Random Rumi (by Bob and Jean Wells)

Random Rumi (by Bob and Jean Wells)

Bob WellsRandom Rumi (February 25, 2007)

» Bob tells his story (mp3, 3:09)

The poetry of Rumi first appeared to me during a sabbatical, at a "tempest-tossed" time of transition in my life. After fourteen years of active ministry as a Roman Catholic priest, the reality of my heart's longing began leading me to a new way of loving. In the year following my sabbatical, decisions made led to many changes including the blossoming of a relationship. Through all the changes and challenges Rumi remained a companion to us in the midst of our fears and our dreams of sharing a life of intimacy and commitment. He was the earth-bound mystic who made us laugh at ourselves when the weight of tradition pressed in upon us and who gave us words to match our passionate desires to taste all of life's beauty. In the early days of what is currently a six-year married relationship, we enjoyed sharing "random Rumi" poetry moments with our bodies touching and our hearts becoming one. In such times we would listen, sometimes cry, but most often simply smile with our friend. This is the prayer of each: You are the source of my life. You separate essence from mud. You honor my soul. You bring rivers from the mountain springs. You brighten my eyes. The wine you offer takes me out of myself Into the self we share. Doing that is religion. —from The Self We Share May this marriage be a sign of compassion, A seal of happiness here and hereafter. May this marriage have a fair face and a good name, An omen as welcome As the moon in a clear blue sky. I am out of words to describe How spirit mingles in this marriage. —from This Marriage Bob and Jean Wells Brown Deer, WI (Listens to On Being Podcast)

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Keshavarz is professor of Persian & Comparative Literature at Washington University in St. Louis, and the author of several books, including Reading Mystical Lyric: The Case of Jalal aI-Din Rumi.

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