The Book of Clouds by Oludamini Ogunnaike
Not yet published
FORTHCOMING TITLE. COMING APRIL 1ST 2024.
The Book of Clouds is a collection of English-language Sufi poetry. This compilation of ghazals, quatrains, and qasidas praises and describes Divine love, loss, insight, gratitude, and mystery, bringing the forms, themes, and images of classical Islamicate poetry into English verse. Seeking to demonstrate the unique power of this tradition of thinking and speaking lyrically: to sing what can not be said but must be expressed, these poems attempt to express many of the insights and teachings of the Sufi tradition in one of the main forms of its expression: moving lyrical poetry. Sufism is concerned with forms of knowledge and realization that exceed prosaic description, and thus its main linguistic expressions have been and continue to be literary and poetic.
While there are many books about Sufism and translations of classical Sufi poets such as Rumi in English, few of these works carry over the distinct marriage of form and meaning, the characteristic poetic form, that animate much of the tradition of Sufi literature in its original languages. This volume allows for the appreciation of this central aspect of the tradition of Sufism, with reviewer writing that it “open[s] up the treasure chest of Sufi poetry for Western readers.”