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 Kaikobád away.

Well, let it take them! What have we to do
With Kaikobád the Great, or Kaikhosrú?

Let Zál and Rustum bluster as they will,
Or Hátim 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 Sultán is forgot— And peace to Máhmúd 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 turned
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-was gone.

Think, in this battered caravanserai
Whose Portals are alternate Night and Day,

How Sultán after Sultán 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 Bahrám, that great Hunter-the Wild Ass
Stamps o'er his Head, but cannot break his Sleep.

I sometimes think that never blows so red
The Rose as where some buried Cæsar bled;

That every Hyacinth the Garden wears Dropped in her Lap from some once lovely Head.

And this reviving Herb whose tender Green
Fledges the River-Lip on which we lean-

Ah, lean upon it lightly! for who knows
From what once lovely Lip it springs unseen!

Ah, my Beloved, fill the Cup that clears
TO-DAY of past Regret and future Fears:

TO-MORROW!-Why, To-morrow I may be
Myself with Yesterday's Seven thousand Years.

For some we loved, the loveliest and the best That from his Vintage rolling Time hath pressed, Have drunk their Cup a Round or two before, And one by one crept silently to rest.

And we that now make merry in the Room
They left, and Summer dresses in new bloom,

Ourselves must we beneath the Couch of Earth Descend ourselves to make a Couch-for whom?

Ah, make the most of what we yet may spend,
Before we too into the Dust descend;

Dust into Dust, and under Dust, to lie,

Sans Wine, sans Song, sans Singer, and-sans End!

Alike for those who for TO-DAY prepare,
And those that after some TO-MORROW stare,

A Muezzin from the Tower of Darkness cries, "Fools! your Reward is neither Here nor There!"

Why, all the Saints and Sages who discussed
Of the two Worlds so wisely-they are thrust

Like foolish Prophets forth; their Words to Scorn
Are scattered, and their Mouths are stopped with Dust.

Myself when young did eagerly frequent
Doctor and Saint, and heard great argument
About it and about: but evermore

Came out by the same door where in I went.

With them the seed of Wisdom did I sow,
And with mine own hand wrought to make it grow;

And this was all the Harvest that I reaped"I came like Water, and like Wind I go."

Into this Universe, and Why not Knowing
Nor Whence, like Water willy-nilly flowing;

And out of it, as Wind along the Waste,
I know not Whither, willy-nilly blowing.

What, without asking, hither hurried Whence?
And, without asking, Whither hurried hence!
Oh, many a Cup of this forbidden Wine
Must drown the memory of that insolence!

Up from Earth's Center through the Seventh Gate
I rose, and on the Throne of Saturn sate,

And many a Knot unraveled by the Road;
But not the Master-knot of Human Fate.

There was the Door to which I found no Key;
There was the Veil through which I might not see;
Some little talk awhile of ME and THEE

There was and then no more of THEE and ME.

Earth could not answer; nor the Seas that mourn
In flowing Purple, of their Lord forlorn;

Nor rolling Heaven, with all his Signs revealed And hidden by the sleeve of Night and Morn.

Then of the THEE IN ME who works behind
The Veil, I lifted up my hands to find

A Lamp amid the Darkness; and I heard,

Then to the Lip of this poor earthen Urn
I leaned, the Secret of my Life to learn:

And Lip to Lip it murmured—“While you live, Drink!-for, once dead, you never shall return."

I think the Vessel, that with fugitive
Articulation answered, once did live,

And drink; and ah! the passive Lip I kissed,
How many Kisses might it take—and give!

For I remember stopping by the way

To watch a Potter thumping his wet Clay:
And with its all-obliterated Tongue
It murmured-"Gently, Brother, gently, pray!"

And has not such a Story from of Old
Down Man's successive generations rolled
Of such a cloud of saturated Earth
Cast by the Maker into Human mold?

And not a drop that from our Cups we throw
For Earth to drink of, but may steal below

To quench the fire of Anguish in some Eye There hidden-far beneath, and long ago.

As then the Tulip for her morning sup
Of Heavenly Vintage from the soil looks up,
Do you devoutly do the like, till Heaven
To Earth invert you-like an empty Cup.

Perplexed no more with Human or Divine,
To-morrow's tangle to the winds resign,

And lose your fingers in the tresses of
The Cypress-slender Minister of Wine.

And if the Wine you drink, the Lip you press,
End in what All begins and ends in-Yes;

Think then you are TO-DAY what YESTERDAY You were-To-MORROW you shall not be less.

So when the Angel of the darker Drink
At last shall find you by the river-brink,

And, offering his Cup, invite your Soul
Forth to your Lips to quaff-you shall not shrink.

Why, if the Soul can fling the Dust aside,
And naked on the Air of Heaven ride,

Wer't not a Shame-wer't not a Shame for him In this clay carcase crippled to abide?

'Tis but a Tent where takes his one-day's rest A Sultán to the realm of Death addressed;

The Sultán rises, and the dark Ferrásh Strikes, and prepares it for another Guest.

And fear not lest Existence closing your
Account, and mine, should know the like no more
The Eternal Sákí from that Bowl has poured
Millions of Bubbles like us, and will pour.

When You and I behind the Veil are passed,
Oh, but the long, long while the World shall last,

Which of our Coming and Departure heeds
As the Sea's self should heed a pebble-cast.

A Moment's Halt-a momentary taste
Of BEING from the Well amid the Waste-

And Lo!-the phantom Caravan has reached The NOTHING it set out from-Oh, make haste!

« VorigeDoorgaan »