Didn’t I say, “Don’t go there; I am your friend.
In this mirage of existence, I am the fountain of life.”
Even if your anger takes you
a hundred thousand years away,
in the end you will return, for I am your goal.
Didn’t I say, “Don’t be content with earthly forms;
I am the designer of the intimate chamber of your contentment.”
Didn’t I say, “I am the sea, and you are a single fish;
don’t strand yourself on dry land; I am your clear sea.”
Didn’t I say, “Don’t get caught
in the trap like a helpless bird;
I am the power of flight – your feet and your wings.”
Didn’t I say, “They will waylay you and make you cold;
I am the fire and your warm desire.”
Didn’t I say, “They will implant their qualities in you
until you forget that the best qualities are here.”
Didn’t I say, “You do not know from what direction
your affairs are put in order.”
I am the Creator beyond directions.
If light is in your heart, find your way home.
If you are of God, know your Benefactor.
Look at humanity, how lacking in light people are,
how they perish out of desire for perishable things.
Because of pride they keep separate from God,
dead to the spirit, living a lie.
Is the sweetness of the cane sweeter
than the one who made the canefield?
Behind the beauty of the moon is the moonmaker.
There is intelligence inside the ocean’s intelligence
feeding our love like an invisible waterwheel.
There is a skill to making cooking oil from animal fat.
Consider now the knack that makes eyesight
from the shining jelly of your eyes.
Dawn comes up like a beautiful meal being served.
We are hungry and distracted, so in love with the cook.
Don’t just be proud of your mustache
as you drive three donkeys down the road.
Instead of gemstones, love the jeweler.
Enough of these exhaling sounds.
Let the darling finish this
who turns listening into seeing.
– Rumi (translated by Coleman Barks)
Photo: Runaround Pond, Maine – June 2019
Sometimes I forget completely
what companionship is.
Unconscious and insane, I spill sad
energy everywhere. My story
gets told in various ways: a romance,
a dirty joke, a war, a vacancy.
Divide up my forgetfulness to any number,
it will go around.
These dark suggestions that I follow,
are they a part of some plan?
Friends, be careful. Don’t come near me
out of curiosity, or sympathy.
You are a sign, and a seeker after a sign; there is no better sign than the seeker after a sign. – Rumi
Your life is like a purse of gold:
day and night are like money changers.
Continually Time counts out that gold,
until your purse is emptied and death is here.
If you dig away at a mountain
and don’t replace anything of what you’ve taken
a desolate land is left behind.
So for every breath you breathe out,
put another in its place.
Fall in worship and draw near
so you may reach your aim.