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A Year with Rumi: Daily Readings

4.42  ·  Rating details ·  1,073 ratings  ·  67 reviews
Coleman Barks has played a central role in making the Sufi mystic Rumi the most popular poet in the world. A Year with Rumi brings together 365 of Barks's elegant and beautiful translations of Rumi's greatest poems, including fifteen never-before-published poems.

Barks includes an Introduction that sets Rumi in his context and an Afterword musing on poetry of the mysterious
Hardcover, 432 pages
Published October 31st 2006 by HarperOne
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I bought and started "A Year with Rumi" on the morning of January 1, 2014 and finished on the evening of December 31, so for me, this truly was a year-long experience. I couldn't be happier that I did it.

Coleman Barks is the preeminent translator of Rumi's texts and has compiled a wonderful collection here. Each piece is thought-provoking; many days are more challenging than they are melodic or calming. Barks very, very loosely organizes poems in accordance with the Northern Hemisphere seasons
Jan 04, 2010 rated it it was amazing
I only spent about a half-year with Rumi, but that was because the poetry is so wonderful and Rumi's voice so startlingly fresh that I raced through this splendid volume. If you haven't run across this remarkable 15th Century poet before, this fat volume is a good place to start. You'll find an arresting image, thought, or musing on nearly every page.
Oct 21, 2009 rated it it was amazing
My favourite book of poems, I read them 3 years ago and I like to read them again every couple of years. Regardless that Rumi lived in the 13th century, his poems are modern and relevant to our time, their meaning did not change with time and their beauty speaks with the heart.
Atiqah Ghazali
Jan 18, 2019 rated it liked it
Shelves: poetry, rental-xbuy
This book is the mastermind and the responsible one in making Rumi as famous as he is now in US. Rumi has become pop-culture phenomenon because of this book. However, there is something you need to know about Coleman Barks before we can even talk about this book. "Barks does not speak or read Persian; his 'translations' are therefore technically paraphrases. Barks bases his paraphrases entirely on other English translations of Rumi which include renderings by John Moyne and Reynold A. Nicholson. ...more
Linda Hollingsworth
Aug 19, 2012 rated it really liked it
I have been re-reading these short writings of the 13th century poet, Rumi, for three or four years; the length of each one is ideal for a thoughtful drift into sleep each evening. His poetry obliterates all dogma of any one religion in favor of innate wisdom which explains why it is read and quoted the world over.

A quote from May 27

..."At night before sleeping you take off the tight shoes,
and your soul releases into a place it knows.
Dream and glide deeper."
Aug 21, 2020 rated it liked it
A collection of 366 poems by Sufi mystic poet Rumi. The collection contains a wide range of poems, some very sensual and beautiful, some silly and a few beyond my comprehension or appreciation. Rufi’s poems reflect on themes from many traditions, including Zen, Islam, Tao and Judaism. Many of the poems were uplifting; many gave me much to ponder. I read the book twice and will read it again.
Dec 16, 2019 rated it it was amazing
Love starting each day with Rumi.
Jan 18, 2014 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: poetry
Born in Afghanistan in the early thirteenth century, Rumi and his family moved to what is now Turkey where he wrote these mystic Sufi poems. Mr. Barks’ interpretations present the poems in an accessible, modern format (he provides some background and an explanation of his working methods in the introduction).

The modern poet Robert Bly talks about “leaping” poetry, which is what these poems do -- taking the reader with them in their abrupt but poignant transitions between images and ideas:

Nov 22, 2017 rated it liked it
My favorites:
January 11: Backpain
January 17: Love Moves Away
February 25: My Worst Habit
May 4: The Most Alive Moment
July 20: People Want You to Be Happy
August 29: Harsh Evidence
September 11: Dance
October 14: Autumn Rose Elegy
October 31: Undressing
November 6: Unmarked Boxes
November 22: The Guest House
December 23: Cry Easily
Mike Zone
Jan 05, 2013 rated it liked it
A superb introduction to not only the Sufi poet but to Coleman Barks as well. Some of the poems did prompt to reflect and meditate on current scenes in my life, yet not all the poems hit home... which is fine because that is what poetry tends to do.
Feb 27, 2010 added it
Everything that is important I learn from this book!
Sep 07, 2011 rated it really liked it
I enjoyed the poems in this book a lot. They are some of the best Rumi poems.
Feb 26, 2012 rated it it was amazing
Rumi is timeless! No matter how many times I read through this day book--there is something new that hits me. I enjoy spending the year with his beautiful words and elegant thoughts.
Rumi rocks!
Feb 07, 2016 rated it really liked it
This was my first introduction to Rumi; life changer. Really beautiful, powerful words.
Apr 27, 2009 rated it it was amazing
I start my day with it.
 Ƹ̴Ӂ̴Ʒ Jenn Ƹ̴Ӂ̴Ʒ Schu
What a journey, reading Rumi' s beautiful words of wisdom has been a true pleasure.
May 28, 2020 added it
Recommends it for: NO ONE!
Shelves: do-not-read
There are those who believe a poetry can't be translated. To be fully appreciated, a poem must be read in its original language. I don't know whether or not I agree, but I can think of a number of examples that support this position. Perhaps the most prominent example is the poetry of Rumi. 

