Friday, June 26, 2009

Rumi on Love

All selections from: Shambhala Pocket Classics
"The Pocket Rumi"
Edited by Kabir Helminski; copyright 2001


A New Rule

It is the rule with drunkards to fall upon each other,
to quarrel, become violent, and make a scene.
The lover is even worse than a drunkard.
I will tell you what love is: to enter a mine of gold.
And what is that gold?

The lover is a king above all kings,
unafraid of death,
not at all interested in a golden crown.
The dervish has a pearl concealed
under his patched cloak.
Why should he go begging door to door?

Last night that moon came along,
drunk dropping clothes in the street.
“Get up,” I told my heart,
“Give the soul a glass of wine.
The moment has come
to join the nightingale in the garden,
to taste sugar with the soul-parrot.”

I have fallen with my heart shattered—
where else but on your path, and I
broke your bowl, drunk, my idol, so drunk
don’t let me be harmed, take my hand.

A new rule, a new law has been born:
break all the glasses and draw near to the glassblower.

The War Inside

Rest your cheek, for a moment,
on this drunken cheek.
Let me forget the war and cruelty inside myself.
I hold these silver coins in my hand;
give me your wine of golden light.
You have opened the seven doors of heaven;
now lay your hand generously on my tightened heart.
All I have to offer is this illusion, my self.
Give it a nickname at least that is real.
Only you can restore what you have broken;
help my broken head.
I’m not asking for some sweet pistachio candy,
but your everlasting love.
Fifty times I’ve said,
“Heart, stop hunting and step into this net.”

Search the Darkness

Sit with your friends; don’t go back to sleep.
Don’t sink like a fish to the bottom of the sea.

Surge like an ocean,
don’t scatter yourself like a storm.

Life’s waters flow from darkness.
Search the darkness, don’t run from it.

Night travelers are full of light, and you are, too;
don’t leave this companionship.

Be a wakeful candle in a golden dish,
don’t slip into the dirt like quicksilver.

The moon appears for night travelers,
be watchful when the moon is full.

Be Love’s Willing Slave

Come and be Love’s willing slave,
for Love’s slavery will save you.
Forsake the slavery of this world
and take up Love’s sweet service.
The free, the world enslaves,
but to slaves Love grants freedom.
I crave release from this world
like a bird from it’s egg;
free me from this shell that clings.
As from the grave, grant me new life.
O Love, O quail in the free fields of spring,
wildly sing songs of joy.

Tuesday, June 16, 2009

Coming Home

Spring of ’09 has felt like a season of “Coming Home”.

After a winter of preparing for my third move in as many years, March and April were consumed with moving, and bringing final closure to my and my childrens' lives in a house that had become too big for us, and in the end, more of a burden than a home. Along with the excitement of the move, April also is the month when kid number last (four) made her college choice. Also in this transitory month, New York State finally figured out that they needed to issue me a license in Marriage and Family Therapy, and did!

In May, my older two kids came home to their new home away from home for Memorial Day weekend. While home, my daughter attended one of her high school classmates in her wedding, making for a weekend of lots of reminiscing and noticing the passage of time. Then, the last weekend of May I participated in a small “retreat” of sorts with some of my MFT “family” from Syracuse University. After all the craziness of preparations for and then moving during the winter and early spring, the events of May felt warm, comfortable, and were a welcome shift from the tedium of trying to get myself re-organized in my new space. It really did feel like it was my time for “coming home”. Home to my new space where the kids and I could be home together. Home with my professional family, who I don’t get to see that often. Home with myself as I move forward.

And now it is June. Youngest had her senior ball, and is preparing for her high school graduation, and then college. I had a birthday, complete with lots of old fashioned phone calls from family and closest friends contacting me with their well wishes. And, I have gifted myself on this birthday by re-furnishing, and re-creating my bedroom space. It seemed to be the appropriate offering at this important juncture. Many pieces of my life that have been a source of struggle and heaviness now seem to be falling into place.

It would be easy to decide that all those heavy struggles that have worked their way to happy resolution, and with such synchronicity, should now create for me the life that I have been waiting for. However, I know all too well that there are many more sources of struggle and heaviness yet to find me. Despite turning the page in my calendar, I am quite certain that I have many more years of sorting out the “stuff” of my life, and weaving my way through confusing paths, before I can rest easy in the bliss of pure enlightened wisdom! And, that is a good thing. I may not have quite attained bliss, yet there is a juiciness that life offers as I have found myself swimming through the mud, and then finding a place to emerge. Hopefully the next pond will have thinner mud, and will not be quite so wide!