The thickets blocking your path Renderings

Whirling-B&W.2

Rumi

(Rendered from Coleman Barks and Nader Khalili translations)

Of Being Woven

The thickets blocking your path are the
imaginings that keep you from coming
this Way. All those fears that you will
be broken 
into bits like a glass bottle.

This road demands courage and
stamina, yet it is full of 
footprints!

Who are all these companions?

They are the rungs of your ladder!

Use them! 
With company you
quicken your ascent.
 You may be
happy enough going alone, but with
others 
you will get farther, and faster.

Every prophet sought out companions.

A wall standing alone is useless, but put
three or four walls 
together, and they will
support a roof to keep grain dry 
and safe.

When ink joins with a pen, then the blank paper
can say something.
 Rushes and reeds must be
woven to be useful as a mat. If 
they were not
interlaced the wind would blow them away.

Like that, God joined up creatures,
and gave them 
friendship.


Where Everything Is Music

Don’t worry about saving these songs!
And if one of our instruments breaks, it
doesn’t matter. We have now fallen into
the place where everything is music.

The strumming and the flute notes rise
into the atmosphere, and even if the
whole world’s harp should burn up, there
will still be hidden instruments playing.

So the candle flickers and goes out, we have
a piece of flint, a spark. These singing words
are sea foam, and our graceful movements
come from a pearl somewhere on the ocean floor.

Poetry reaches out like spindrift to caress
the edges of beached driftwood, wanting!
This song we follow derives from a slow
and powerful root that we cannot see.

Stop all words now. Open the window of
your heart, and let spirit fly in and out.


Resurrection Will Be Now

 Make peace with the universe.
Take joy in it. It will turn to gold.
Resurrection will be now. Every
moment, a new beauty.


Take Down A Musical Instrument

Today, like every other day, we wake
up empty, and scared. Don’t open the
door to the study and begin reading.

Take down a musical instrument and
start to play. Let the beauty you love
be what you do. There are a hundred
ways to kneel and kiss the ground.


Be Silently Drawn

Respond to every call that delights
your Spirit. Be silently drawn by the
stronger pull of what you really love.

When you do things from your
soul, a river moves though you,
freshness and deep joy the signs.

Don’t ask what love can make or do.
Look at the colors of the world!


The Clear Bead At The Center

The clear bead at the center
changes everything. There are
no edges to my loving now.
You’ve heard it said there’s
a window that opens from one
mind to another, but if there’s
no wall, there’s no need for
fitting the window, or a latch.


A Dervish

The Sufi opens his hands to the universe
and gives away each instant, free.
Unlike someone who begs on the
street for money to survive, a
dervish begs to give you his life.


You’ve Made It

You’ve made it out of the city,
that image of your body trembling
with traffic, and fear slips behind.
Your face arrives in the redbud trees
and the tulips. You’re still restless.

Climb up the ladder to the gathering.
You’re by yourself a lot. Become
so that when you walk in, grace
moves to the one who needs it.
If you’ve not been fed, be bread.

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