Three for Thursday

Coleman Barks reads What Was Said To the Rose 
by Rumi 

  • What was said to the rose that made it open  
    was said to me here in my chest.

    What was told the Cypress that made it strong
    and straight, 

    what was
    whispered the jasmine so it is what it is, 

    whatever made
    sugarcane sweet, 

    whatever was said to the inhabitants of the town of Chigil
     in Turkestan
    that makes them so handsome, 

  • whatever lets the pomegranate flower
     blush like a human face, 

    that is being said to me now. 
    I blush. 

    Whatever put eloquence in
    language, that's happening here.

    The great warehouse doors open; 
    I fill with gratitude,

    chewing a piece of sugarcane,
    in love with the one to whom every that belongs! 

    What was said to the rose that made it open
     was said to me here in my chest.

Image source

One’s Ship Comes In 
Joe Paddock
I swear
my way now will be
to continue without
plan or hope, to accept
the drift of things, to shift
from endless effort
to joy in, say,
that robin, plunging
into the mossy shallows
of my bird bath and
splashing madly till
the air shines with spray.
Joy it will be, say,
in Nancy, pretty in pink
and rumpled T-shirt,
rubbing sleep from her eyes, or
joy even in
just this breathing, free
of fright and clutch, knowing
how one’s ship comes in
with each such breath.

From American Life in Poetry  made possible by The Poetry Foundation (, publisher of Poetry magazine. It is also supported by the Department of English at the University of Nebraska-Lincoln. Poem copyright ©2009 by Joe Paddock from his most recent book of poetry, “Dark Dreaming, Global Dimming,” Red Dragonfly Press, 2009. Reprinted by permission of Joe Paddock and the publisher.   

 Coleman Barks reads Soul Of The World by Rumi 

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