Thirteenth century ecstatic poet, Jelaluddin Rumi, has been part of my daily literary meal of late. Sandwiched in time between St. Francis of Assisi and Meister Eckhart, Rumi's mysticism is stunningly present, green and alive. Qualities I strive to live: presence, awareness of all that lives around me.

For example, today the undergrowth in the forest went from swollen gray sticks to pale green and vibrant crimson, with sprinklings of white and yellow. What seemed dead yesterday was only dormant. A month or so ago I noticed the fragile stems of apple trees at the orchard had plumped and reddened. I couldn't see it when I looked straight on, but against the backdrop of snow, as I walked past, the trees were obviously changing, awakening.

As I've planned this rug, I've kept lines of a Rumi poem in my mind:

Lord, the air smells good today,
straight from the mysteries
within the inner courts of God.
A grace like new clothes thrown
across the garden, free medicine for everybody.
The trees in their prayer, the birds in praise,
the first blue violets kneeling.
Whatever came from Being is caught up in being, drunkenly
forgetting the way back.

I want to be "caught up in being", and that is one grace of hooking. I cannot hook fast, I cannot hook without looking at the world, I cannot hook without feeling the color of each and every strip of wool as it slips between my fingers.

Some of my initial sketches and color plans including the very first where I copied the Rumi poem from a source now unremembered:

And a warm thank you to Mary Logue for suggesting I might find Rumi inspiring. As always, she was right.