Page images

What highest thanks to Allah should repair?
He keeps apart our knowledge and our woes.
For every invalid might well despair
Who knew his ailing as the doctor knows.

Each one is fool enough to praise

His own opinion, and promote it:
If Islam means, to God devoted,
All live and die in Islam's ways.

New-comers build anew, the old house scout;
They go and leave it to another
Who with his planning makes a pother,
And no one builds it out.

My house who enters may upbraid
What I through many years have made :

But he must pass before the gate

If I decline his estimate.

May this little house

Thy approval win,

One might build a greater

And nothing more within.

Let the house, its fame extending,
Be estate that cannot fail ;

Through the sons the sire descending In perpetual entail.

Thou always art secure,

At large from people's mercies: Two friends, sorrowless and sure,

A cup for wine, and book of verses.

"What yield that Lokmann 5 had, indeed,
They called the ugly fellow!"
The sweetness lies not in the reed,
But all the pith is mellow.

Splendid has the Orient

Across the Middle-Ocean sprung:

Who loves Hafis's intent


Knows what Calderon has sung.

"One hand why dost thou garnish so,

More than its dues allow it?

[ocr errors]

What then would the left hand do
If the right did not endow it?

If toward Mecca one should drive
Jesus' ass, no whit would he
Better'd by the journey be;
Still an ass he would arrive.

Loose stuff flattened out

Grows only broad, not stout.

But when with stress in rigid mould
It is confined, a shape, behold:
Thus granite came in Nature's way,
And blocks thus made we call Pisé.8

Good souls, be not disturbed at evil!
The saints well know the pupils of the devil,
True, but the teaching sets the pupil right,
The manner of the good it brings to light.

"Unthanked by thee what numbers still
Remain who gave thee many a lift!"
The mention does not make me ill,
Alive my heart has every gift.

Preserve thyself in good repute
For conning matters at the root;
Who forces more will force bad fruit.

[ocr errors]

The tide of passion sends its futile strife Gainst the unfounder'd, constant land: It throws poetic pearls upon the strand, And these are clear receipts of life.

Let no one commend a fetter,

Save he who knows that unconstraint is better:
Who works cheerily in the absurd
Is by it absurdly well preferred.


`HOU hast granted many a prayer,


Though looking for some ill to fall:

Little asks the good man there,

So the danger is but small.


Little asks the good man there :
As soon as I should grant his prayer
His sudden ruin would befall.

Pity that Truth so oft is fated
To be with Error implicated,

And often thus subserves her aim:

But who cares question the fair dame?

For Madam Truth would show a flat defiance If Master Error proffered flat alliance.

To sing and talk so many strive,

That my discontent will show it!
Poesy out of the world who drive?
Every Poet!


WHAT the hammer, what the chain,
Knit thy strength and forged thy brain?
What the anvil? What dread grasp
Dared thy deadly terrors clasp?

When the stars threw down their spears,
And watered heaven with their tears,
Did He smile His work to see?

Did He who made the lamb make thee?


« PreviousContinue »