The Ship Sunk in Love

 My evening glows with Rumi’s presence. I am posting poems that I have been reading today. Contrary to several purists, I enjoy all the modern translations of Rumi that have greatly helped in communicating his message across the globe. Each translator adds beauty to the original gems in Persian. 


For my heart is Love’s dwelling.
If You will burn Your house, burn it, Love!
Who will say, ‘It’s not allowed’?
Burn this house thoroughly!
The lover’s house improves with fire.
From now on I will make burning my aim,
From now on I will make burning my aim,
for I am like the candle: burning only makes me brighter.
Abandon sleep tonight; traverse fro one night
the region of the sleepless.
Look upon these lovers who have become distraught
and like moths have died in union with the One Beloved.
Look upon this ship of God’s creatures
and see how it is sunk in Love.

Mathnawi VI, 617-623
The Rumi Collection, Edited by Kabir Helminski

…..And a few translations by Annemarie Schimmel

Should Love’s heart rejoice unless I burn?
ONCE a beloved asked her lover: “Friend,
You have seen many places in the world!
Now – which of all these cities was the best?
He said: “The city where my sweetheart lives!”

FROM MYSELF I am copper,
through You, friend, I am gold.
From myself I’m a stone, but
through You I am a gem!

O SUN, fill our house once more with light!
Make happy all your friends and blind your foes!
Rise from behind the hill, transform the stones
To rubies and the sour grapes to wine!
O Sun, make our vineyard fresh again,
And fill the steppes with houris and green cloaks!
Physician of the lovers, heaven’s lamp!
Rescus the lovers! Help the suffering!
Show but your face – the world is filled with light!
But if you cover it, it’s the darkest night!

The photo on top – Inside Rumi’s tomb – was taken by me

Photos below taken in misty hills – are courtesy JC 

Published in: on August 21, 2006 at 4:08 pm  Comments (4)  

The URI to TrackBack this entry is:

RSS feed for comments on this post.

4 CommentsLeave a comment

  1. Salaam:
    Your excellent selection of Rumi’s poety fills my heart with love and gratitiude. Thank you.

    Ya Haqq!

  2. thanks for sharing. Blessed be Rumi’s soul. how many souls he has nourished with his wonderful worlds.

    today i cross posted the message of Jostein Gaarder that i read from ur post to one of the local language community blog. i provided link to ur blog as credit.

    thanks a lot.

    here is the blog: (the main page). a Bangaldeshi Blog in Bangla (or Bengali) language.

    my post,

  3. Raza Rumi wrote:
    “Contrary to several purists, I enjoy all the modern translations of Rumi that have greatly helped in communicating his message across the globe. Each translator adds beauty to the original gems in Persian.”

    Assalaamu Aalaikum,

    I disagree with this statement. When something is translated into another language or even if written in one’s own words in the same language, the beauty of the original work diminishes and does not increase as you have stated, unless the translator is better than the orignal writer.

    Simply understanding something in one’s own native language after being translated from another language doesn’t mean that beauty has been “added” to the original work.

    The original thoughts and feelings are lost once something is translated.

  4. Zettabyte

    A wild rambling rose of a woman,
    with a smoky smile and jaunty hips.
    Tan as a summer’s day.

    Brisk, bracing, brusque.
    Like a March wind.

    Cool air pours off a sheer blue glacier.

    Ice lipped steel bergs
    Way down under…

    Pieces of the sky
    scattered over the glassy waters of a lake.

    Mirror world lake reflected.
    A reflex action.
    A world dopplegangered.
    One twin clear and sure.
    The other rippled by winds of fate and chance.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: