The Poetry


Poem 35
Poem 36
Poem 37
Poem 38
Poem 39
Poem 40
Poem 41
Poem 42
Poem 43
Poem 44
Poem 45
Poem 46
Poem 47
Poem 48
Poem 49
Poem 50
Poem 51



Rumi Poetry Translation Copyright © Coleman Barks

The Poetry: These particular translations are by Coleman Barks. This is copyrighted material. I have been given the legal right to use these translations in my work. The poems shown are but a few that are available. Email or send us your favorite poem or quote. Please include the name of the book and the page number.

Please Note:
Bear in mind that there are size limitations. A long poem may need a very large rock. A larger rock will increase price.The font style and size we have chosen works well with the process of cutting into the stone. Fonts that are too small or ornate will not work with this process.


Poem 1

The breeze at dawn

Has secrets to tell you

Don't go back to sleep

You must ask

For what you really want

Don't go back to sleep

People are going back and forth

Across the doorsill

Where the two worlds touch

The door is round and open

Don't go back to sleep

Rumi


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Poem 2

Let yourself be silently drawn

By the stronger pull of what

You truly love

Rumi


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Poem 3

Keep walking

Though there's no place to get to.

Don't try to see through the distances.

That's not for human beings.

Move within

but don't move

The way that fear makes you move.

Rumi


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Poem 4

Come to the orchard in spring

There is light and wine

And Sweethearts

In the pomegranite flowers

If you do not come

These do not matter

It you do come

These do not matter

Rumi


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Poem 5

When I am with you, we stay up all night.

When you're not here, I can't go to sleep.

Praise God for these two insomnias!

and the difference between them.

Rumi


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Poem 6

I have lived on the lip of insanity

Wanting to know reasons

Knocking on a door, it opens

I have been knocking from the inside!

Rumi


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Poem 7

The minute I'm disappointed

I feel encouraged.

when I'm ruined

I'm healed.

When I'm quiet

and solid as the ground

Then I talk

the low tones of thunder

for everyone

Rumi


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Poem 8

Let The Beauty You Love
Be What You Do

Rumi


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Poem 9

Today I'm out wandering, turning my skull
into a cup for others to drink wine from.
In this town somewhere there sits a calm, intelligent person,
who doesn't know what he's about to do!
Rumi


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Poem 10

Today, like every other day, we wake up empty and frightened.
Don't open the door to the study and begin reading.
Take down a musical instrument.
Let the beauty we love be what we do.
There are hundreds of ways to kneel and kiss the ground.
Rumi



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Poem 11

Your grief for what you've lost lifts a mirror
up to where you're bravely working.
Expecting the worst, you look, and instead,
here's the joyful face you've been longing to see.
Your hand opens and closes, and opens and closes.
If it were always a fist or always stretched open
you would be paralyzed.
Your deepest presence
is in every small contraction and expansion,
the two as beautifully balanced and coordinated
as bird wings.
Rumi


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Poem 12

Think that you are gliding out from the face of a cliff like an eagle.
Think that you are walking like a tiger walks by himself in the forest.
You're most handsome when you're searching for food.
Spend less time with nightingales and peacocks.
One is just a voice, the other just a color.
Rumi


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Poem 13

There is a channel between voice and presence,
A way where information flows.
In disciplined silence the channel opens.
With wandering talk, it closes.
Rumi


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Poem 14

The light you give off did not come from a pelvis.
You're features did not begin in semen.
Don't try to hide inside anger,
radiance that cannot be hidden.
Rumi


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Poem 15

There is a passion in me that doesn't long for anything from
another human being.
I was given something else, a cap to wear in both worlds.
It fell off. No matter.
One morning I went to a place beyond dawn, a source of sweetness
that flows and is never less.
I have been shown a beauty that would confuse both worlds,
but I won't cause that uproar.
I am nothing but a head set on the ground as a gift for Shams.
Rumi


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Poem 16

Essence is emptiness.
Everything else, accidental.
Emptiness brings peace to your loving.
Everything else, disease.
In this world of trickery emptiness
is what your soul wants.
Rumi


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Poem 17

Come to this street with
only your sweet fragrance.
Don't walk into this river
wearing a robe!
Paths go from here to there,
but don't arrive from somewhere!
It's time now to live naked.
Rumi


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Poem 18

Be fair.
Admit that love has in it all the righteousness
that we need.
Confess that you're willing to forget
and be numb enough to call some low
desire a holy name.
Live as evidence that there is a way
from wanting to longing.
Rumi


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Poem 19

Soul serves as a cup for the juice
that leaves the intellect in ruins.
That candle came and consumed me,
about whose flame the universe
flutters in total confusion.
Rumi


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Poem 20

The mystic dances in the sun,
hearing music others don't.
'Insanity,' they say, those others.
If so, it's a very gentle,
nourishing sort.
Rumi


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Poem 21

A rose's rarest essence lives in the thorn.
Rumi


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Poem 22

Imagining is like feeling around in a dark lane,
or washing your eyes with blood.
You are the truth from foot to brow.
Now, what else would you like to know?
Rumi


