"Out beyond ideas of wrongdoing and rightdoing, there is a field. I'll meet you there." Rumi, 13th century Islamic Sufi poet
These are some of my favorite quotes by Rumi, the 13th century Islamic Sufi poet and mystic from
Doris reminded me of Rumi and Rumi reminds me of Loren, whose spirit has perhaps come round in another form, perhaps in the form of Doris herself, whom Loren adored.
Aha. So this is the field about which Rumi teaches. It's the field beyond the barriers we build to the love we seek.
Yes, that's it! We "connected on other levels." Without the ability to speak and participate in daily conversations beyond "good day, the weather is good, I don't understand, but yes and no,." I felt a kinship beyond words, a bond that neither time nor distance nor language barrier can sever.
So this too is the field Rumi told about.
Ah Mary Oliver! You're there too. You write about it in your poetry. So this is why I love your poetry; this is why I read and reread your poems, like a dervish in a Sama ceremony. I feel it; the field where wisdom resides, along with the souls of all those we have loved and lost. A field of light and love, and miracles.
I haven't felt this close to Loren in a long time.
What is There Beyond Knowing, by Mary Oliver (New and Selected Poems 2, 2005)
What is there beyond knowing that keeps
calling to me? I can't
turn in any direction
but it's there. I don't mean
the leaves' grip and shine or even the thrush's
silk song, but the far-off
fires, for example,
of the stars, heaven's slowly turning
theater of light, or the wind
playful with its breath,
or time that's always rushing forward,
or stanind still
in the same -- what shall I say --
What I know
I could put into a pack
as if it were bread and cheese, and carry it
on one shoulder
important and honorable, but so small!
While everything else continues, unexplained
and unexplainable. How wonderful it is
to follow a thought quietly
to its logical end.
I have done this a few times.
But mostly I just stand in the dark field,
in the middle of the world, breathing
in and out. Life so far doesn't have any other name
but breath and light, wind and rain.
If there's a temple, I haven't found it yet.
I simply go on drifting, in the heaven of the grass
and the weeds.
White Owl Flies Into and Out of the Field, Mary Oliver, Owls and Other Fantasies, 2003