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patricia motley's art

The Guest House

Jalal ad-Din Rumi

This being human is a guest house.

Every morning a new arrival.

A joy, a depression, a meaness,

some momentary awareness comes

as an unexpected visitor.

Welcome and entertain 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 whomever comes,

because each has been sent

as a guide from beyond.

(The Essential Rumi versions by Coleman Barks)

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