September 30th is the birthday of Hz Mawlana Rumi. The excellent Darvish blog has a nice reminder too. Here’s a poem form the Diwan Shams-e-Tabrizi which offers an insight into the secret of Mawlana’s popularity.

Shall I tell you our secret?
We are charming thieves who steal hearts
and never fail because we are
the friends of the One.
The time for old preaching is over
we aim straight at the heart.
If the mind tries to sneak in and take over
we will string it up without delay.
We turn poison into medicine
and our sorrows into blessings.
All that was familiar,
our loved ones and ourselves
we had to leave behind.

Blessed is the poem that comes through me
but not of me because the sound of my own music
will drown the song of Love.

— Ghazal (Ode) 424
Translated by Azima Melita Kolin
and Maryam Mafi