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Rosen, F. [1928]

The quatrains of 'Omar-i Khayyám. Persian text taken from two newly discovered manuscripts with an English prose version by Friedrich Rosen. London, Luzac, 1928

As far as possible taunt not the drinkers;
Build not upon the foundation of hypocrisy and idle tales.
Pride not yourself in your not drinking wine;
You do a hundred things that are as low as a slave next to that.

As no promise of a morn is ever given us,
Gladden for a moment this melancholy heart.
Drink wine, my Moon, in the light of the moon, for the moon
Will shine, time without end, and find us no more.

With what hope can the sage in this old abode
Place confidence in its prosperity, tell me for the sake of God.
Wherever he desires to rest for a while,
The death-hour will snatch him by the hand and shout "Arise!"

The Koran they call the best of texts,
Yet oft-times they do not read it with application.
Around the goblet is engraved a verse
Which everywhere is read incessantly.

When I pass away wash me with wine,
A dirge about pure wine chant for me.
If on the day of resurrection you wish to find me,
Seek me in the dust of the threshold of the tavern.

However beautiful my colour and my shape,
Like a tulip my face and like a cypress my form,
I have not understood for what purpose the Painter of the Beginning
Has adorned me thus for this pleasure-house of dust.

So much will I drink that the perfume of wine
Will arise from the dust beneath which I lie,
That some thirsty one, passing over my dust,
Shall become senseless by the odour of this earth.

I with wine and the beloved in this ruined abode,
Life, heart, goblet and garment pawned for wine,
Relieved from hope of grace and from fear of punishment,
Free from earth and air, from fire and water.

The cloud came and again wept on the verdure, saying:
"Without rose-coloured wine you must not live."
To-day this verdure is admired by us,
When it grows out of our dust it will be admired - by whom?

The parts which have united to form a goblet
Even the intoxicated refrain to break up again.
So many heads and tender hands;
By whose bounty were they united and through whose wrath were they
broken up?

The secrets of the World as they are in my manuscript
I cannot tell, for that would be staking my head.
As there is not among these learned men a worthy one,
I cannot say everything that is in my mind.

Better make few friends in these times;
Keep the people of this world at a distance.
That person in whom you have placed full confidence,
Should you open the eye of reason, will prove your enemy.

In yonder castle where Bahrám once held the goblet
The gazelle now bears its young and the fox (the lion) has found his
Bahrám, thou who all thy life-time didst catch the gúr (wild ass),
See now how the gúr (grave) has caught Bahrám.

To-day you have no hold on to-morrow,
And the thought of to-morrow is naught but sadness.
Waste not this breath if your heart be not mad,
For you know not the price of the rest of your life.

Oh thou, who hast come straight from the spiritual world,
And hast been bewildered by the Four (elements), the Five (senses), the
Six (directions) and the Seven (spheres),
Drink wine, for thou knowest not whence thou comest,
Be merry, for thou knowest not whither thou shall go.

Oh ye ignorant, this corporate form is nothing,
And this chequered dome of nine spheres is nothing;
Be merry, for this abode of Hfe and strife is nothing;
We depend on one breath, and this breath is nothing.

When God mixed the clay of our existence
He knew what would be the outcome of our actions.
None of my sins is committed without His order.
Why, then, the burning on the Day of Resurrection?

Oh Wheel of the Spheres, destruction comes of thy spite.
Injustice has ever since been thy profession.
And thou, oh Earth, if they were to cleave thy bosom,
Many a precious jewel would they find within.

Oh Heart, since it is thy fate to bleed away,
And as thy state must change with each moment,
Oh Life, why hast thou come into this body
If, in the end, thou must depart again?

This jar, like myself, has been deeply in love,
It has been fettered by the tresses of a beauty.
And this handle which you see on its neck
Is a hand that has been on the neck of a beloved.

This old caravanserai which they call the world
Is the stable of the piebald steed of morning and evening.
It is a feast left over by a hundred Jamshíds,
It is a castle which is the resting-place of a hundred Bahráms.

Oh woe to the heart in which there is no burning,
Which is not maddened by a passion that kindles the heart.
No day is more wasted and lost for you
Than the day which has passed without love.

Sit with wine, for the kingdom of Mahmúd is but this;
Listen to the harp, for the song of David is but this.
Think no more of what has not yet come and of what has passed;
Be merry, for the object of existence is but this.

Higher than the Spheres had my mind on the first day
Sought the Tablet and the pen and Paradise and Hell.
Then my master said with true judgment:
"Tablet and pen and Paradise and Hell are within thyself".

To the face of the rose the New Year's breeze is pleasant,
On the background of the meadow a beautiful face is pleasant;
Of bygone yesterday nothing you may say is pleasant;
Be merry, speak not of yesterday; to-day is pleasant.

He who holds in his palm ruby wine and in his hand the tresses of the
Let him rest happy on the edge of the meadow.
Let him drink without concern about the revolving spheres,
And let him become intoxicated with the wine of enjoyment.

Much did I roam through gates and deserts,
And through my roaming no profit has come.
If, through the sickness of this world, my life sometimes did not pass
Yet at times it has passed pleasantly, pleasantly.

Before you and me there have been nights and days,
And the revolving sphere has also been active,
Beware, tread gently on the dust,
For it may have been the pupil of the eye of a beloved.

How much longer shall I build unbaked bricks on the oceans?
I have become wearied with the idol-worshippers and the Church.
Who has said that Khayyám will be an inmate of Hell?
Who has gone to Hell and who has returned from Paradise?

How much longer the lamp of the Mosque and the smoke of the Church?
How much longer fear of Hell and hope of Paradise?
Go, look upon the Tablet, for the Master Penman on the day of
Beginningless Eternity
Has inscribed thereon all that is to be.

As long as I am sober enjoyment is hidden from me,
And when I am intoxicated there is imperfection in my reason.
There is a state midway between intoxication and sobriety;
I am a slave of that state, for that is life.

So much concern for wealth, and so much regret of this world -
Have you ever seen anyone who lived eternally?
As these one or two breaths are a loan to your body,
You must live by this loan as one lives on a loan.

As the Wheel revolves not according to the wish of anywise man,
You may count the spheres seven or, if you like, eight.
As you must die and abandon all desires,
What if you are devoured by ants in the grave, what if by wolves in the

As events will not pass according to our desire,
Whereto can our worries and our efforts lead?
We are constantly held down by the feeling of regret
That late we came and that too soon we must depart.

As our hands hold neither reality nor certainty,
We cannot sit through life in the hope of what is doubtful.
Let us therefore keep the goblet in our hands;
In its unconsciousness what is sobriety, what intoxication?

As there is not of all that is aught but wind in your hands,
As there is in all that is loss and ruin,
Assume that all that is in the world is not,
Imagine that all that is not in the world is.

The dust that is now under the foot of every animal
Has once been the hand of an adored one and the face of a beloved.
Every brick that forms the battlement of a castle
Has been the finger of a Vizier or the head of a Sultan.

Khayyám! why this complaint about your sins?
What matter if your distress be more or less?
For him who has not sinned there will be no forgiveness,
Forgiveness has been granted for sins, then why this distress?

Khayyam (the tentmaker), who used to sew tents of philosophy,
Has fallen into the furnace of distress and suddenly been burned.
The scissors of the death-hour have cut the rope of his life,
Broker fate has sold him for nothing.

When the Lord of all things prepared the mixture of His creatures,
Why did He thrust them into defect and waning?
If these forms are good, why must they be broken?
And if not good, who is to blame?

(Untranslatable play on words.)

