about Khidr, the guide of souls.

A tailor cuts cloth uniquely for each person.
Springs open in the centre of the lake.
Trees move in the breeze that comes before dawn.

A nightingale sits in the rosebush and asks,
Who do you love? tell me.
No one else is here.

The rose, so long as you are you,
I cannot, This is the passionate demand,
the one the burning bush made of Moses.

I am a sacred pool. Take off your shoes.
Wade in. You are the essence
of place and placelessness, honoured one.
Take my hand.

The needle's eye will not accept
a strand of thread that is folded double.

So it is with you.
You find yourself holding the royal bowl
and welcoming all to the banquet.

The sun stands in fire up to it's chin
so we may have daylight.

When you take the hand of someone you love,
what happens to your hands?

Your darling comes, and you ask,
How can I help? Come here.

Reason wonders, Should I go?
And your loving, Should I run?

The one you love signals,
Yes. I want both of you.

The table is there. Sit down.
Choose the bright company.
Do not worry about food.

Now I pass to you this silence,
so that the alternations of night and day
with their flaming language
may finish the story.

~ Rumi,
from Bridge to the Soul,
translated by Coleman Barks.
Art by dorina costras

"My dear, How can I be more loving to you...BY Hafiz

It happens
all the time in heaven,

And some day
It will begin to happen
Again on earth -

That men and women
who are married,

And men and men
who are

And women and women
Who give each other

Often will get down
on their knees

And while so tenderly
Holding their lover's hand,

With tears in their eyes,
Will sincerely speak, saying,

"My dear,
How can I be
more loving to you;

How can I be more

~ Hafiz

Thursday, 18 August 2011

I am both silent and fermenting for you like the sea of Aden! ~ Rumi

Now sleeping,
now awake,
my heart is
in constant fervor.

It is a covered saucepan,
placed on fire.

O you!
who have offered us
form a cup a silencing wine;

Each moment
a new tale is shouting
to be told in silence.

In his wrath there are a hundred kindnesses,
in his meanness a hundred generosities;

In his ignorance immeasurable gnosis,
silently speaking like the mind.

The words of those whom you have silenced,
cannot hear but those whom you have made uncounscious;

I am both silent and fermenting
for you
like the sea of Aden!

~ Rumi
Divan 1808:6-9
Translated by Fatemeh Keshavarz,
'Reading Mystical Lyric: The Case of Jalal al-Din Rumi',
University of South Carolina Press, 1998.
Art Rassouli

Monday, 15 August 2011

I will make you brooches and toys for your delight
Of bird-song at morning and star-sine at night.
I will make a palace fit for you and me
Of green days in forests and blue days at sea.
~ Robert Louis Stevenson.

I looked for my self, but my self was Rumi

I looked for my self,
but my self was gone.

The boundaries of my being
had disappeared in the sea.

Waves broke.
Awareness rose again.

And a voice returned
me to myself.

It always
happens like this.

Sea turns on itself and foams,
and with every foaming bit

another body,
another being takes form.

And when the sea sends word,
each foaming body

melts back
to ocean-breath.

~ Rumi
Trans. Coleman Barks

The Rose of Glory can grow only from the heart. ~ Rumi

There is no salvation for the soul
but to fall in Love.

Only lovers can escape
out of these two worlds.

This was ordained in creation.
Only from the heart
can you reach the sky:

The Rose of Glory
can grow only from the heart.

~ Rumi

I have learned that every heart will get what it prays for Hafiz

I pull a sun from my coin purse each day.
And at night I let my pet the moon
run freely into the sky meadow.

If I whistled,
she would turn her head and look at me.
If I then waved my arms,
she would come back wagging a marvelous tail
of stars.

There are always a few men like me
in this world
who are house-sitting for Beloved.

We share His royal duties:
I water each day a favorite potted plant
of His--
this earth.

Ask the Friend for love.
Ask Him again.

