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Author's Name: Barks Coleman
Coleman Barks was born and raised in Chattanooga, Tennessee, and educated at the University of North Carolina and the University of California at Berkeley. He taught poetry and creative writing at the University of Georgia for thirty years. He is the author of numerous Rumi translations and has been a student of Sufism since 1977. His work with Rumi was the subject of an hour-long segment in Bill Moyers's Language of Life series on PBS, and he is a featured poet and translator in Bill Moyers's poetry special, "Fooling with Words." Coleman Barks is the father of two grown children and the grandfather of five. He lives in Athens, Georgia.
2007 is the "Year of Rumi," and who better than Coleman Barks, Rumi's unlikely, supremely passionate ambassador, to mark the milestone of this great poet's 800th birthday? Barks, who was recently awarded an honorary doctorate in Persian language and literature by the University of Tehran for his thirty years of translating Rumi, has collected and translated ninety new poems, most of them never published before in any form. The result is this beautiful edition titled Rumi: Bridge to the Soul. The "bridge" in the title is a reference to the Khajou Bridge in Isphahan, Iran, which Barks visited with Robert Bly in May of 2006—a trip that in many ways prompted this book. The "soul bridge" also suggests Rumi himself, who crosses cultures and religions and brings us all together to listen to his words, regardless of origin or creed. Open this book and let Rumi's poetry carry you into the interior silence and joy of the spirit, the place that unites conscious knowing with a deeper, more soulful understanding.
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