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Rumi, the boiling chickpea and the cook

In Healing Words, Loss, Grief and Hope on August 26

Rumi - Chickpea to Cook


That’s what I feel like. A boiled chickpea, left to simmer for a bit and then boiled some more. Each boiling making me wiser, fiercely woken up, humbler. 18 months ago I didn’t realise that I needed the boiling that caring for a precious old soul would give me.This flavouring of intense loss and the spiced rice gifts of grief, living side by side with tamarind tears. Standing at the ragged edge of a new frontier, path ahead unknown, couldn’t – wouldn’t have happened without these boilings.  As each of the days passed, I was acutely aware of my steaming transformation. Sometimes it was too damn hot. I burnt. But I couldn’t get out of the kitchen. The cook kept knocking me back in to the pot.

I’m still a fool and so like the chickpea to the cook I’ll say one day “Boil me some more. Hit me with the skimming spoon. I can’t do this by myself.” But first cook, please let me simmer awhile. Let the little sizzling bubbles bump against my smooth nutty body until we dance like Fred and Ginger in a jacuzzi overlooking the liminal horizon. Let me be slow cooked so I can sink into this space ahead of me and fully absorb the marination of time gone by and the new ingredients you will add to me.


RUMI     (translated by Coleman Banks)

In the final days of finishing a contract, every part of me is ready for a much needed soulbattical (attempt number 3). I’m going slightly delirious at the thought of it. Like an out of control perseid shower shooting all over the place. My heart bursts with a HUGE thank you to the ever wonderful Rumi for THIS poem (intravenous poetic medication), to the boss who gave me a gift of a contract that allowed me the space to grieve whilst working and now the opportunity to slow down.

And to head cook Dad, a former chickpea who boiled before me, controlling it with prayer and practice. And finally alongside me, boiling together, preparing me and now encouraging my animal soul from Beyonderland. THANK YOU.

Rumi - Chickpea to Cook

For certain I will boil once again but for now, it’s simmer-time.

3 comments... (add a comment)

  1. Love this and I love you analogy wit the chick peas. ( and BTW I love chick peas, falafel is my favorite) Beautiful Dal.

  2. Absolutely love this… your words, Rumi’s words, the story you weave so beautifully and your voice…. so very, very heartwarming ….

  3. Wow – such beautiful, powerful writing, made all the more powerful by hearing your voice. I love your use of words, such as ‘soulbattical’ and ‘beyonderland’. They are unique and convey so much!

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