No one has access to the veil of mystery;
Of this system of life no one has any knowledge.
Except in the heart of the earth there is no resting-place.
Listen, for these tales are not short.

I fell asleep, and a wise man said to me:
"Sleep has brought to no one the rose of bliss.
Why do a thing which is the twin of death?
Drink wine, for many a life-time you must slumber".

Pour out wine, my idol, for the earth is quickened,
Pour out that wine which waters the rose of mirth.
Hasten, for the fire of youth is water,
Use the moment, for the favour of fortune is a dream.

In hermitages, in schools, in monasteries and in synagogues
There are those who fear Hell and those who seek for Paradise.
But he who has knowledge of God's secrets
Will sow no such seed in his innermost heart.

I feel no shame in the blame of my love for thee,
With the unconscious there is no dispute about this.
This love-potion all men have drunk,
They who have no colour from this goblet are not men.

If in the Spring a lovely one fair as a houri
Hands me a goblet on the edge of a sown field,
However much this may scandalize the people,
I should be worse than a dog if in such a moment I should remember

Wherever in the desert a bed of tulips has sprung,
Those tulips have been an Emperor's blood.
Wherever a violet grows out of the earth,
It is a beauty-spot which once has been on the face of a beloved.

If the heart knew the mystery of life as it really is,
I t would also in death know the mysteries of Allah.
To-day, when you are yourself, you know nothing;
To-morrow, when you leave your own self, what will you know?

Of this circle within which is our coming and our going
There is neither beginning nor end to be seen.
No man breathes a true word about this mystery,
Whence this coming and whither this going.

Of this wine which gives our existence new life
Fill a goblet, although it distress you.
Place it in my hand for all this world is but a night's tale,
Hasten, for life, oh youth, is passing.

The worry about this world is poison, and wine its antidote.
Drinking the antidote you need not fear the poison.
With those on whose lips the down is fresh (green) sit down and drink
Before the green sprouts from your dust.

Before now there have been signs of what is to come,
The pen never rests from good or evil.
Destiny has given you all that is to be,
Our worries and our endeavours are in vain.

Your secret you must keep hidden from all men;
Secrets should be hidden from fools.
See how you deal with others, for the same
That you do to others you must expect from them.

Seek not for happiness, for the sum of life is a breath;
Each atom is a part of some Kaikubád or Jamshíd.
The state of the world and the remaining part of your existence
Is a dream, a fancy, a deception, a breath.

The field has been washed by the cloud of the New Year;
Arise and renew your friendship with the goblet filled with wine.
Drink upon the green with one whose down is yet green
To the memory of one from whose dust green has sprung.

The deepest depth of my reason is not capable of grasping Thee,
And my philosophy is naught but imploring Thy mercy.
How could I fully know Thine essence?
No one can know of Thine essence save Thine essence itself.

If you follow in the wake of lust and whim,
Let me warn you that you will proceed without profit.
Consider who you are and whence you came;
Know what you do and whither you are going.

The Firmament is a girdle of our worn-out life,
The Oxus is a vestige of our tear-drained eyes,
Hell is a spark of (the fire of) our useless regrets,
Paradise is a window (giving a glimpse) of our happy moments.

If roses have not fallen to our lot, may thorns suffice,
If light does not reach us, may fire suffice.
If the dervish's robe, the monastery and sheikhdom be not ours,
May bells and churches and the sacred cord suffice.

They say: drink no wine in the month of Shaabán, it is not permitted
(by the Prophet)
Nor yet in Rajab, for that is the special month of God.
If Shaabán and Rajab are the months of God and of the Prophet,
Let us drink in Ramazán, for that is our special month.

They tell me Paradise with its houris is delightful,
I say the juice of the grape is delightful.
Grasp this ready money and let that credit go,
For to hear the sound of the drum from afar is delightful.

They tell me those who drink are doomed to Hell;
This is a common saying, but I cannot believe it.
If all those in love and those who drink were to be in Hell,
To-morrow you would see Paradise as empty as my hand.

You say no fruit has grown on the Tree of Knowledge
Because no one is in the right path.
Every hand has grasped a fragile bough;
Know that to-day is as yesterday and to-morrow as the first day.

Wine is a pure ruby and the flask is the mine;
The goblet is the body and the wine its soul.
Yonder crystal flask that laughs with the wine
Is a tear in which a heart's blood is hidden.

I am a wayward slave, where is Thy approval?
My heart is dark, where is the light of Thy Grace?
I f Thou bestowest Paradise on us for our obedience.
That is but a bargain; where is Thy kindness and Thy bounty?

I have no knowledge whether He who mixed my clay
Formed me to be an inmate of Paradise or of hideous Hell.
A fair one and a little food and some wine on the edge of the sown
These three are cash for me - yours the credit of Paradise.

My drinking is not for the purpose of enjoyment,
Not for frivolity nor from indifference to religion and morality.
I want for a while to be free from myself,
That is the reason for my drinking and my intoxication.

Although wine in holy law has an ugly name, it is pleasant,
When it is in the hands of a young cup-bearer it is pleasant;
It is bitter and it is forbidden, yet to me it is pleasant;
At all times whatever is forbidden is pleasant.

The good and the bad in the nature of man,
The joy and the sorrow that lie in your fate,
Do not attribute them to the Wheel, for in the path of understanding
You will find the Wheel a thousand times more powerless than yourself.

However miserable and ugly I am through sin,
I am not without hope like the idol-worshippers of the temple.
But on the morn that I die from intoxication
I want wine and a beloved - let it be Hell, let it be Paradise.

Every heart which is composed of fondness and friendship,
Whether it belong to those of the prayer-carpet or to those of the
If once its name has been written in the book of love,
It is released from Hell and freed from Paradise.

Of every green plant that borders the stream,
You may say it has once been the bloom on the cheek of one beautiful as
an angel.
Let not your foot tread on these plants wantonly,
For they have sprung from what was once a face lovely as the moon.

Everyone upon whose heart has been inscribed the writing of reason
Will not let one moment of life be lost.
Either he will strive to acquire God's approval
Or he will choose his own pleasure and grasp the goblet.

Beware, for the world is full of spite,
Trust it not, for the blade of fate is sharp.
If Destiny should place a lozenge in your mouth,
Beware, swallow it not, for it is mixed with poison.

Oh Lord, Thou art forgiving and forgiving is mercy.
How is it that the disobedient should be kept outside the Garden of
If Thou showest me kindness when I am obedient, that is not mercy;
If Thou forgivest my disobedience, that is mercy.

The beloved one for whose sake my heart has become fevered
Has herself been caught by grief for another.
How can I strive to obtain my own recovery,
When my physician himself has fallen ill?

One sip of wine is better than the kingdom of Kavús,
Better than the throne of Kubád and the royal cushion of Tús.
Every sigh that comes from a profligate at dawn
Is better than the lamentations of hypocritical devotees.

As long as you are able, attach not weight to this world's griefs.
Burden not your heart with the thought of what has passed and what has
not yet come.
Drink wine merrily in this hostelry of two or three days sojourn,
You cannot carry away with you one grain of corn, however great your
treasures may be.

You to whose cheek the wild rose pays tribute,
To whose face Chinese idols must pay tribute,
Whose glances have forced the King of Babylon
To give you as tribute horses and towers and elephants, standards and
his Queen.

When life passes away, what if it be sweet or bitter?
When your measure is full, what matters it if you be in Baghdad or in
Drink wine, for after you and me this moon will many a time
Pass from first quarter to last and from last to first.

