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the Message Continues ... 9/125


Newsletter for January 2012


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Rumi's Tribute to Shams-i Tabriz


Wooden Walking Stick
by Rumi

Friend, you are Moses. I the wooden
walking stock. Sometimes that simple use.

Other times, a dragon earth-energy. You
decide. There's no time or place in the air

you inhabit. The days you give me I give
back to you. I have seen your unseeable

beauty and taken report without words to
my heart, which became all eye with the news.

"Long life to eyes," says my heart now over
and over. Hundreds of candles search the

turning sky. No bread in the basket, no
money; home, family, work, in shambles, with

your light shining on the ruin. Crushed
in grief's mortar, let me be medicine for
other eyes. What is the soul? Half a leaf.
What is the heart? A flower opening. I am

not the one speaking here. Even so, I'll
stop. Anything anyone says is your voice.

Ghazal (Ode )2236
Version by Coleman Barks, with Nevit Ergin
"The Glance"
Viking-Penguin, 1999


Confused and distraught
by Rumi
courtesy Sunlight

Again I am raging, I am in such a state by your soul that every
bond you bind, I break, by your soul.

I am like heaven, like the moon, like a candle by your glow; I
am all reason, all love, all soul, by your soul.

My joy is of your doing, my hangover of your thorn; whatever
side you turn your face, I turn mine, by your soul.

I spoke in error; it is not surprising to speak in error in this
state, for this moment I cannot tell cup from wine, by your soul.

I am that madman in bonds who binds the "divs"; I, the
madman, am a Solomon with the "divs", by your soul.

Whatever form other than love raises up its head from my
heart, forthwith I drive it out of the court of my heart, by your soul.

Come, you who have departed, for the thing that departs
comes back; neither you are that, by my soul, nor I am that, by your soul.

Disbeliever, do not conceal disbelief in your soul, for I will
recite the secret of your destiny, by your soul.

Out of love of Sham-e Tabrizi, through wakefulness or
nightrising, like a spinning mote I am distraught, by your soul.

Translation by A.J. Arberry
Mystical Poems of Rumi 2
University of Chicago Press, 1991

* A word-play between madman (dvna) and the jinn (dv-n).
The Arabic word "jinn" was translated into Persian as "dv," meaning
"demon" (and contrasts in meaning with its Sanscrit cognate, "deva," from
which the European word "divinity" originates). The Arabic words "crazy"
(junn, majnn) literally mean "jinn-possessed," were translated into
Persian as "dvna," literally means "demonic." According to Qur'n,
Solomon was given power over the supernatural beings called jinn (from which
comes the word "genie"), who did great projects of labor for him (Qur'n 34:12,
21:82, 38:36-37). footnote provided by Ibrahim Gamard


Always search for the inward nature
by Rumi

Always search for the inward nature
and choose as your companion someone of good character:
Observe how rose oil has drunk the essence of the rose.
The earth of the grave is ennobled by the pure body.
Then say, "First choose the neighbor, then the house."
If you have a heart, go, seek a sweetheart.
The dust of the body is endowed with the character of the soul:
it becomes a salve for the eyes of those who are dear to God.
Many a one who sleeps like dust in the grave
is more useful and open-handed than a hundred who are still alive.
The shadow of his body has been taken away,
but his dust overshadows hundreds of thousands with his protection.


Dar pay-e khu bsh va b khvosh khu neshin
khu paniri rawghan-e gol-r be-bin
Khk az hamsyegi-ye jesm-e pk
chon mosharraf mad o eqbl nk
Pas to ham "al-Jr thumma al-dr" gu
gar deli dri be-raw deldr ju
Khk-e u ham sirat-e jn mi shavad
sormeh-ye cheshm-e `azizn mi shavad
Ay bas dar gur khofteh khk-vr
beh ze sad ahy be-naf` o enteshr
Syeh bardeh u va khkesh syeh mand
sad hazrn zendeh dar syeh-'i vayand

Mathnawi VI: 3007-3013
Version by Camille and Kabir Helminski
"Rumi: Jewels of Remembrance"
Threshold Books, 1996
(Persian transliteration courtesy of Yahy Monastra)





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