Flutes For Dancing

” It’s lucky to hear the
flutes for dancing
coming down the road.
The ground is glowing.
The table set in the yard.

We will drink all this wine tonight
because it’s Spring. It is.
It ‘s a growing sea.
We are clouds over the sea,
or flecks of matter
in the ocean when the ocean
seems lit from within.
I know I’m drunk
when I start this ocean talk.

Would you like to see the moon split
in half with one throw”?

This small homage to Rumi was inspired by a message I received from a friend who is traveling in Turkey. She is on a tour to promote peace. Yesterday she visited the tomb of Rumi. I am so excited for her and a little envious.

Persians and Afghanis call Rumi “Jelaluddin Balkhi.” He was born on September 30, 1207. His father was a theologian and jurist and a mystic of uncertain lineage. Rumi’s life was a fairly normal one for a religious scholar. He taught, meditated, and helped the poor. In 1244 he met a stranger who put a question to him. Shams of Tabriz was the stranger who wandered through the Middle East searching and praying for someone who “could endure his company.” He found Rumi. It is said that the questions he asked Rumi caused him to faint. Shams was a dervish and Rumi and Shams became inseparable

They spent months together without any human needs, transported into a realm of pure conversation. This ecstatic connection caused difficulties in the religious community. Rumi’s students felt neglected and Shams, sensing the trouble, disappeared as suddenly as he had appeared in Rumi’s life.

Scholars feel that the disappearance of Shams began Rumi’s transformation into a mystical artist. Rumi began to write poetry and to listen to music and sing. He began whirling and would whirl for hours at a time. Rumi spent the last twelve years of his life dictating the six volumes of his master-work. He died on December 17, 1273.

Photo by Barbara Mattio