Those who have laid the foundation of their zeal on hypocrisy
Strive to draw a distinction between soul and body.
Hereafter I will place on the parting of my hair the goblet of wine,
Even if they place a comb like the cock's on my head.

Those who apply themselves to the use of reason,
Alas, they all milk oxen.
It would be better if they were to don the garb of fools,
For in our day not even garden greens are sold for reason.

There are those who have worn out the world under their feet,
And those who in search of it have measured the two worlds.
Yet I am not aware that they in any way
Have known the true essence of its nature.

Those who have become obsolete and those who are modern,
Each one of them has walked a pace according to his own desire.
This possession of the world does not remain eternally with one man;
They go, and we go, and new ones come and go again.

Those who have become oceans of learning and literature,
And in explaining subtleties shine like candles amongst their associates
Have, nevertheless, not shown a path out of this dark night,
They have told a tale and then fallen asleep.

Those worshippers of the prayer-carpet are but asses,
Because they are under the load of hypocrisy;
And this is the more strange that behind the veil of piety
They sell Islam and are worse than unbelievers.

That bowl-maker who made the bowls of our heads
Has shown his skill in the making of bowls.
He placed on the table-cloth of our existence an inverted bowl,
And that bowl he filled with melancholy (reflections).

He who built the Earth, the Wheel and the Spheres
Has set many a burn on our sorrow-stricken heart.
Many ruby lips and many musk-like tresses
Has he placed under the surface of the Earth and into the vessel of its

I am not the man who fears the hour of death,
For that half seems to me preferable to this half.
God has given me my life as a loan;
I shall return it when the hour comes for returning it .

The stars that are the inmates of this vault
Are a puzzle to the wise.
Beware, lose not the thread of your reason,
For those who are the most enlightened have become giddy.

(The text of this verse, which the other copies do not contain, seems to
be so corrupted that it makes no sense. Therefore it has not been

Of my state I shall give you full knowledge,
And I shall do so in two short words:
With Thy love I shall sink into the ground,
And through Thy kindness I shall rise again from the dust.

Alas that the substance of our life has passed from our grasp!
In the hands of the hour of death many a heart has bled.
No one has come from yonder world to bring us tidings
How the travellers from this world are faring.

This night I will look for a bowl holding a gallon,
I shall enrich myself with two "rotls" of wine.
I shall first give a threefold divorce to Reason and Religion,
And thereafter take the Daughter of the Vine for a wife.

This set of high-placed men who hold all offices
Consume their lives in worry and vexation,
And any one who is not, like them, a slave to ambition,
Strangely enough, they will not consider as a human being.

This caravan of life passes on with wonderful speed.
Prize the night that passes in rejoicings;
Sáki, why fret uselessly for the morning of resurrection?
Set the goblet before me, the night is passing!

This bowl that once was so beautifully fashioned
Has been broken, and its fragments thrown upon the highway.
Beware you tread not on it wantonly,
For this bowl has been made from the bowls of human heads.

These potters that set their hands upon the clay
Should attribute to it reason and understanding.
How long will they continue their blows and kicks on the clay?
Are they not aware that it is the dust of their fathers?

With those two or three fools who through their ignorance
Think that they are the wise ones of the world
Be an ass, because in consequence of their ass-like nature
They think everyone an unbeliever who is not like them an ass.

With a fair face, the brink of the brook, with wine and the rose,
As long as I can I will seek the joy and pleasure of life.
As long as I am and was and shall be
I drink, I drank and I shall drink wine.

The head and the leaves of old age are destined for destruction.
The granate-blossom of my face has a tinge of blue.
The roof, the door, the four pillars and the walls of our existence
Have become desolate and are going to ruin.

How long will you remain the captive of colour and perfume?
And how long will you pursue each fair and ugly one?
Even if you were the fountain of Zamzam or the Water of Life
In the end you must disappear into the heart of the dust.

Let my life be an offering to him who is worthy!
If you were to lay your head before his feet, it would be a small
Do you wish to know truly what Hell is like?
Hell in this world is intercourse with the unworthy.

Through the bounty of Beginningless Eternity I was created,
From the very first He taught me love.
And then out of the filings of my heart
He has made the key to the treasure-house of mystery.

Since whatever Justice has allotted to us for our maintenance
Will not be diminished nor increased by one atom,
We must be unconcerned about everything that is not,
And we must be independent of everything that is.

As there is no profit in this world from wisdom,
As none but fools enjoy the fruits of this world,
Set before me that which takes wisdom away,
Maybe fate will then look kindly on us.

The nature of roses and wine is known only to the worshippers of wine,
Not to those whose hearts and whose hands are narrow.
Those who are unconscious (of mystic love) cannot understand
There is a pleasure in this state known only to the intoxicated.

Happy the heart of him who has not become known,
Who has not clad himself in brocade, in satin or in the woollen garment
(of the dervish).
Like Simurgh he has lifted himself above the two worlds
And has not become an owl sitting in a corner of this ruin of a world.

The Sun has thrown the noose of dawn upon the roof,
The Emperor Day has poured wine into his goblet.
Drink , for the early-rising crier
Has thrown his chant "ishrabú!" (drink!) into the world.

Be merry, for there will be sorrow without end,
In the heavens there will be many a conjunction.
The brick which they will make from your frame
Will be a part of the hall of another's dwelling.

Be merry, for the new moon of the festival is coming,
And all the instruments of joy will be pleasant.
This (old) moon has become yellow, crooked, lean and weak
As if it was going into fasting.

For (idle) hopes I gave my life to the winds;
Not a day of my life-time has been a happy one.
I fear that life will not give me safety,
Only as much as I take from life, it will give me.

If in the burning fire there should be a worthy one,
Then the burning of the fire would be easy to bear.
Do not associate with the unworthy,
For of all things the worst is intercourse with the unworthy.

Although to thine eye the world appears adorned,
Value it not, for the wise value nothing.
Many like you have gone and many will come.
Take from it thy share, for thou wilt be taken from it.

You cannot plant the tree of hope in your heart,
You must incessantly read the book of joy.
You must drink wine and follow your heart's desire,
Can you know how long you will remain in this world?

On this Earth no one has ever conquered one whose cheeks are like the
Unless his heart has felt the thorns of time.
Behold the comb: it would never have reached the tresses of the Beloved,
Had it not been cleft by a hundred deep wounds.

Whoever on this earth possesses half a loaf
And a nest suited for his abode,
Whoever is no man's slave and no man's master,
Let him live content, for his existence is a blissful one.

Let beauties, like houris , be foremost in my mind;
May the juice of the grape be always in my hand.
They say to me: "May God give you repentance!"
As He Himself will not give it unto me, I will not repent, far be it
from me!

In life you must be cautious;
In the affairs of this world you must be silent.
As long as your eyes, your tongue and your ears are in their place,
You must be without eyes, without tongue and without ears.

Thy splendour has not been increased by my obedience,
And through the sins that I committed it has suffered no harm .
Forgive and take no revenge, for I have found
That Thou art slow to punish and quick to forgive.

The husbandman Fate has sown and has mown down many like ourselves.
To trouble one's mind without reason is useless.
Fill the cup with wine and place it in my hand speedily,
That I may quaff it, for all that is to come will come.

It is a pleasant day, and the air is neither hot nor cold.
The cloud washes the dust from the face of the rosegarden.
The nightingale seems to call out to the yellow rose:
"It is time for drinking wine" .

Before a night attack is made on your life,
Let them bring rose-coloured wine, my love.
You are not gold, my careless fool, that they
Should bury you under the earth so as to dig you up again.