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Poem 23

You and I have spoken all these words
but for the way we have to go,
words are no preparation.
I have one small drop of knowing in my soul.
Let it dissolve in your ocean.
Rumi


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Poem 24

The way of love is not a subtle argument.
The door there is devastation.
Birds make great sky-circles of their freedom.
How do they learn it?
They fall, and falling, they're given wings.
Rumi


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Poem 25

When it's cold and raining,
You are more beautiful.
And the snow brings me even closer to your lips.
The inner secret, that which was never born,
you are that freshness, and I am with you now.
I can't explain the goings, or the comings.
You enter suddenly, and I am
nowhere again. Inside the majesty.
Rumi


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Poem 26

Birdsong brings relief to my longing.
I am just as ecstatic as they are,
but with nothing to say!
Please, universal soul, practice some song,
or something, through me!
Rumi


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Poem 27

The morning wind spreads its fresh smell.
We must get up and take that in,
That wind that lets us live.
Breathe before it's gone.
Rumi


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Poem 28

Who makes these changes?
I shoot an arrow right. It lands left.
I ride after a deer and find myself chased by a hog.
I plot to get what I want and end up in prison.
I dig pits to trap others and fall in.
I should be suspicious of what I want.
Rumi


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Poem 29

A road might end at a single house,
but it's not love's road.
Love is a river. Drink from it.
Rumi


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Poem 30

I want to be where your bare foot walks,
because maybe before you step, you'll look at the ground.
I want that blessing.
Rumi


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Poem 31

I asked for one kiss; you gave me six.
Who was teacher is now student.
Things good and generous take form in me,
and the air is clear.
Rumi


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Poem 32

Out beyond ideas of wrong-doing and right-doing
there is a field. I'll meet you there.
Rumi


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Poem 33

What was in that candle's light
that opened and consumed me so quickly?
Come back, my friend.
The form of our love is not a created form.
Nothing can help me but that beauty.
There was a dawn I remember when my soul
heard something from your soul.
I drank water from your spring,
and felt the current take me.
Rumi


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Poem 34

This is not a day for asking questions,
Not a day on any calendar.
This day is conscious of itself.
This day is a lover,
Bread and gentleness,
More manifest than saying can say.
Rumi


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Poem 35

In your light
I learn how to love.
In your beauty, how to make poems.
You dance inside my chest,
where no one sees you,
but sometimes I do,
and that sight
becomes this art.
Rumi


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Poem 36

In this world of trickery, emptiness is what your soul wants.
Rumi


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Poem 37

Flowers open every night across the sky
as the peace of keeping a vigil kindles the emptiness.
Rumi


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Poem 38

This is how I would die into the love I have for you:
as pieces of cloud dissolve in sunlight.
Rumi


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Poem 39

How will you know the difficulties of being human,
if you're always flying off to blue perfection?
Where will you plant your grief seeds?
Workers need ground to scrape and hoe,
not the sky of unspecified desire.
Rumi


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Poem 40

I saw grief drinking a cup
of sorrow and called out,
"It tastes sweet, does it not?"
"You've caught me," grief answered,
"and you've ruined my business.
How can I sell sorrow,
when you know it's a blessing.?"
Rumi


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Poem 41

Love is that that never sleeps, nor even rests,
nor stays for long with those that do.
Love is language that cannot be said,
or heard.
Rumi


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Poem 42

Love lit a fire in my chest,
and anything that wasn't love left: intellectual subtlety,
philosophy books, school.
All I want now to do or hear is poetry.
Rumi


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Poem 43

Love perfected and whole, you arrive.
Words throng my soul but none come out.
A traveler meets his joy and his despair at once.
Dying of thirst, I stand here with spring water
flowing around my feet.
Rumi


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Poem 44

Love swells and surges the ocean
and on your robe of stormcloud sews rain designs.
Love is lightening,
and also the 'ahhh' we respond with.
Rumi


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Poem 45

My spirit
saw how dull and down I was
and came and sat laughing on my bed.
Holding my brow,
"Sweetheart, I can't bear
to see you like this!"
Rumi


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Poem 46

Pale sunlight, pale the wall.
Love moves away. The light changes.
I need more grace than I thought.
Rumi


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Poem 47

I was a tiny bug, now a mountain.
I was left behind, now honored at the head.
You healed my wounded hunger and anger,
And made me a poet who sings about joy.
Rumi


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Poem 48

With your lips not here I kiss rubies to remember.
When I can't sip from you, I put my lip on the cup's lip.
Instead of reaching into your sky, I kneel
and take handfuls of earth.
Rumi


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Poem 49

You that come to birth and bring the mysteries,
your voice-thunder makes us very happy.
Roar, lion of the heart,
and tear me open.
Rumi


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Poem 50

We have this way of talking, and we have another.
Apart from what we wish and what we fear may happen,
we are alive with other life, as clear stones
take form in the mountain.
Rumi


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Poem 51

Out beyond ideas of wrong-doing and right-doing,
There is a field. I'll meet you there.
When the soul lies down in that grass,
the world is too full to talk about.
Ideas, language, even the phrase each other
doesn't make any sense.
Rumi


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