Hearken to this Reed forlorn,
Breathing, even since ‘twas torn,
From its rushy bed, a strain
Of impassioned love and pain.
“The secret of my song, though near,
None can see and none can hear.
Oh, for a friend to know the sign
And mingle all his soul with mine!
‘Tis the flame of Love that fired me,
‘Tis the wine of Love inspired me.
Wouldst thou learn how lovers bleed,
Hearken, hearken to the Reed!”
~ Mevlana Jalaluddin Rumi
From ‘A Rumi Anthology’ by R.A. Nicholson.
These are the first lines of Rumi’s epic, ‘The Mathnawi’, which is one work, in several volumes that includes exquisite poetry and teaching stories set within the poetry. Mevlana Jalaluddin Rumi was a Sufi Shaykh who lived in Turkey 800 years ago, being one of the greatest Saints that the world has ever seen. He has been the most popular poets in the USA for the past ten years, with people still finding inspiration in his wisdom and beautiful language. He was the founder of the Mevlevi Sufi Order, who are famous for their Whirling Ceremony.