For I have learned that every heart will get
what it prays for

~ Hafiz
(A potted plant)
taken from Hafiz's
"The Subject Tonight Is Love"
translated by Daniel Ladinsky

No one can keep us from carrying Beloved Wherever we Hafiz

No one can keep us from carrying Beloved
Wherever we go.

No one can rob His Name
From our heart as we try to relinquish our fears
And at last stand -- Victorious.

We do not have to leave him in the mosque
Or church alone at night;
We do not have to be jealous of tales of saints
Or glorious masts, those intoxicated souls
Who can make outrageous love with the Friend.

We do not have to be envious of our spirits’ ability
Which can sometimes touch God in a dream.

Our yearning eyes, our warm-needing bodies,
Can all be drenched in contentment
And Light.

No one anywhere can keep us
From carrying the Beloved wherever we go.

No one can rob His precious Name
From the rhythm of my heart --
Steps and breath.

~ Hafiz
from The Subject Tonight is Love,
translated by Daniel Ladinsky

Saturday, 13 August 2011

Don't say, 'Go away, don't stand at my door!' Rumi

If I was not so pitifully in love
I wouldn't then be standing at your door.

Don't say,
'Go away, don't stand at my door!'

I wouldn't exist, my dear,
if I didn't stand here.

~ Rumi
Translation by Zara Houshmand

Friday, 12 August 2011

My cheeks are here and you are looking at roses! ~ Rumi

I went strolling with my beloved
in a rose garden.

And from lack of awareness,
I cast a glance upon a rose.

That beloved said to me,
"May you be ashamed, For

My cheeks are here
and you are looking at roses!

~ Rumi

Thursday, 11 August 2011

You are the comfort of my Rumi

You are the comfort of my soul
in the season of sorrow.
You are the wealth of my spirit
in the heartbreak of loss.

The unimaginable,
The unknowable -
that is what you give my soul
when it moves in your direction.

By your grace
my eyes have looked upon eternity.
O Beloved, how could this crumbling empire
ever take me from you?

The voice that sings your name
is sweeter than midnight sleep
more graceful than the song of a royal poet.

When deep in prayer
my faith is bound by the thought of you,
not the seven verses of faith.

You greet sinners with mercy,
You melt stone hearts with love.

If I were offered a kingdom,
And the world's riches were placed at my feet,
I would bow with my face low and say,
"This does not compare to His love!"

Union is the pure wine.
My life is the cup.
Without your wine
what use is this cup?
I once had a thousand desires,
But in my one desire to know you
all else melted away.

The pure essence of your being
has taken over my heart and soul.
Now there is no second or third,
only the sound of your sweet cry.

Through your grace I have found
a treasure within myself.
I have found the truth of the Unseen world.

I have come upon the eternal ecstasy.
I have gone beyond the ravages of time.
I have become one with you!

Now my heart sings,
"I am the soul of the world."

From my first breath I have longed for Him -
This longing has become my life.
This longing has seen me grow old. . . .

But one mention of Beloved
and all my youth comes back to me.

~ Rumi
-- Version by Jonathan Star

Something flows from your eyes that is beyond a thousand false desires ~ Rumi

Why are you lying in the middle of the road?
From the love-wine you poured.

I may be excessive with my giveaway impulses,
but I still have what you gave
when you held my head against your chest.

You pour what you pour
without a flask, without a cup.

That mastery and generosity
washes away all restraint.

Reason burst just for the joy of it
when you gave me the bowl.

Something flows from your eyes
that is beyond a thousand false desires

~ Rumi

Be speechless and listen. ~ Rumi

Money and real estate occupy the body,
but all the heart wants is expanding friendship.

A rose garden without a friend is indeed a prison;
a prison with a friend becomes a rose garden.

If the pleasure of friendship did not exist,
neither men nor women would be here.

A thorn from a friends’s garden is worth more
than a thousand cypresses and lilies.

Love sewed us securely together.
We owe nothing to the needle and thread.

If the house of the world is dark,
Love will find a way to create windows.

If the world is full of arrows and swords,
the Armorer of Love has made us coats of mail.

Love itself describes it’s own perfection.
Be speechless and listen.

