For great courage the opener of Khyber's gate see,
For liberal abundance Qambar's master see,
Hafiz if you are thirsty for the fount of Grace,
With sincerity, the Saki of Kauther see.
The Poetry of Khawaja Hafiz Shirazi
This is the third and final page continuing the mystical thought of Khawaja Hafiz
Shirazi as expressed in the form of the Rubai., The English versions are not
translations - but an attempt at rendering the essence of the mystical thoughts in
English. Inevitably much of the linguistic richness cannot be translated. Hafiz
Saheb essentially presents a mystic mirror to the would be translator or reader.
The translations available say more about the translators than they do about
Hafiz. One might be forgiven for surmising that Parsi fluent readers may find the
same problem in their attempts to get to the essence of the poems. Like the thirty
birds of Farduddin Attar, when they reach the throne they find a mirror that
reflects their own inner nature. At all events one can only present the results of
this small labour to Khawaja Hafiz in the hope of acceptance and that he will
overlook its faults.
How nice it would have been if good luck had favoured me,
Or fortune befriended me against unkind destiny,
Then, when youthful eagerness took the reins from my hand,
The stirrups of mature wisdom may have steadied me.
This tyranny of yours - how long? What is it for?
You give many much sorrow and anguish. What for?
Your lover’s hands hold swords they have dipped in blood,
If they reach you this blood you must answer for.
O come to me with the wine that brings joy!
Ignore the mean mind that opposes joy.
Its advice is; ‘refrain!’ - but my lovely,
Hear my words then rise up, come and enjoy.
My love's rose-hued candle glow, how to declare?
And how can I speak of how my heart burns there?
The cause of all this heartbreaking silence is,
There is no dear friend with whom this I can share.
If got by tyranny, all worldly wealth is worthless;
Any heart-grief makes worldly wine just joyless;
Seven days pain of languishing in separation,
Makes seven thousand years of worldly pleasure pointless.
Sit with the dear friend - and your wine from that cup try to take,
Or a kiss from that slim-limbed lovely’s rose lips try to take;
One who is deeply hurting should be seeking remedy,
So say; ‘The barber’s son with his razor a slit could make’.
O son! From the mother of time your heart free,
Espouse instead the wisdom she hides from thee,
You will be bereft of any kind of worth,
If, like Hafiz, her face you too happily see.
Ah this rose flower, perhaps from my love is,
For in my heart a great sense of joy there is;
I seek always to sit in its company,
For in it the colour of constancy is.
Being parted, more than the melting candle my eyes weep,
A wine-jug sheds crimson tears, from my eyes too they seep.
The way the wine-cup overflows and the Chang’s music cries,
Overwhelmed by sorrow, tears of blood likewise I weep.
O Hafiz, turn the page on this nonsense,
Depart from sophisticated pretence,
Time for silence it is, so silent stay,
And fill your cup with the wine and silence.
When the rosebud from the jug had drunk all the wine up,
Wanting some, the narcissus held its petal cup up;
Light of heart, like a bubble, indeed is the one who,
Deeply desiring wine, the entire tavern broke up.
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