From having brought me here Heaven will derive no benefit.
And from taking me away its glory and its splendour will not increase,
Nor have my two ears ever heard from any one
The object in bringing me and in taking me away again.

See that they feed me with the wine-cup,
That they make this amber-coloured face like a ruby.
When I pass away let them wash me with wine
And let them make my bier from the wood of the vine.

Not one night passes in which my reason is not bewildered,
In which my bed is not filled with pearls (tears).
The bowl of my head cannot be filled with wine because of my sadness,
No bowl can be filled when its head is turned downwards.

My nature is entirely bound to a face like a rose,
My hand is entirely bound to a goblet full of wine.
From every part I will take my share
Before the parts are united with the Whole.

Love that is (only) mystic has no lustre,
Like half-dead embers it gives no glow.
Lovers must be throughout year and month and night and day
Without rest and quiet, food and slumber.

How much longer will your life be spent in the worship of yourself.
Or in meditating on existence and non-existence?
Drink wine, for a life that has sorrow at its heels
Is best spent in sleep or in intoxication.

The festival has come and will make the world pleasant
Like the face of the bride.
The Cup-bearer will pour into the jar wine
Red like the eye of the cock.
The festival day will remove the halter of prayer and the muzzle of
Once again
From the heads of these asses.
Alas! alas!

To-morrow, when all that is within the Six Points will find its
Your rank will be according to your knowledge.
Strive for fine qualities, for before the tribunal of resurrection
Your resurrection will take the form of your qualities.

Diminish your greed of the world and live merrily,
And from the good and evil of the world loosen the fetlocks.
Let your hand grasp the goblet and the tresses of your beloved,
For time revolves and not so many days remain.

If you throw wine on the mountain, it will dance,
Incomplete is he who is without wine.
Why do you bid me forswear wine?
Wine is the spirit which educates man.

The sky does not bring forth a flower from the earth
Which it does not destroy and give back to the earth.
If the clouds were to Iift up the dust as they Iift the water,
Until Judgment Day they would rain nought but the blood of the Beloved.

When one breath of your life passes,
Let it not pass without enjoyment.
Beware, your entire capital in this world
Is your lifetime. As you Iet it pass, so it passes.

They say there is to be a Paradise with Houris,
There is to be wine, milk and honey.
If here we adore wine and beautiful maidens, that is permissible,
As hereafter it will be the same.

Those who refrain from wine, believe
That as they die so shall they rise.
We who are always with wine and a beloved
Perchance an the Day of Judgment may have the same fate.

They say the month of fasting has drawn near;
Henceforth I will be unable to seek the tavem.
On the last of Shaabán I shall drink so much wine,
That throughout Ramazán I shall lie intoxicated until the festival.

Your lip on the lip of the jug, do you know what that means!
The jug whispers: "My lips have once been as yours:
In the end when your existence is over,
Your lips will be such as mine by will of the All-Merciful".

I will drink wine, and whoever like me is a wise man
Will make light of my drinking.
My drinking was known to the All-Wise in the beginning;
If I were not to drink, God's knowledge would be ignorance.

Drink wine, for soon enough the jasmine will be as air,
Live joyfully, for soon enough the slender one will be as the star
On the edge of the meadow enjoy the fruits of life;
For soon enough the meadow, like us, will disappear.

Never having spent a night till dawn in study,
Never having made a step beyend themselves,
They, mean in themselves, having worn the dress of distinction,
Give a bad name to many of good name.

At the time when the azure morning rises
Let clear wine be in your hand.
There is a saying that Truth is bitter;
In that case wine must be Truth.

Each draught that the cup-bearer pours into the goblet
Will quench the fire of your burning eyes.
Praise be to God that you Iook upon wine
As a water that frees your heart of a hundred pains.

So long as my heart bad not been deprived of Iove (mystic knowledge)
There remained few secrets that I have not understood.
But now, when I Iook at it with the eyes of reason,
It is clear to me that nothing has become clear to me.

Every morn that the face of the tulip is adorned with dew,
The violet of the meadow bends its head.
In truth I am pleased only with those buds
That draw their skirts about them.

My friends, when you are feasting together
And delighting in each other's charms,
When the Sáki takes in his hands the wine of the Magians,
Remernher then your poor friend and bless his memory.

One flask of wine is worth a thousand unbelievers,
One sip of wine is worth the Empire of China.
What on the face of the earth can be preferable to wine?
It is a bitter thing that is worth a thousand sweet lives.

Why grieve, oh friend, about existence?
Free your heart and mind from useless speculation.
Live happily, pass through the world in mirth,
For you have not been consulted from the beginning.

Whilst time revolves, pick your fruit;
Sit upon the throne of joy and grasp the goblet.
God is above your obedience and your disobedience,
Try once at least to satisfy your own desire in this world.

The spheres do not bestow upon us anything but grief.
They bring us nothing that they do not take away again.
The unborn, if they knew what we are getting from the world,
Would not come into it at all.

If Him you seek, cut yourself off from wife and children.
Strive manfully, free yourself from relations and Connections.
Whatever exists, is a fetter on your path;
How can you walk with fetters? Cut the fetters off!

Oh heart, assume that your desire had attained all the treasure of this
Assume the garden of your joy adorned with verdure;
And then assume that on that verdure for one night, like dew,
You had alighted and at morn you had risen again!

My friend, do not worry uselessly about this world,
Do not worry needlessly about this worn-out world.
As all that has been is passed, and all that will be is not,
Be merry, do not worry about wbat bas been and what has not yet been.

The inhabitants of the graves have become earth and dust,
Everyone of their atoms has been separated from every other atom.
Oh what is that potion which makes them sleep
Senseless and ignorant of all that passes until the Day of Judgment?

In company of the beautiful there is nothing beyond undiluted wine,
And in ecstasy there is nothing beyond an eye full of tears.
As this base world does not keep faith with anyone,
There is nothing beyond unconscious intoxication.

How long this hypocrisy and falsehood of life?
How much Ionger will the cup-bearer of life pour out for me these dregs?
Verily, my repugnance of his draught
Makes me wish to pour this remnant of my life on the ground like a

As the result of man's life in this two-doored hostelry
Is naught but a bleeding heart and the giving up of life,
Happy he who has not become known,
Blessed he who was never bom of a mother.

The brick which closes the wine-jar is better than the kingdom of
The odour of the goblet is better than the (miraculous) food of Mariam.
A sigh rising at dawn from the breast of a drinker
Is better than the invocations of Bu Sa'íd and Adham

Yesterday I saw a potter in the market-place
Trampling down fresh clay with many a kick.
And this clay seemed to say to him:
"I was as you; deal gently with me ".

Drink of that wine which is the draught of etemity.
Drain the substance of the enjoyment of youth.
It bums like fire, but it assuages grief
Like the water of life, - drink!

Do not display piety and give God his due.
Do not withhold from anyone the morsel you may possess.
Do not slander or harm God's creatures,
As to yonder world - I guarantee - Bring wine!

If you drink wine, drink with wise men;
Or drink with a fair and smiling youth.
Do not drink much, prattle not and do not show it,
Drink little, drink from time to time and drink secretly.

'Tis the hour of dawn, arise, lovely lad.
Fill with ruby wine the crystal cup!
For this one borrowed breath in this comer of waning
You will seek long and not find it again.

Spill not the pure juice of the young bride of the vine;
Spill naught but the impure blood of him who forswears wine.
Pour on the ground the blood of two thousand obscure penitents,
But spill not one draught of wine upon the ground.