~ Rumi
(Divani Shamsi Tabrizi 1926)
From: Rumi ” Love’s Ripening”
Translated by K. Helminski & A Rezwami

Sunday, 7 August 2011

Stay with me Rumi

Stay with me here,
for the new things I discovered.

Never been so amazed before,
I am witnessing magic !
So, stay with me.

I threw my heart to the winds
and followed you.

One day the wind brought me your scent,
my heart swelled in gratitude
and scattered in the wind.

~ Rumi

Saturday, 6 August 2011

my heart is coloured with the colour of Kabir

I have stilled my restless mind,
and my heart is radiant:

for in Thatness
I have seen beyond That-ness.

In company
I have seen the Beloved Himself.

Living in bondage,
I have set myself free:

I have broken away
from the clutch of all narrowness.

Kabir says:
"I have attained the unattainable,
and my heart is coloured with the colour of love."

~ Kabir
The Songs of Kabir,
tr. by Rabindranath Tagore
Art by Anthea Slade

Hey, let’s get Pedro Salinas

Hey, let’s get away
from being so much you and so much me.
Leave your body asleep,
leave my body at your side,
leave them.

Leave your name and mine,
leave what pained us
and let us take a break
from ourselves, with ourselves;
Let us pretend that we were
one, but two others.

Already without the body or the name
let us try on forms,
beings, to see if we can live
better in something else.

Let us try on trees;
two trees that, even with
very separate trunks,
will look for each other on top,
find each other with their leaves,
brush each other with their flowers,

Let us try on waves
that run one over the other,
separate and playing,
until, in the warm sand
they stop being double.

And if you have any material left
let us go further. We can
be two silences, so together
that no one senses that this
surrounding silence
is double, because two voices
becoming quiet, they forged it
to hear each other better.

And if you want more, let us
be light,
you a ray, me another ray,
you one half, and me the other
of this light, that in order that it be
us, it needs us
and it contains us.

And still we can
flee further:
pretend that we no longer exist,
in a prenatal world
where being together is
to be immensely lost
one in another, indivisible,
like the sea and the sky, before
the Lord separated them.

And later you will see how happy
is the return to ourselves,
to find myself with you,
with me, with the pain,
with your voice and with my name.

You’ll see, you’ll see, what a miracle
it is to see each other, to touch each other,
you’ll see what a revelation
it is to see ourselves, to see ourselves again
in these homely faces
where the soul lived within us.
To pretend that we stopped
loving each other. How true
this love will always be to us!
What a partner
will be born, so happy,
so secure, of this goodbye!

~ Pedro Salinas
English Translation by Amber Wantman

Art by  Anthea Slade

O FRIEND, awake, and sleep no Kabir

awake, and sleep no more!

The night is over and gone,
would you lose your day also?
Others, who have wakened,
have received jewels;

O foolish one !
you have lost all whilst you slept.
Your lover is wise,
and you are foolish,

O Dear!
You never prepared
the bed of your Beloved:

O mad one!
you passed your time in silly play.
Your youth was passed in vain,
for you did not know your Beloved;

Wake, wake! See!
your bed is empty:
He left you in the night.

Kabîr says:
"Only she wakes,
whose heart is pierced
with the arrow of His music."

~ Kabir
Art by Wieslaw Borkowski

All your talk is worthless When compared to one whisper of the Beloved. ~ Rumi

Lovers share a sacred decree
to seek the Beloved.
They roll head over heels,
rushing toward the Beautiful One
like a torrent of water.

In truth, everyone is a shadow of the Beloved
Our seeking is His seeking,
Our words are His words.

At times we flow toward the Beloved
like a dancing stream.
At times we are still water
held in His pitcher.
At times we boil in a pot
turning to vapor
that is the job of the Beloved.

He breathes into my ear
until my soul
takes on His fragrance.
He is the soul of my soul
How can I escape?
But why would any soul in this world
want to escape from the Beloved?

He will melt your pride
making you thin as a strand of hair,
Yet do not trade, even for both worlds,
One strand of His hair.

