Monday, February 23, 2015

The Rubáiyát of Omar Khayyam

Seven Cloves-Tatlı Dillim

The Rubáiyát(Quatrains) of Omar Khayyam(Excerpt)
The Persian astronomer,mathematician & poet Omar Khayyam

Translated by Hans van Rossum
based on the French translation by Franz Toussaint.
(The original in persian language)

Everyone knows that I never mumbled prayers.
Everyone also knows I never tried to hide my faults.
I don't know whether a higher Judge and a
higher Kindness exist - but still,
I am full of confidence as I have
always been true to myself.

Which is of most value?
To enter a tavern questioning your conscience,or to postrate
In a mosque with a blasted soul?
I do not concern myself with wondering if I have a master and what he will decide of me in the day of judgement.

Look with compassion
at the heavy drinkers. Know, that you too
have your weaknesses. If you want to live in peace
and clarity, then look at the poor and the handicapped
carrying the burden of their misery,
and see how fortunate you are!

Live in such way, that your
righteousness and knowledge does
not trouble others. Be calm and master of yourself.
Don't allow yourself to be aggressive.
If you truly want to live in peace,
smile at your Fate.

How sad, a heart that
does not know how to love, that
does not know what it is to be drunk with love.
If you are not in love, how can you enjoy
the blinding light of the sun,
the soft light of the moon?

This earthen bowl
may have been made from the ashes
of a man in love, suffering under the indifference
of a woman. The ear of the bowl? It was his arm
around the neck of his beloved.

Look at this
infinite season of hope,
of souls impatient to wake up,
of our search for a lonely place rich with scents.
Is each flower the fragrant hand of Moses,
each breeze the breath of Jesus?

Man cannot confidently go his own way
if he has not eaten of the fruits of truth.
Once Truth is glimpsed within the labyrinth of knowledge,
one knows that the days that have passed and the days that
are still to come do not differ from the disappointing
first day after Creation.

Beyond the earth,
beyond the farthest skies
I try to find Heaven and Hell.
Then I hear a solemn voice that says:
"Heaven and hell are inside."

Let's assume that you have finally solved
the riddle of the creation - what's your fate?
Let's assume that you found the deepest layers of
truth - what will be your fate? Let's assume that
you have lived a hundred happy years and
that you will live another hundred -
what will be your fate?

The most outstanding scholars of history
were walking in the darkness of ignorance.
And still, they were considered the torchbearers
of their age. What did they do? They left us
some confused thoughts
and passed away.

My heart asked me:
"I want to know, to understand.
Teach me, Khayyam, you that have worked so hard."
And I replied by saying: "A." And then my heart said:
"Now I know; the A is the first letter of
an infinite number of words."

There are too many tears in my eyes!
The fires of Hell are no more than sparks of fire
as compared to the flames that consume me inside.
Paradise? For me it means
a moment of peace.

Old world, where
the horses of Day and Night
are galloping through, you are like
the old palaces where kings dreamt
of fame and of compassion,
and woke up crying.

The southern wind
has withered the rose
for which the nightingale sang its song.
Should we grieve for that rose or for ourselves?
When death has already paled our cheeks
other roses will be flowering.

Millions of centuries
Have seen dawn, have seen twilight.
Millions of centuries stars have passed through the sky.
Walk the earth cautiously. That lump of soil
you almost trampled down may have been
the eye of a child needing help.

Who knows whether this daffodil,
softly moving on the side of the brook,
touches with its roots the lips of a perished woman.
Let your feet touch the grass lightly. Remind
yourself that that grass grows off the dust
of so many faces shining like tulips.

Listen to what your common sense
tells you all day: "Life is short.
You have nothing in commom with plants
that will grow again
after being pruned."

The old palace of Bahram
is now a refuge for gazelles.
Lions roam where musicians played their songs.
Bahram, who once caught wild donkeys, now sleeps
under that hill where wild donkeys graze.

I am not afraid of death.
I prefer that inevitable event
to the other, forced upon me at the moment
I was born. For what is life? A posession entrusted
to me without my say, and which I will,
time come, give back indifferently.

I received the blow I expected.
My love left me. While she still loved me
it was easy to look down on the importance of her love
and to praise the renouncing of all possessions.
But let this thought comfort me: I was alone,
even while she still loved me.

When your soul and mine
have left our bodies and we are
burried alongside each other,
a Potter may one day mould
the dust of both of us
into the same clay.

Friend, don't plan for tomorrow.
Do you even know whether you can finish the
sentence you've just started? Tomorrow we may
be far away from this caravan and may already have
joined those that died 7000 years ago.

It's long since my childhood joined
all things dead. Springtime of my life, you are
now where all past springs have gone. O, my childhood,
you passed by and I didn't even notice. Your departure was as gradual as the passing of spring - a litle bit each day.

Listen to this great secret:
When the first daybreak brought light
upon earth, Adam had no more power than to
give names to what already was there:

Before you can caress a face as beautiful
as a rose, how many thorns you must extract from your flesh?
Look at this comb.It once was a piece of wood.What agony it
suffered when it was cut from its tree.But now it is in full
contact with the sweet-smelling hair of a young woman.

The dome-shaped sky
under which we wander;
I compare it with a magic lantern,
whose lamb is the sun and whose screen
is the world on which our images
are moving.

A rose said: "I am the most beautiful
creation on earth. Would a perfume maker
dare picking me?" Then a nightingale sang:
"One day of happyness is followed
by a year of tears."

Each morning the rose overshadows tulip, hyacinth
and violet with its bright colour.But then the sun rises
and whithers this radiant competitor.Each new morning
my heart feel heavier again,but your glance
makes me forget my sorrows.

How frail is humanity!
How inevitable our fate!
We make promises we don't keep and our
failures leave us indifferent. Myself, I often
act like I am intoxicated. But my excuse is
that I am drunk with love.

Dervish, take off that bright nice-coloured garb,
of which you are so proud, and which you didn't possess
at the time of your birth. Dress yourself instead in the
cloth of the poor. Passers-by may not greet you,
but you will hear the angels sing in your heart.

To a wise man sorrow and joy are inseparable,
as are good and bad. Everything that has a beginning
must have an end. Therefore, do ask yourself whether you have
reason to be happy about the good things that come your way
or to grieve over your unexpected trials.

When you are so full of sorrow
that you can't walk, can't cry anymore,
think about the green foliage that sparkles after
the rain. When the daylight exhausts you, when
you hope a final night will cover the world,
think about the awakening of a young child.

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