Adapted from an article originally appearing in the Dallas Morning News.
In the early morning hour,
Just before dawn, lover and beloved wake
And take a drink of water.
She asks, "Do you love me or yourself more?
Really, tell the absolute truth."
He says, "There is nothing left of me.
I'm like a ruby held up to the sunrise.
Is it still a stone, or a world
Made of redness? It has no resistance to sunlight."
This is how Hallaj said, I am God,
And told the truth!
The ruby and the sunrise are one.
One reason Rumi has become and remained so popular is that his poetry seems to fit itself easily to the varied needs and experiences of an entire spectrum of readers. A couple could read the preceding poem together and see their passion reflected in Rumi's words, while seekers after spiritual meaning could find in it a description of their own passion for God
Not Christian or Jew or Muslim, not Hindu,
Buddhist, sufi, or zen. Not any religion
or cultural system. I am not from the East
or the West, nor out of the ocean or up
from the ground, not natural or ethereal, not
composed of elements at all. I do not exist,
am not an entity in this world or the next,
did not descend from Adam or Eve or any
origin story. My place is placeless, a trace
of the traceless. Neither body nor soul.