Friday, March 8, 2013

Rubaiyat of Omar Khayyam 3

Wake! For the Sun, who scatter'd into flight 
The Stars before him from the Field of Night, 
Drives Night along with them from Heav'n, and strikes 
The Sultan's Turret with a Shaft of Light.

Before the phantom of False morning died, 
Methought a Voice within the Tavern cried, 
"When all the Temple is prepared within, 
Why nods the drowsy Worshipper outside?"

And, as the Cock crew, those who stood before 
The Tavern shouted--"Open then the Door! 
You know how little while we have to stay, 
And, once departed, may return no more."

Now the New Year reviving old Desires, 
The thoughtful Soul to Solitude retires, 
Where the White Hand Of Moses on the Bough 
Puts out, and Jesus from the Ground suspires.

Iram indeed is gone with all his Rose, 
And Jamshyd's Sev'n-ring'd Cup where no one knows; 
But still a Ruby kindles in the Vine, 
And many a Garden by the Water blows,

And David's lips are lockt; but in divine 
High-piping Pehlevi, with "Wine! Wine! Wine! 
Red Wine!"--the Nightingale cries to the Rose 
That sallow cheek of hers t' incarnadine.

Come, fill the Cup, and in the fire of Spring 
Your Winter-garment of Repentance fling: 
The Bird of Time has but a little way 
To flutter--and the Bird is on the Wing.

Whether at Naishapur or Babylon, 
Whether the Cup with sweet or bitter run, 
The Wine of Life keeps oozing drop by drop, 
The Leaves of Life keep falling one by one.

Each Morn a thousand Roses brings, you say; 
Yes, but where leaves the Rose of Yesterday? 
And this first Summer month that brings the Rose 
Shall take Jamshyd and Kaikobad away.

Well, let it take them! What have we to do 
With Kaikobad the Great, or Kaikhosru? 
Let Zal and Rustum bluster as they will, 
Or Hatim call to Supper--heed not you

With me along the strip of Herbage strown 
That just divides the desert from the sown, 
Where name of Slave and Sultan is forgot-- 
And Peace to Mahmud on his golden Throne!

A Book of Verses underneath the Bough, 
A Jug of Wine, a Loaf of Bread--and Thou 
Beside me singing in the Wilderness-- 
Oh, Wilderness were Paradise enow!

Some for the Glories of This World; and some 
Sigh for the Prophet's Paradise to come; 
Ah, take the Cash, and let the Credit go, 
Nor heed the rumble of a distant Drum!

Look to the blowing Rose about us--"Lo, 
Laughing," she says, "into the world I blow, 
At once the silken tassel of my Purse 
Tear, and its Treasure on the Garden throw."

And those who husbanded the Golden grain, 
And those who flung it to the winds like Rain, 
Alike to no such aureate Earth are turn'd 
As, buried once, Men want dug up again.

The Worldly Hope men set their Hearts upon 
Turns Ashes--or it prospers; and anon, 
Like Snow upon the Desert's dusty Face, 
Lighting a little hour or two--is gone.

Think, in this batter'd Caravanserai 
Whose Portals are alternate Night and Day, 
How Sultan after Sultan with his Pomp 
Abode his destined Hour, and went his way.

They say the Lion and the Lizard keep 
The Courts where Jamshyd gloried and drank deep: 
And Bahram, that great Hunter--the Wild Ass 
Stamps o'er his Head, but cannot break his Sleep.

Omar Khayyam's Born: 18 May 1048 in Nishapur, Persia (now Iran)
Died: 4 Dec 1131 in Nishapur, Persia (now Iran)
His full name was Ghiyath al-Din Abu'l-Fath Umar ibn Ibrahim Al-Nisaburi al-Khayyami  means 'tent maker' played on the meaning of his own name when he wrote:-
Khayyam, who stitched the tents of science,
Has fallen in grief's furnace and been suddenly burned,
The shears of Fate have cut the tent ropes of his life,
And the broker of Hope has sold him for nothing!
Omar Khayyam was an Islamic scholar who was a poet as well as a mathematician. He compiled astronomical tables and contributed to calendar reform and discovered a geometrical method of solving cubic equations by intersecting a parabola with a circle

Syafuan Gani
Doha, Qatar.

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