Poetry: The Soul's Friend by Rumi

The Soul's Friend
by Rumiº

Listen to your essential self, the Friend: When you feel
longing, be patient, and

also prudent, moderate with eating and drinking. Be like 
a mountain in the wind

Do you notice how little it moves? There are sweet 
illusions that arrive

to lure you away. Make some excuse to them, "I have
indigestion," or "I need

to meet my cousin." You fish, the baited hook may be fifty
or even sixty gold pieces, but

is it really worth your freedom in the ocean? When traveling,
stay close to your bag.

I am the bag that holds what you love. You can  be 
separated from me! Live

carefully in the joy of this friendship. Don't think,
But those others love me

so. Some invitations sound like the fowler's whistle
to the quail, friendly, but

not quite how you remember the call of your soul's Friend.

º(From The Soul of Rumi: A New Collection of Ecstatic Poems. Translations by Coleman Barks)


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