We search for Him here and there
while looking right at Him.
Sitting by His side we ask,
"O Beloved, where is the Beloved?"

Enough with such questions!
Let silence take you to the core of life.

All your talk is worthless
When compared to one whisper
of the Beloved.

~ Rumi
Ode 442 trans. by Jonathan Star and Shahram Shiva
A Garden Beyond Paradise: The Mystical Poetry of Rumi
Art by Al Neaimi

He is dying for sight of Kabir

MY body and my mind
are grieved for the want of Thee;

O my Beloved !
come to my house.

When people say I am Thy bride,
I am ashamed;
for I have not touched
Thy heart with my heart.

Then what is this love of mine ?
I have no taste for food,
I have no sleep;
my heart is ever restless
within doors and without.

As water is to the thirsty,
so is the lover to the bride.

Who is there
that will carry my news to my Beloved ?

Kabîr is restless:
He is dying for sight of Beloved.

~ Kabir
The Songs of Kabir,
tr. by Rabindranath Tagore

Wednesday, 3 August 2011

I'll keep silence how can i express your life when mine still is untold..! ~ Rumi

Whatever happens
to the world around
show me your purpose
show me your source

Even if the world
is Godless and chaos
show me your anchor
show me your love

If there is hunger
if there is famine
show me your harvest
show me your resource

If life is bitter
everywhere snakes everywhere poison
show me your garden
show me your meadow

If the sun and the moon fall
if darkness rules the world
show me your light
show me your flame

If i have no mouth
or tongue to utter
words of your secrets
show me your fountain

I'll keep silence
how can i express
your life when mine
still is untold..!

~ Rumi
-- Translation by Nader Khalili
"Rumi, Fountain of Fire"
Burning Gate Press, Los Angeles, 1994

Tuesday, 2 August 2011

Sweep the Dust off the Rumi

The Beautiful One handed me a broom and said,
"Sweep the dust from the sea!",

then burned the broom in the fireplace and said,
"Give me back my broom."

Bewildered, I put my head to the ground.
"In real submission there's no longer
even someone to bow."

"But how?"
"Without hesitation or anything of yourself."

I bared my neck and said,
"Sever me from myself with Ali's sword."

But as I was struck, and struck again,
countless heads appeared.

As if I were a lamp, and each head a wick,
flames rose on every side,

countless candle-eyed heads,
a procession spanning East and West.
But what is East or West within placelessness?

It's all a furnace and a bath house.
Your heart is cool; how long will you lie in this
warm bath house?

Leave the bath house and its stove.
Undress yourself in the inner world
and appreciate the frescoes, the beautiful figures,
colored with the hues of the tulip bed;
look towards the window that lets in the light.

The six directions are the bath house,
and a window opens toward the placeless.
Above it is the beauty of a Sovereign

from whose reflection the earth and the sky
received their color, from Whom soulfulness
has rained down upon the Turk and Zanzibari.

The day is gone, and my story ends.
Night and day are shamed by my beauty's story.

Beloved keeps me
drunk and languishing in this state.

~ Rumi
-- Version by Kabir Edmund Helminski
"Love is a Stranger"
Threshold Books, 1993
Art by dianadades

The eye of the needle of absence is very Rumi

The nightingale says to the rose bud,
“Tell me, who is in your heart?

No one is around, we are alone.”
“We are not alone here,” the rose answers,

“As long as you are with yourself.
Don’t expect anything from me,

Get rid of yourself first.”
Know this well:

The eye of the needle of absence is very small,
It doesn’t allow folded thread to go through.

~ Rumi

Monday, 1 August 2011

Listen to this reed Rumi

Listen to this reed forlorn,
Breathing, even since it was torn

From its rushy bed, a strain
Of impassioned love and pain.

"The secret of my song, though near,
None can see, none can hear.

Oh, for a friend to know the sign
And mingle all his soul with mine.

It's the flame of Love that fired me,
It's the wine of Love inspired me.

Would you learn how lovers bleed,
Then listen, listen to the reed !

~ Rumi