Amongst all those who have gone on this long journey
Where is one who has returned to give us news?
Beware! In this crossway of wishes and wants
Leave nothing behind, for you will never return.

This is not an allegory, it is reality:
We are the figures and the Sphere is the player.
We act a play on the boards of existence
And we go back into the box of non-existence one by one.

This Wheel which reveals its secrets to no one
Has cruelly slain a thousand Mahmúds and Ayázes.
Drink wine, for life is not given twice to anyone,
Whoever has left the world will not return.

Oh heart, as in truth the world is but a delusion,
Why grieve so much at this dearth of kindness?
Give thyself up to fate and befriend thy sorrow,
For this pen will not retrace its writing for thee.

A falcon was I, taking flight from the world of secrets,
Striving to find a way from the low to the sublime.
As I found no one there initiated in the mysteries,
I flew out of the door again by which I had entered.

If I secretly discourse with Thee in the tavern,
It is better than if I perform my worship before the niche of prayer
without Thee.
Oh Thou the beginning, and Thou the end of all creation! -
Burn me or cherish me as it best pleaseth Thee.

A law against which it is vain to strive
He gave to us, and bade us avoid.
Therefore, we stand helpless between bidding and forbidding.
It is as if He said: "Overturn the goblet, but spill not".

Go, throw dust on the Sphere of this world,
Drink wine and court those whose face is resplendent like the moon.
What place is this for worship and for prayer?
Since from all who have left no news returns.

Since we have taken to the ways of profligates,
We have said the burial prayer over the five devotions.
Wherever there is a cup you will see us
Stretching our necks toward it like a wine-flask.

If I have not strung pearls of piety,
If I have not swept the dust of sin from my face,
I am not without hope before the threshold of Thy mercy
Because I have never called the One two.

I placed my lip on the lip of the jug and caught from it
The means of attaining a long life.
The jug then seemed to say to me:
"For a lifetime I have been as you; now, for a while, be my companion".

My beloved - may her life be as long as my grief! -
Has to-day for a moment shown kindness to me.
For a moment she has looked upon me and has gone again,
True to the saying: do a good deed and cast it on the water.

You often asked me: What is this deceitful apparition?
If I were to tell you all the truth, it would be a long tale.
It is a mirage which has come forth from the ocean
Only to sink again into the depth of the ocean.

Dread not the events of pregnant time.
Fear not what may come, for it is not Iasting.
Spend on enjoyment this one present moment.
Regret not what is passed and fear not what is to come.

I saw a bird sitting on the battlements of Tús,
Holding before it the skull of Keikávús.
It said to the skull : "Woe to me, woe to me!
Where is the din of the bells and where the sound of drum?"

Let not what is to come cause you to tremble
And let not your good name be lost.
Take from this degraded world your profit
Before it Iifts its knife against you.

I will give you good advice if you will lend me your ears:
For God's sake wear not the garment of hypocrisy.
The whole world is but an hour and your life but a breath;
Do not sell your eternity for this one breath.

How lang shall I endanger through my ignorance
My heart that has been seized with despair?
I shall gird myself with the sacred cord of the Magians,
Ashamed of this Muhammedanism of mine.

There is a cup that reason admires,
Which receives a hundred kisses of affection upon its forehead.
And the potter, the World, makes such a lovely bowl
And then again breaks it upon the ground.

Khayyám, if you are intoxicated with wine, be glad,
If you are sitting with one beautiful like the moon, be happy.
As the end of all things is non-existence,
Assurne that you are not and be happy that you still exist.

To the potter's workshop I went yesterday,
There I saw two thousand pots, speaking and silent.
Suddenly one of the pots exclaimed:
"Where are the pots, where is the potter and where is he who sells

As I, myself intoxicated, passed the tavern yesterday,
I saw an old man drunken and carrying a wine jar on his shoulder.
I said: "Are you not ashamed before God, old man?"
He answered: "From God comes mercy; drink and be silent ".

Wine is always cherished by reason;
It is the fountain of Khizr and I am Elias;
I call it the strength of the heart, the food of my soul
For God has called it "Useful unto men".

Look on my virtues one by one and forgive my sins ten by ten,
Every past evil deed forgive for Allah's sake.
With the wind of annihilation inflame not the fire of the world,
Forgive us for the sake of the dust of Allah's Prophet.

The spirit which is purified from the admixture of dust
Has come to you as a guest from the world of purity.
Strengthen it with the morning draught of wine
Before it says to thee: "May God give you a good night".

Khayyám, time is ashamed of those
Who sit broken-hearted in sorrow of the world.
Drink wine from this crystal flask and listen to the plaint of the harp
Before the crystal flask of your life be shattered on a stone.

From the lowest depth of the earth to the height of Saturn
Have I solved all problems of the revolving spheres.
I have broken away from the fetters of every fraud and deception,
Every bond has been broken except that of death.

This semblance of existence is all fancy and imagination,
Whoever is ignorant of this is not numbered among the enlightened.
Sit and drink a goblet of wirre and be merry,
Freed from this fancy of impossible delusions.

If you are with a beloved whose face is fresher than a harvest of roses,
Let not the cup leave your hand nor the roses fall from your robe,
Before, unawares, the winds of Destiny
Tear to shreds the robe of your lifetime like the robe of the rase.

How long this talk of the sorrow and worry of this world?
Arise and spend in mirth the present moment.
Since from mile-stone to mile-stone the face of the earth has become
Sip ruby wine from the goblet filled to the brim.

No one has seen Paradise or Hell, my heart,
Nor has ever one returned from yonder world, my heart.
Our hope and our fear are centered on a thing
Of which no one has beheld so much as a name or a vestige, my heart.

On the day when drinking would seem unlawful to me
It would become poison, although the world were to give me an antidote.
This poison is the anxiety about the world, and its antidote wine.
I drink the antidote and will not fear the poison.

Thou hast mixed the water and the clay from which I was made - what can
I do?
And Thou hast spun my wool and my silk - what can I do?
All the good and bad that has appeared in me
Thou hast written on the Tablet of my Destiny - what can I do?

Wine takes the pride out of our head,
And wine loosens strong fetters.
If Satan were to drink one gobletful of wine,
He would make two thousand prostratians before Adam.

Looking up to the Creator of the world, the merciful Lord,
I am not without hope though I be guilty of grave disobedience.
Were I to lie down to-day intoxicated and depraved
To-morrow He would have mercy on my scattered bones.

Alas that we have been worn out uselessly,
And that we have been ground under the inverted bowl of Heaven.
Oh pain, and oh regret I that in the twinkling of an eye
We may cease to exist, not having reached our desire.

Oh Wheel of Fate, I am not pleased with your revolving.
Make me free - I have not deserved this bondage.
If you incline towards the unreasonable and the unworthy,
Consider - that I am not so worthy and so reasonable.

Oh friend, Iet us not worry about to-morrow,
Let us use well this one breath of life.
To-morrow, as we leave this abode of annihilation,
We will join the travellers who started seven thousand years ago.

As God did not desire whatever I desired,
How could my desires then be right?
If all that He wishes is right,
Then all that I wish is wrong.

Oh judge, we are more occupied than you;
In spite of our intoxication we are more clever than you.
You drink the blood of men, we the blood of the vine;
Do us justice - who is the more blood-thirsty, we or you?

This revolving sphere in which we stand bewildered
Is like unto a Chinese lantern,
The sun, its lamp and its shade the world,
We, the figures moving within it.

Because of Thy kindness I trouble not about my sins;
Because of Thy provisions I trouble not about the hardships of the road.
If Thy kindness makes my face white,
Truly, I trouble not about the black book (of my sins).

