The prolific collection of inspirational poetry written by the Persian mystic and dervish, Jalal ad-Din Muhammad Rumi, more popularly known simply as Rumi, has been a source of joy and introspection for loyal followers since the early days of the 13th century
Born in 1207 in Khorasan, ancient middle Persia, the enduring universal appeal of Rumi’s poetry may be rooted in a philosophy which transcends the confinement of imposed boundaries in favor of the language of love, tolerance, goodness and the evolution of one’s soul.
Rumi’s works, most notably The Masnavi series, has been transposed into various formats and translated into many of the world’s languages. Notable English translators of Rumi’s work include Arthur John Arberry, John Moyne and Reynold A. Nicholson. More recently, Coleman Banks, who neither speaks or reads Persian, has nonetheless authored translations which have shined a light on Rumi’s work. The collective effort of these translations has resulted in Rumi being the most popular poet in the US.
The anniversary of Rumi’s death in mid-December of 1273 is still commemorated annually at the Sheb-i Arus celebration in Konya Turkey.
Please enjoy the sampling of contemporary Rumi translations by Coleman Banks in collaboration with John Moyne, A.J. Arberry and Reynold Nicholson featured below.