For several years, the thirteenth-century mystical poet Jalaluddin Rumi has been the best-selling poet in the United States. Rumi is not alone, however, but an extraordinarily expressive representative of a vast, thousand-year-old tradition of Persian mystical poetry-a magnificent, still-living tradition that speaks a common language. Love's Alchemy is one of the first books to introduce the wider tradition of Sufi mystical poetry and its greatest writers to the English language. While many recent bestsellers of Sufi poetry have been interpretations of the poems made from other English translations, translators David and Sabrineh Fideler work from the original Persian sources. "Love's Alchemy" offers faithful yet elegant translations from the Sufi tradition of 150 of the best poems written in roba'i form: concise, tightly focused meditations that span only four lines in the original Persian, but which can reveal worlds of meaning.
The poems and mystical epigrams collected here represent all the major Sufi poets, including Rumi, and explore many aspects of human life and the spiritual path, but centre on the liberating power of love-which possesses the power to lead us beyond our isolated selves to experience a larger vision of reality.