I am in constant conflict with my lusts - what can I do?
And I am pained by my deeds - what can I do?
Even if I admit that Thou in Thy mercy wilt pass over them,
With my shame that Thou hast seen all I have done ­ what can I do?

Arise and come, Iet us drink rose-coloured wine,
Let us drink it to the song of the tute and to the plaint of the harp.
Be mindful that the days of sweet fragrance pass away,
It is still a feast day, come Iet us drink rose-coloured wine.

Arise, and Iet our hand strike the harp,
Let us drink and throw away our reputation.
Let us sell the prayer-carpet for one cupful of wine
And strike this bottle of piety on a stone.

In the bed of the earth I see the sleepers,
I see those who are hidden under the earth.
Looking on the plain of non-existence
I see those who have not yet come and those who have departed.

I have not spent one moment, as long as I existed, without wine,
And even on the Holy Night I am intoxicated,
My lip on the lip of the goblet and my chest on the chest of the
Until daybreak my hand around the neck of the flask.

How long shall we remain the captives of every-day wisdom?
Whether we remain one day or a hundred years in this world,
Pour wine into the cup until we ourselves
Are turned into jugs in the workshop of the Potter.

Unless we clap our hands to the time of the music
Our feet will not dance and tread down the head of sorrow.
Let us arise and breathe before the breath of morn,
For many a dawn will break when we breathe no more.

Imagine not that I Iead my own existence
Nor that I have measured this blood-stained path guided by myself.
Since my essence and my reality are His,
Who am I, where am I, and when have I ever been?

I fear that I will not remain Ionger in this world,
And that I shall no Ionger be with my friends.
Let us consider this breath we are breathing as a gain,
Maybe we will not be alive even to draw the next breath.

My Iove, you and I are Iike a pair of compasses,
Although our head has become two, our body remains one.
We turn around one point as in a circle
Until in the end we join our heads again.

Since there is no Iasting abode in this hostelry,
To live without wine and a beloved would be a capital sin.
Oh man of sound wit, how long will you discuss the "old" and the "new"?
When I shall be gone, what matters it whether the world was created or

When I am thrown under the feet of the hour of death,
And when the hands of death will tear out my feathers Iike those of a
Beware, make nothing but a wine-jug from my clay,
Maybe, when they fill it with wine, I will come to Iife again.

For the sake of Thy Iove I will incur a hundred kinds of blame,
And if I break this promise I will atone for it.
If life remains true to me, maybe that your punishment
Will be somewhat less than what I have to endure until the day of

Although I came to the Mosque with a wish,
To say the truth, I came not to perform my devotions.
I had once stolen a prayer-carpet here;
That has now become old, therefore I have come again.

As I Iook upon the ways of the world
And see one by one each thing therein,
By God, in everything that I Iook upon
I behold the non-fulfilment of my wishes.

Where is he to whom I may for once entrust the secret
Of what man has been from his first existence?
A trouble-stricken being, mixed with the clay of sorrow
He has wandered a while on earth and then slunk away again.

How could I fly round another light?
How could I begin a new Iove?
My tears do not allow me for one moment
To open my eyes to gaze upon another.

If (they say) I am intoxicated with the wine of the Magians - I am.
And if I am called a love-maker, a profligate and a wineworshipper - I
Each sect has a notion of me, and yet
I am of my own sect, and such as I am, - I am.

If I have sinned on the face of the earth
I yet hope that Thy forgiveness will grasp me by the hand.
Thou hast said: "On the day of wretchedness, I will take thee by the
Wait not that I should be more wretched than I am to-day.

I said I would drink no more rose-coloured wine.
Wine is the blood of the vine, I will drink no more blood.
My old reason said: "Are you speaking wisely?"
I answered: "I am only jesting, how could I drink no more?"

The rose said: "In your garden I am Joseph of Egypt,
A precious ruby whose mouth is adorned with gold".
I asked: "If thou art Joseph, show me a token".
She said: "Behold my garment steeped in blood".

They say I am a worshipper of wine - I am.
They say I am a profligate - l am.
Look not too closely at my outward appearance,
For in my innermost heart I am - as I am.

We will sell the diadem of the Khán (of Tartary) and the crown of Kay
(the King of Persia),
We will sell the silken turban for the music of the reed,
Our rosary, which is the advance guard of the host of Hypocrisy,
We will sell forthwith for one cupful of wine.

We have thrown the garb of piety on the wine-jar,
And we have used the dust of the tavem for our ablutions.
Perhaps in the wine-house I may recover
A lifetime spent in schools of theology.

The object of the entire creation are we;
In the eye of reason the power of vision are we.
This circle of the Universe is like a ring;
Undoubtedly the engraving upon its stone are we.

I know all that is perceptible in the visible and in the invisible
I know all that is hidden in every height and depth,
But with all my knowledge I am helpless
To tell the state that lies beyond intoxication.

Let me always desire undiluted wine,
Let me always lend my ears to the flute and to the lute.
If the potters make a jug out of my clay,
Let that jug be always filled with wine.

Every day at dawn I go to the tavern
So as to be with the roaming mendicants listening to mystic sayings.
As Thou art the knower of all mysteries and of all that is hidden,
Help me, so that I may pray for my salvation.

Never can I drink a draught of water
Before I have quaffed wine from the hand of sorrow.
Nor do I dip my bread in anyone's salt
Before eating the roasted flesh of my burnt heart.

One hand on the sacred volume and one hand on the cup,
At times I practise what is permitted, at others what is forbidden.
Thus under this vault of turquoise-coloured marble
I am neither an entire Infidel nor a complete Moslem.

To him who has understood the secrets of this world
Its joys and its sorrows have become alike.
Since in this world good and evil must come to an end,
Let it all be suffering, let it all be remedy.

The secrets decreed in Beginningless Eternity neither you nor I shall
And yonder mysterious word neither you nor I shall read.
You and I speak of what lies hidden behind the curtain,
But when the curtain falls, neither you will be nor I.

You have spent day and night in contemplating the world,
Are you not troubled about the fateful day?
Look about for one moment and come to yourself,
See how the world deals with all the others.

Arise and worry not about this passing world,
Rest, and pass through life merrily.
If there were constancy in the nature of the world,
Luck would never come to you from others.

Have mercy on my breast that is full of sorrow,
Have mercy on my heart that is imprisoned,
Have mercy on my foot that seeks the tavern,
Have mercy on my hand that grasps the goblet.

Listen to me, best of my old friends,
Grieve not about this Sphere that has no plan or foundation.
Sit in a corner of the plain of safety
And behold the spectacle of this toy of a world.

Lives have all turned to water and hearts to blood,
Striving to find what truth lies hidden behind the curtain.
Oh Thou, before whose omniscience reason fails and heaven seems low,
The two worlds are full of Thee and Thou outside the two!

As all that man reaps from this desert covered with salt
Is naught but engulfing sorrow, and departing from life,
Happy is he who has left this world early,
Blessed he who never came into it.

On the bosom of this world ever new and yet old,
Sit so close to thy beloved that it would seem that two heads arose from
one garment.
Let not thy hand which seeks long and in vain for a beginning or an end
of this world
Be short of wine, for this is a long tale.

The day that has passed away recall not,
For the morrow that has not yet come worry not.
Rely not on what is gone nor on what is yet to come,
Be merry for a while and throw not your life to the winds.

Behold the evil deeds of this revolving dome,
And behold the world empty of all your friends.
For the time you are allowed to be yourself
Look not for to-morrow, yearn not for yesterday, see the present moment.

