Book information: New York : HarperOne, 2010. 492 pages. 25cm.
“You have been walking the ocean’s edge,
holding up your robes to keep them dry.
You must dive naked under and deeper under,
a thousand times deeper. Love flows down.”
My heart skipped a beat…
I did not expect Rumi’s poems to reach into my chest, grab hold of my heart, and nor do they let go during the entire evening, but linger over in my sweet dreams and envelop me with tidal waves of wondrous charm. No matter we are meandering along the hiking path, or being at the top of the glitzy metropolis with his big red book, one thing is for sure. His tender words mirrored the glorification of surrounding natural awe, and melodic writing lines reflected serene beauty of descriptions and infinite passion towards the relationship bonds that stirred in my soul, creating an exquisite mosaic of in-depth expression bit by bit. Flipping over this medieval literature is just like discovering a priceless treasure in the gigantic universe of creations. I continue to be mesmerised by his masterfully lyrical verses in volumes, and magnetically thirst for his verses to satiate our appetite for soul-searching.
“Something opens our wings.Something makes boredom and hurt disappear.Someone fills the cup in front of us.We taste only sacredness.”
How does a part of the world leave the world?
How can wetness leave water?
Do not try to put out a fire
by throwing on more fire.
Do not wash a wound with blood.
No matter how fast you run,
your shadow more than keeps up.
Sometimes it’s in front.
Only full, overhead sun
diminishes your shadow.
But that shadow has been serving you.
What hurts you blesses you.
Darkness is your candle.
Your boundaries are your quest.”
After his escape from Mongol invasion and settlement in Konya in the 13th century, Rumi’s encounter with Shams of Tabriz, who was his spiritual mentor offering rare insight of wild mystic, also became the main backdrop of this literary inspiration. After Sham’s disappearance, thousands of lyrical poems in the red book are in much honour to their precious bond of friendship, and also others that are faithfully dedicated to the prophet Muhammad and God. Enlightened by the Islamic ideology of Sufism, Rumi eventually shed light on divine epiphany and spiritual awakening, and such mystical richness in the poems further extended his wholehearted respect and devotion towards Muhammad and several religious images.
“Spring is Christ, raising martyred plants from their shrouds.Their mouths open in gratitude, wanting to be kissed.
The wind is the Holy Spirit.The trees are Mary.Watch how husband and wife play subtle games with their hands.Cloudy pearls from Aden are thrown across the lovers,as is the marriage customs.
The scent of Joseph’s shirt comes to Jacob.A red carnelian of Yemeni laughter is heardby Muhammad in Mecca.
We talked about this and that.There is no rest except on these branching moments.”
“Lovers, it is time for the taste of fire.Let sadness and your fears of death sit in the corner and sulk.The sky itself reels with love.There is one being inside all of us, one peace.
Poet, let every words tremble in its wind bell.Saddle the horse with great anticipation.Flute notes are calling us into friendship.Begin again.Play the melody all the way through this time.”