Out beyond ideas 
of wrongdoing and rightdoing, 
there is a field. 
I'll meet you there.

This is perhaps the most popular poem attributed to Rumi. And yet it wasn't written by Rumi. It was written by Coleman Bark
Jackie Petroulias
Dec 05, 2019 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: poetry
A lover looks at creekwater
and wants to be that quick to fall,
to kneel all the way down in full prostration.

A lover wants to die of his love,
like a man with dropsy who knows
that water will kill him, but he cannot deny
his thirst. A lover loves death,
which is God's way of helping us evolve
from mineral to vegetable to animal,
each onward form incorporating the others.

Then the animal becomes Adam,
and the next stage will take us beyond
what we can imagine into the mystery
of We are all returning

Do not
Chad Schuitema
Dec 31, 2018 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
A Year with Rumi

I have now completed my year with Rumi. I must confess I read him every six out of seven days. Some days were elegant. Some days were so poignant I copied the poem and hung it on my bathroom mirror. Some were so thought provoking I journaled on them in deep thought. Some were head scratchers and I have no idea what he was writing about. It was good for my soul. It was also good to see that not everything Rumi wrote spoke to my soul. I had placed him on a pedestal and while he is
Jul 15, 2019 rated it it was ok
As much as I’ve loved reading anything with Rumi poetry, this was not my favorite collection. In fact, it became so laborious to read it day by day, I finally quickly read through the rest, selecting the poems I was drawn to read. There were 2 or 3 old favorites - especially Guest House and the one with the line about kissing the ground.

There were 15 -20 new ones that were lovely and the kind of Rumi poem I usually love. That means there were close to 300 I was not crazy about.

I would recommend
Feb 21, 2019 rated it really liked it
I tried to read one entry per day, but clearly did not always do that. They were interesting, sometimes thought-provoking, but would probably be more impactful if I knew more about Rumi and his beliefs, use of symbols, way of life, etc. So maybe after reading a biography, I will pursue it again...
Miriam Jacobs
Jun 20, 2019 rated it liked it
Rumi's epigrammatic and poetic shorts are justifiably admired but like many other writers and artists whose work has been criticized recently for sexism or racism, in terms of the former it does not hold up well. Furthermore, Rumi's flaws in this regard do not require scrutiny even when you try to view the sexism as symbolic. It's just out there - bald, unwavering.
Jul 27, 2019 rated it it was amazing
Every morning, over the last year, I have started my day with Rumi. And I am better for it. There were many times I had to read the daily poem more than once, and even then there were times that I'm not sure I fully grasped it. There were other days that it just immediately resonated. Highly recommend! Now, on to a year of Mary Oliver. :)
Dec 30, 2019 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: read-2019
A daily dose of Rumi's profound and deeply rooted spiritual saying ! What a wonderful way to get up each and every morning to savor a thought inspired by Rumi. These timeless words will change you thoughts and your thinking about the beloved.
Michael Thomasson
Rumi, a daily read centers me, excellent!
Chris Kramolis
Jan 22, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Read this every day along with the Daily Stoic. Nice balancing the pragmatic with the mystic and then realizing that at the core, they are really saying the same thing. Highly recommend.
Ivana Cekovic
Mar 18, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Book for every day, for every year, for everyone's life.
Dec 30, 2018 rated it it was ok
The first half dragged but second half was better. Poetry like this isn’t for me.
Claudia Burcke
Dec 31, 2018 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
What a beautiful year spent with an amazing poet. Try this for 2019.
Mar 05, 2019 rated it it was amazing
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Jalāl ad-Dīn Muhammad Rūmī - also known as Jalāl ad-Dīn Muhammad Balkhī, Mevlânâ/Mawlānā (مولانا, "our master"), Mevlevî/Mawlawī (مولوی, "my master") and more popularly simply as Rumi - was a 13th-century Persian poet, jurist, Islamic scholar, theologian and Sufi mystic who lived in Konya, a city of Ottoman Empire (Today's Turkey). His poems have been widely translated into many of the world's lan ...more

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You know the saying: There's no time like the present...unless you're looking for a distraction from the current moment. In that case, we can't...
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“At night, I open the window
and ask the moon to come
and press its face against mine.
Breathe into me.
Close the language-door
and open the love-window.
The moon won't use the door,
only the window.”
“You left ground and sky weeping,
mind and soul full of grief.

No one can take your place in existence,
or in absence. Both mourn, the angels, the prophets,
and this sadness I feel has taken from me
the taste of language, so that I cannot say
the flavor of my being apart.”
More quotes…