The Guest House

The Guest House

This being human is a guest house.

Every morning a new arrival.

A joy, a depression, a meanness,

some momentary awareness comes

As an unexpected visitor.

Welcome and entertain them all!

Even if they’re a crowd of sorrows,

who violently sweep your house

empty of its furniture,

still treat each guest honorably.

He may be clearing you out

for some new delight.

The dark thought, the shame, the malice,

meet them at the door laughing,

and invite them in.

Be grateful for whoever comes,

because each has been sent

as a guide from beyond.

-Rumi (translated by Coleman Barks)

2 comments

  1. http://peacefulrivers.homestea… also includes many more of Coleman Barks’ beautiful translations of the great Sufi poet Jalal ad-Din Muammad Rumi.

    • Xanthe on February 10, 2011 at 11:31 pm

    especially this –

    Welcome and entertain them all!

    Even if they’re a crowd of sorrows,

    who violenty sweep your house

    empty of its furniture,

    still treat each guest honorably.

    He may be clearning you out

    for some new delight.

    I like this so much better than

    You’ve got to move on

    a bromide often given to the broken hearted.

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