Jelaluddin Rumi (1207-1273) is considered by most to be the greatest of the Sufi mystical poets and one of the most highly regarded saints from any tradition.
Some short, some longer, each writing is a treasure. The more you read (or listen if you've been fortunate to get the audio condensed version from this work) the deeper each verse becomes. I've owned the printed copy for years and every read brings new wonders and old friends.
The cream of Rumi is brought to this work and Coleman Barks does wonderful interpretations. The work as a whole weaves a tapestry that, in the end, leaves you feeling part weaver and part thread. The possibility of the "Beloved" as "Lover" becomes manifest. The drunk, intoxicated by the bliss of the presence of God, overflows with sacred wine and wants to dance. The sharing of a deep spiritual presence at dawn with those nearest you becomes a yearning that you want each and every day.
This book is a cornerstone in the rediscovery of Rumi and Islam for that matter. It provides a glimpse, from the lovers' point of view, into a world traditionally dominated by the warrior spirit.
After reading you yearn for the association of others who have similar thoughts. You realize that "the pot drips what's in it" and you yearn to associate with gentle people who enjoy this book as much as you.
Certainly "Open Secret" is a must read and a must own. It is every bit worth the price and a classic in the genre.
In this collection fewer of the poems use specifically Sufi imagery than in some collections; e.g. "Late, by myself, in the boat of myself" could as easily be Buddhist or Hindu; this makes the poetry more obviously universal than some collections. There are, of course, the more specifically Sufi tavern/wine images, e.g. "They say that Paradise will be prefect / with losts of clear white wine and all the beautiful women".
These translations are meant for, and work best for, the individual reading for the spiritual content of Rumi rather than the scholar interested in Persian poetry.