Friday, January 22, 2016

Selection from the Rubaiyât & Odes of Hâfiz

Al Ishq Al Aswad

From the Rubaiyât & Odes of Hâfiz

O breeze, my story quietly share,
My heart’s secrets, to whoever you care.
Tell not to upset or bring sorrow,
Share them with a heart that’s aware.

Blame not my tears for the secret they confessed ;
Deal gently with a heart that cannot rest !
O Sufi ! since thou knowest his desire,
Scorn not the wanderer for the lifelong quest !

Around Life's keep the rodent waters roar ;
The measure of our years is brimming o'er.
Soon, soon, O friend, the janitor of Time
Shall cast Life's chattels through the broken door.

A new challenge everyday
You keep away and delay;
When I act to close the gap
Fate says there is a bigger play.

O thou great Almoner of human need,
Who solvest all, dispensing blame and meed,
Why should I bare my secret heart to thee,
Since all my hidden secrets thou canst read ?

We hope for all things from the sky's caress,
Yet tremble as the leaf when days grow less.
You said no colour beyond black abides ;
Then why the snows upon the raven tress ?

My beloved is brighter than the sun,
Put in the heavens, my only one.
Placed the hearts upon the earth
To watch the sun’s daily run.

Methinks I hear joy beating with his wings ;
The perfume of passionate roses round me clings.
The wind has caught a story from her mouth,
Oh rare and wondrous is the tale he brings !

Great of soul ! How gladly would I give
All that I am to thee by whom I live !
If thou wouldst know the bitterness of hell,
Pour friendship's water through an empty sieve.

The rosebud hides herself for shame of Thee !
Nor drowsed Narcissus dare to look on Thee :
How can the rose her sovereignty proclaim ?
Her light is of the moon, the moon 's from Thee.

I wish that fate would cease this carnage,
And to the lovers give their due wage.
In times of youth the rein in my hands,
Now on the saddle, I ride in old age.

Till the desire of love be gratified,
Till the body's kingdom without king abide,
My hope is ever of the Court of God,
That all the gates of joy be open wide.

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