Some meditate much about sects and religions,
Others are lost in speculations on doubt or belief.
Suddenly the Herald's voice sounds from the unknown:
Ye fools, the path is neither this nor that.

If, like God, I had command over the Spheres
I should remove this Sphere from its place.
And then make a new Sphere of such a kind
That under it the noble-minded could more easily attain their desires.

They say to me: "Drink less wine,
After all, what excuse can free you from this guilt?"
"My excuse is the face of my beloved and the wine of the early morn,
Do me justice, what excuse could be more splendid than this?"

Wear not away your happy heart with cares,
Waste not your joyful time by rubbing it on the stone of worry.
Who in this world knows what is to be?
You will be at rest only with wine and a beloved, both to your heart's

I take no pride in becoming known by my good name,
It is mean to feel hurt by the cruelty of the Wheel.
To be known as a drunkard from the juice of the grape
Is better than to become famous as a zealot.

My poor pain-stricken maddened heart
Has not become sober from the passion for my beloved.
On the day when the wine of Iove was given me
My goblet (measure) was steeped in the blood of my heart.

Drinking wine and wooing fair ones
Is a better thing than the hypocrisy of fanatics.
If all who drink wine were to go to Hell
No one would then behold Paradise.

On to the threshold of yonder castle whose walls reached the Spheres,
Kings have once bowed their brows.
Sitting on its battlement I now see
A turtledove that keeps on calling "Koo? koo? koo? koo?" (where?

I am as I came into existence through Thy creativepower,
I have been fostered through Thy kindness and bounty.
For a hundred years I shall sin so as to learn
Which is greater, my guilt or Thy mercy.

In our coming and going what is the use?
And of the woof of our lifetime where is the warp?
In this world so many heads and feet of fair and delicate ones
Are being burnt to ashes-where is the smoke?

When your pure soul and mine shall leave our bodies
They will place one or two bricks on your grave and on mine.
And then, so as to make bricks for the graves of others
They will fill the brickmaker's form with your clay and with mine.

Oh you who have been cast into Fate's game of polo like a ball,
Go to the left, run to the right, say nothing.
For He who has thrown you into this turmoil,
He knows why, He knows, He knows, He alone.

This Wheel of the Spheres revolves for your annihilation and for mine,
It has evil intentions on your pure soul and on mine.
Rest on the meadow, my Iove, for not much time will pass.
Until grass springs from your dust and from mine.

Lift up the goblet and the wine-jar, my kind sweetheart,
Roam over the green fields and by the brink of the brook.
For this Sphere has made many a beauty fair as the moon
Into goblets and into jars a hundred times.

We are the buyers of wine old and new,
And we sell the world for two grains of barley.
You asked me where you would go after death;
Set wine before me and go where you like.

Tell me, who is there in the world who has committed no sin?
And tell me how has he lived who has committed no sin?
I do evil and Thou repayest me with evil;
Tell me, then, what the difference is between Thee and me?

It is better to be short of everything except wine.
Wine is even better than the tresses of the beauties of the King's
Drunkenness, revelry and losing the right path is better,
Even one draught of wine is better than all that lies between the Moon
and the Fish.

Count not on a life-time of more than sixty,
Wherever you take a step, do not take it unless intoxicated.
Before they mould your dust and your clay into jugs
Place the jug before you, and Iet not the cup leave your hand.

Oh you who know nothing of the ways of the world, you are nothing,
Your foundation is but wind, and therefore you are nothing.
The boundaries of your existence lie between two nothings,
On either side is nothing, and you in the middle are nothing.

This Sphere is like unto an inverted bowl
In which all the wise are prisoners.
Look at the friendship between the bottle and the goblet,
Who keep lip on lip and blood flows between.

Behold, the robe of the rose has been torn by the zephyr,
The nightingale is inspired by the beauty of the rose.
Rest in the shadow of the rose, for many of its leaves will the rose
Shed on the earth while we lie under the earth.

I saw an old man sleeping the sleep of intoxication,
The house of his body swept clean of the dust of consciousness,
Having taken wine, lying drunken and helpless
And praying; "God is kind".

How long shall I worry whether I have or have not,
And whether I shall spend this life in happiness or not?
Fill the goblet with wine, for no one knows
Whether we shall breathe out again this breath we draw in, or not.

Give not yourself up to sorrow about this unjust world,
Recall not the grief about what has passed.
Set your heart on naught but the tresses of a fairy,
Be not without wine, and give not your life to the wind.

My Iove, by what hand hast thou been created,
That thou hast outshone the Moon by thy splendour?
The beauties of the world adorn their faces for the festival,
Thou hast adomed the festival with thy face.

How long have you worn out your bodies striving for your sustenance?
With your head turning you run round the entire world in vain.
Many have gone, we are going, and others will come and will go
Without having spent one moment in the fulfilment of their heart's

Do you know for what reason and in which way
The eminence of the cypress and of the lily have become a byword?
The one has ten tongues - but they are dumb;
The other has two hundred arms - but they are too short.

Some day you will see me fallen intoxicated;
Prostrate, my head between your feet I shall fall.
My turban fallen from my head - the goblet out of my hand,
I have fallen into the chain of tresses that adorn an idol-worshipper.

Alas, that my Iife has been spent wantonly,
Every morsel I take is forbidden - my breath is poisoned.
Thou hast said my face is blackened by my omissions;
Alas for the deeds that were forbidden?


I will abstain from all, not from wine,
I will forego all, except wine.
Is it possible that I could turn a Moslem
And give up the wine of the Magians? surely no!

Thou hast set Thy mark on our existence,
A hundred marvels hast Thou brought forth in us.
And therefore I cannot be a more perfect thing
Than that which Thou Thyself hast poured into the mould.

One draught of old wine is better than a new kingdom,
And from all that is not wine, the path leading away from it is better.
One gobletful is a hundred times better than the kingdom of Feridún;
The brick that covers the jar is better than the crown of Kaikhusrou.

You are justified if you struggle to obtain
Such means as in this world are needed for food and clothing.
Beyond this everything is meaningless,
Beware, lest you sell your precious life for it.

I am such as Thou has created me from nothing,
I know that Thou hast done much good to me.
As I am powerless under the force of Thy decree,
I am pardoned as long as there is a particle of dust left of my clay.

Thou hast broken my wine-jar, oh Lord.
Thou hast shut the door of my joy, oh Lord.
I drink wine and it is as if Thou wert intoxicated.
Oh fill my mouth with earth, oh Lord, if I question Thy sobriety.

With the coming of Spring and with the passing of Winter
The leaves of our existence are turned to the end.
Drink wine, but drink no grief, for the wise have said:
"The sorrows of the world are as poison and the antidote is wine".

I sought an omen in the book of my life;
When suddenly one who understood said with a burning heart:
"Happy is he who holds in his arms
A sweetheart like a moon (month) and a night Iike a year''.

From the monastery came forth an impure man
Wearing a shirt woven from the smoke of Hell.
He broke my bottle - may his life be shortened!
He did that to such sweet wine and to such a man as I am.

I became one with wine and drunkenness.
Why do people blame me for that?
I wish all my wrongs were drunkenness,
So that I might never see sobriety in this world.

Oh Thou, whose abode reason cannot grasp,
Who needs neither our devotion nor our obedience;
I am intoxicated with sin and I am sober with hope,
That is: I have hope in Thy clemency.

Oh wine, thou art the drink of me, the disgraced one,
So much will I drink of thee, I, the mad one,
That whoever sees me from afar will say:
"Oh, master Wine, whence dost thou come?"

