Home  »  library  »  poem  »  Three Ghazals or Odes (Clarke trans.)

C.D. Warner, et al., comp. The Library of the World’s Best Literature.
An Anthology in Thirty Volumes. 1917.

Three Ghazals or Odes (Clarke trans.)

By Hafez (c. 1325–c. 1389)

Translation of Lieut.-Col. H. Wilberforce Clarke

FROM the garden of union with thee, [even] the gardens of Rizvān [Paradise] gain lustre of joy;

From the torment of separation from thee, [even] hell’s flame hath torment.

In the beauty of thy cheek and stature, shelter have taken

Paradise, and the tūba [tree]. For them, it [the shelter] is good; and a good place of returning [from this world].

All night, [even] as my eye [seeth, so] the stream of Paradise

Seeth in sleep the image of thy intoxicated eye [of mercy].

In every season, Spring giveth description of thy beauty;

In every book, Paradise maketh mention of thy grace.

This heart consumed, and my soul attained not to the heart’s desire;

If it had attained to its desire, it would not have poured forth blood [of grief].

Oh, many the salt-rights of thy lip and mouth,

Which they have against rent livers and roast hearts.

Think not that in thy circle [only] lovers are intoxicated [with love for thee]:

Of the state of zāhids distraught [with love] no news hast thou.

By the circle of thy [ruddy] lip [in thy face, resplendent as the sun], I knew that the jewel [lustre] of the ruby

Was produced by the sun, world-illuminating.

Open the veil. This modesty how long wilt thou practice?

With this veil, what hast thou bound save modesty?

The rose beheld thy face, and fell into the fire [of love],

Perceived thy fragrance, and through shame, became [soft and fragrant like] rose-water.

In love for thy face, Hāfiz is immersed in the sea of calamity.

Behold he dieth! Come once! Help!

Hāfiz! that life should pass in folly, permit not:

Strive; and understand the value of dear life.

[WHEN] the rose is in the bosom, wine in the hand, and the beloved to my desire,—

On such a day, the world’s Sūltān is my slave.

Say, Into this assembly bring ye no candle for to-night.

In our assembly the moon of the Friend’s face is full.

In our order [of profligates] the wine-cup is lawful; but

O Cypress, rose of body! without thy face [presence], unlawful.

In our assembly [of lovers], mix not ’itr [perfume]; for our soul

Every moment receiveth perfume from the fragrance of the tip of thy tress.

My ear is all [intent] on the voice of the reed and the melody of the harp [the instruction of the Mūrshid];

My eye is all [intent] on thy ruby lip, and on the circulation of the cup [the manifestations of glories of God in the night season].

Say ye naught of the sweetness of candy and sugar [the delights of the world];

For my desire is for thy sweet lip [the sweet stream of Divine grace, the source of endless delight].

From the time when the treasure of grief for thee was dweller in my ruined heart,

The corner of the tavern is ever my abode.

Of shame why speakest thou? For from shame is my name [renown];

Of name [renown] why askest thou? For from name [renown] is my shame.

Wine-drinker, distraught of head, profligate, and glance-player, I am:

In this city, who is that one who is not like this?

To the Muhtasib, utter not my crime; for he also

Is ever like me in desire of the drinkers of wine.

Hāfiz! sit not a moment without wine and the beloved.

’Tis the season of the rose, and of the jessamine, and of the ’Id of Siyām!

WITHOUT the beloved’s face, the rose—is not pleasant.

Without wine, spring—is not pleasant.

The border of the sward and the air of the garden

Without the [beloved of] tulip cheek—is not pleasant.

With the beloved, sugar of lip, rose of body,

[To be] without kiss and embrace—is not pleasant.

The dancing of the cypress, and the rapture of the rose,

Without the song of the hazār—is not pleasant.

Every picture that reason’s hand depicteth,

Save the picture of the [living beauteous] idol—is not pleasant.

The garden and the rose and wine, [all] is pleasant; but

Without the beloved’s society,—is not pleasant.

Hāfiz! the soul is [but] a despicable coin;

For scattering [on the true beloved] it—is not pleasant.

THAT friend by whom our house the [happy] dwelling of the Parī—was,

Head to foot, free from defect, a Parī—was.

Acceptable to the [All] Wise of mine [is] that moon. For his,

With beauty of manner, the way of one endowed with vision—was.

[My] heart said, “In hope of her, in this city I will sojourn:”

Helpless, it knew not that its friend a traveler—was.

Out from my grasp the malignant star plucked her:

Yes: what can I do? The calamity of the revolution of the moon it—was.

Not only from my heart’s mystery fell the screen;

Since the sky [time] was, screen-rending its habit—was.

Sweet was the marge of the water, and the rose and the verdure. But

Alas, that moving treasure a wayfarer—was.

Happy were those times which passed with the friend;

All without result and without knowledge the rest—was.

The bulbul [the true lover] slew himself through jealousy of this, that to the rose [the true beloved]

At morning-time [the last breath of life], with the morning breeze [the angel of death], splendor [of heavenly messages]—was.

O heart! establish an excuse. For thou art a beggar; and here,

In the kingdom of beauty, the head of a crowned one—was.

Every treasure of happiness that God gave to Hāfiz,

From the auspiciousness of the evening prayer and of the morning supplication—was.