Thursday, January 19, 2012

Rewriting Rumi

I've been reflecting on the poem Zero Circle by Rumi this week. It feels like a beautiful puzzle, a sculpture that I can appreciate but not understand. As I began to interact with it I found myself trying to put into my own words what the translator of Rumi wrote. So here is a reflection/rephrasing of a translation of poem by a Persian Mystic.

Does true honesty demand uncertainty?
The eternal maybe?
Once we admit we are unsure, grace becomes our guide
But we cannot see where grace leads...

...we cannot even see grace.
Those who demand 'This way' or 'Over here' are only fooling themselves
And if we believe them we are fooled out of grace.

Therefore be certain of nothing,
Not even yourself
Only know you need grace.

We spin, but do not advance,
Cry, but make no sound,
Until, half dead, we collapse and let grace guide.
All of us so wrapped in beauty that there is no external commentary from our souls...

..and we become the grace we follow.

3 comments:

J. Grubbs said...

Peter, I thought this was great...UNTIL I read the final line. Now I don't know if I like it or not. Not that I have to like something to think that it is good...

Peter Johns said...

Think about it as embodying grace. Being the presence and grace of God to the rest of the world :)

JWebb said...

Thanks for the beautiful poem, Peter . . . the Norwich mystic! Well written, my friend.