Sweet tasting wine, thou art best in the cup,
For the foot of reason thou art a fetter and a knot.
Whoever drinks of thee, thou dost not spare
Until thou hast laid bare the innermost essence of his heart.

Oh Wheel of Fate, thou always bringest affliction to my heart,
Thou tearest the garment of my happiness to shreds.
The wind that blows towards me thou convertest to fire,
The water I drink thou turnest to earth in my mouth.

Oh Wheel of the Spheres, thou givest something to every miser,
Thou givest him baths and mills and water-courses.
The noble-minded must pawn something to have his evening loaf,
One should show contempt for such a Sphere.

Oh my heart, you will not reach the secrets of the great mystery,
You will not reach the point which the cleverest among the wise have
Make then here your paradise with goblet and wine,
For that place where Paradise is, you may reach or not.

Oh World, thou admittest thine own evil deeds,
Always thou remainest seated in the corner of cruelty and oppression.
Thou givest grace to the unworthy and trouble to the worthy;
Thou must be one of two things, either a dullard or an ass.

Oh potter, take care, if you are a reasonable being,
How long will you treat the clay of men with contempt?
You may have brought Feridún's finger and Kai-khusrou's hand
Upon your wheel, what do you think of that?

Whatever thou sayest to us, thou sayest out of malice,
Ever thou callest me a heretic and an unbeliever.
I admit all thou sayest, however, do me justice,
Does it behove thee so to speak?

Yesterday I knocked my earthenware wine-jug against a stone.
I must have been inebriated to have committed such an offence.
It seemed as if the jug thus spoke to me:
"I have been as thou and thou wilt be as I".

The other day I passed a potter in the market
Displaying his skill upon the clay.
I see, even if those without perception do not see it,
My father's clay in every potter's hand.

I saw an old man in the wine-house,
I asked him: "Can you give me no news from those who have gone?"
He said: "Drink wine, for many a one like you
Has gone, and no news has ever come from him".

How much Ionger will you read the Koran-chapters "Yásín" and "Berát",
oh Sáki?
Write a berát (a cheque) on the wine-house forme, oh Sáki.
The day when they carry our berát to the wine-house
Will be better than the "Night of Berát", oh Sáki.

As long as you have bones and sinews and veins in your body,
Let not your foot step from the House of Destiny.
Bend not your neck, even should your enemy be Rustam Zál,
Accept no bounty, though your friend be Hátim Tai.

Surrender, since thou art beneath the remorseless Sphere,
Drink wine, since thou art in this world of misfortune.
As thy beginning and thine end are nothing but a handful of earth,
Imagine thou art not on the earth, but under the earth.

Since you are aware, my lad, of every secret,
Why do you worry so much in vain?
As nothing is determined by your decision,
Be happy that you are breathing yet awhile.

As time is in haste, oh Sáki,
Place in my hand the goblet of wine, oh Sáki.
At the time of the morning-drink take the lock from the door, oh Sáki,
Hasten, for the Sun has risen, oh Sáki.

If you wish to find the foundations of life firm,
And to find for your heart a day or two without grief,
Sit not idly without drinking wine,
And you will find the joy of life as quickly as one breath follows the

Be merry, for (the bricks of) your sorrows have been baked long since.
They have been placed beyond the reach of all your desires long since.
Live happily, for without your asking it
The fate of your to-morrow has been fixed, long since.

Even if you were hidden like fire within the flint-stone, oh Sáki,
The water of the hour of death must reach you, oh Sáki.
The world is dust, sing a song, oh minstrel,
Your breath is but wind, bring wine, oh Sáki!

I passed the potter's workshop,
I saw the Master standing on the tread of his wheel.
That bold fellow was making a handle and a lid for a jug
From the head of a king, and the foot of a beggar.

Go, choose unconsciousness (ecstasy) if thou art conscious (of the
mystical doctrine),
That thou mayest drink wine from the hands of those who have been
intoxicated from the day of beginningless eternity.
If thou art unconscious (of sufism), unconsciousness (ecstasy) will not
be thine.
Unconsciousness (mystic ecstasy) does not reach every unconscious
(unphilosophic) one.

From that wine-jug in which there is no harm
Fill a goblet, drink, and pass it on to me again,
Before the hour comes, when, by the roadside,
A potter will make jugs from your clay and from mine.

Beware! While it is still within your power
Shake from your minds the burden of those you love;
For this kingdom of beauty will not last eternally,
From your hand it will also disappear some day.

The Lord of all that encompasses the quick and the dead art Thou;
The holder of this wide rolling Wheel art Thou.
However bad I be, the Master of this slave art Thou,
What sin can be attributed to anyone, since the creator of all art Thou?

There is candle-!ight and wine and moonshine, oh Sáki,
There is wine like a pure ruby in the flask, oh Sáki;
Talk not of earth to this heart of fire,
Give not life to the wind, bring drink, oh Sáki!

Cupbearer, arise, it is a lovely and life-giving morning,
Pour into the bottle the wine left from the night,
Bring me a goblet and consider as a gain
This one breath that is ours - think not of to-morrow.

lf the world were to fall like a ball into the street,
To me, who lies intoxicated, it is not worth a grain of corn.
Yesterday they pawned me in a wineshop;
A drunkard said: "What a good pawn!"

If my coming into this world had depended upon me, I should not have
And had my leaving depended on me, how could I have left it?
It would have been better if into this world of strife
I had never come, nor lived in it, nor gone from it.

If the Cupbearer were to know my nature in all its fulness,
He would attribute to me a hundred good qualities of every kind.
If I should fall short, he would, after his habit, give me wine
And pass over my limitations.

If you have a loaf made from the marrow of wheat,
Of wine two gallons and of lamb a joint,
And if you are sitting in the wildemess with one whose face is beautiful
like the moon.
That would be bliss not attainable by a Sultan.

If thou hast two gallons of wine,
Drink at every festive union.
For He who made the world is not in need
Of a moustache like yours, nor of a beard like mine.

If you become famous in the town you will be hated by the people,
And if you sit quietly in a comer you will be considered a devotee.
It would be better, even if you were Khizr and Elijah,
That no one should know you, and that you should know no one.

If you have in this world a chance,
Take care not to draw one breath without wine and the cupbearer.
Before you and me many have found
That the world does not spare anyone its oppression.

They say: "Drink no wine, for it will bring you ill-Iuck;
On the Day of Judgment you will be in the fire".
This is true, but better than both worlds
Is that one moment when you are unconscious with wine.

We and wine, the beloved one and the moming drink, oh Sáki,
We will not repent Iike Nesúh, oh Sáki.
How much Ionger wilt thou recite the tale of Noah, oh Sáki?
Bring to me my soul's delight, oh Sáki.

Beware - do not offend the intoxicated,
Nor with discourtesy enter the door of the fair ones.
Drink, for whether you drink wine or not,
If you are intended for Hell, you will not become an inmate of Paradise.

Do you know why in the early hour of dawn
The cock cries in such lamenting tones?
It means that in the mirror of the morning it is revealed
That from life another night has passed and you are unaware of it.

'Tis time for the morning draught, my idol, whose step brings happiness.
Begin a song and bring the wine.
For a hundred thousand Jamshíds and Kaikhusrous
Have, by this coming of June and the passing of December, been
prostrated into the dust.

Oh Lord, open to me a door for my sustenance;
That I may know no obligation to the people, give me whatever there is
at hand,
Or keep me so intoxicated with wine
That unconsciousness hinders me feeling the ache of my head,