My friend, Ken is one poetry addict. In one of our “talk-about-books” conversation, he mentioned Essential Rumi. But I was not paying much attention at that time, I was more interested in literature. Then last week, I came by this book at Borders. On sale for $3.99, I called Ken right that instant to confirm if I have the right book at hand. Ken just went on and on about this book on the phone, he sure is passionate about poetry. And so, I decided to purchase it not knowing what I’m getting myself into.

I started reading it a couple nights ago and I must admit that I now know what Ken was raving about. It has become an addiction reading Rumi, even skipping my 15 minute coffee breaks and lunch hour just to read more poetry. The word “manic” turned out to be an understatement, on my current venture into this Rumi fever.

At first, I thought that Rumi and Shams were gay lovers. That it was some sort of gay poetry turned historic and ended in the pages of a book. Out of my queer curiosity, I did my own researched online. And, it looks like I’m not the only one who think that. There’s a whole cruise ship full of people (gay and straight) who thought so, too. Even a website that debates this whole affair. But as a gay reader, I’d like to think that they’re queer and dwell in that inspiration. This is poetry, for heavens sake! We all have our own mind illustration, right? But the reason why I said and think that (they’re gay), was because of the words used by Rumi in portraying his feelings for Sham. Like the words, soul and heart; which (I think) does not exist in the straight guy dictionary. But I could be wrong, too!

Regardless of gender or by-standards. I really think that Essential Rumi is a wonderful read. I had this sense of reckless longing for more, no poetry has ever given me that passion to read page after page and left enlightened by it’s radiance and essence. I’ve never been this fervid, ever!

From, I Have Five Things to Say:

First, when I was apart from you,

This world did not exist, nor any other.

Second, whatever I was looking for,

Was always you.

From, Acts of Helplessness:

If you are joyful, I am.

If you grieve, or if you’re bitter, or graceful,

I take on those qualities.

Like the shadow of a cypress tree in the meadow,

Like the shadow of a rose, I live,

Close to the rose.

If I separated myself from you,

I would turn entirely thorn.

From, Emptiness:

When you are with everyone but me, you’re with no one.

When you are with no one but me, you’re with everyone.

Instead of being so bound up with everyone, be everyone.

When you become that many, you’re nothing. Empty!



  1. Jen · August 1, 2007

    Ooh, I love Suze! Hubby loves David Bach but he’s just “eh” for me. I’m at kindergarten level when it comes to financial talk but she just makes it sound like a piece of cake. Next to Oprah, I’d love to sit down and talk with Suze.

  2. Jen · August 1, 2007

    LOL, reading my comment now, you’d think Suze Orman and I were on some kind of first-name basis hahahaha. BTW, you’ve been posting some awesome pics. Love that beach picture in Half Moon Bay ~ gorgeous! Might have to drag hubby over there… and ei, is that where there’s supposedly some ghost hanging out near a restaurant???

  3. sardonicnell · August 1, 2007

    hello jen! thanks for kind comment. you should go visit half moon bay and there beaches, it’s really nice. check san gregorio as well and their marina. i also heard about the ghost that supposedly inhabits the navio restaurant and the tea room. but so far, didn’t see any =)

    suze ormans book is fab! she talks about money and finances in the most simplest form. how i wish i’ve red this book before getting my home, would have known how to handle things better. hehehe =)

    and you know who else i really like, that good looking nate berkus from oprah’s show who does interior design. my golly, he’s a cutie! hahahah, umandar na naman ang kalandian ko, LOL =)

  4. Patty · July 7, 2008


    I came across your page researching Rumi. I was wondering about his sexuality too…and hey, you were top 10 search result on google 🙂

    I loved what you wrote about wanting to read more and more, that’s how I feel with his poems. If you’d like a good reading suggestion, Life is a dream (La Vida es Sueno) by Pedro Calderón de la Barca is a lovely play. You might enjoy the justified melancholy of Segismund.

    Well, you seem like a nice guy and I wish you the best…

    thanks so much, patty. i truly appreciate the kind words and suggestions. i’m actually looking for more good reads, and i’ll check out the ones you mentioned. lately, i’ve been reading poetry by anna akhmatova and brenda shaughnessy. it’s more about love, loss, sex, rejection and pain. my typical melancholic kind of poetry, hehehe. thanks so much for the visit and God bless 😀

  5. The Lost Poet · August 11, 2011

    Its really unfortunate that people cannot understand the nature of divine love between the Guru and his disciple, which is the only form of unselfish love in this world. I feel the same way about my Guru like Rumi did for Shams, and I assure you that I am not gay. (lol)

    The trouble is that most western scholars are biased when it comes to orient and they see only what they want to see. So Rumi becomes gay and the Shiva Linga becomes phallic. Its as outrageous as saying that Lady Liberty is holding a giant toy in her hands. (If you know what I mean… hehehehehe)

    The relationship b/w Guru and disciple cannot be understood by literature. For it is not an intellectual thing. You must be a follower of the path of self-realization. Guru bestows the sacred knowledge upon you, THAT YOU ARE GOD! ANA AL HAQ! You cannot help but fall in love with the guy who showed you this path.

    It has been a common practice in Hindu and Sufi spiritual poetry to compose verses in honor of God and Guru, which would seem romantic to the ignorant mind. It is indeed romantic; it is romance of the highest degree; but it is in no way sexual.

    I can quote innumerable verses written by various Hindu saints that can be interpreted as love songs when not looked in the right context. In fact, many lovers DO use their verses to express their worldly love.

    He who has never been in love will not understand properly the tragic stories of Shakespeare. Similarly you will never understand the poetry of Rumi, if you do not have a self-realized Guru.

    SOHAM…. SHIVOHAM – I am That.. I am Truth

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )


Connecting to %s