Hafez and ‘Imru’l Qays



My tears are after you, do not despise them.
For how many deep seas form from shallow springs!



دموعي بعدكم لاتحقروها
فكم بحر عميق من سواقي






سلام الله ما کر اللیالی



As long as the nights follow one another
And the two-stringed lutes answer the three


God save the Valley of Arak and whoever is there
And the house in Lawa, beyond Ramal


I pray for all those who are away from their homelands
repeatedly and constantly


I am dying of longing, O
would that I knew when the messenger would speak of union


O God, protect him with your eternal grace
at every place that he may be


O heart, weep not!  For in the chain of his curl,
distress is all tranquility


Your love is my comfort at every moment
Your name, my companion in every state


From your down, your beauty increased a hundredfold
May you live a hundred glorious years!


May the center of my heart, until the Day of Resurrection,
Empty of your love and longing, never be


Well done to that mighty painter
who draws a crescent line around the moon


How can I reach union with a King like you,
while I’m a careless and notorious gangster?


The one thing necessary is that thou art, If not,
Losing rank and wealth is easy


God knows what Hafez desires
And God’s knowledge of my desire is enough for me.



        سلام الله ما کر اللیالی
و جاوبت المثانی و المثالی
        علی وادی الاراک و من علیها
و دار باللوی فوق الرمال
           دعاگوی غریبان جهانم
و ادعو بالتواتر و التوالی
          به هر منزل که رو آرد خدا را
نگه دارش به لطف لایزالی
          منال ای دل که در زنجیر زلفش
همه جمعیت است آشفته حالی
          ز خطت صد جمال دیگر افزود
که عمرت باد صد سال جلالی
         تو می‌باید که باشی ور نه سهل است
زیان مایه جاهی و مالی
                أموت صبابة يا ليت شعرى
متى نطق البشير عن الوصال
             بر آن نقاش قدرت آفرین باد
که گرد مه کشد خط هلالی
              فحبک راحتی فی کل حین
و ذکرک مونسی فی کل حال
                سویدای دل من تا قیامت
مباد از شوق و سودای تو خالی
            کجا یابم وصال چون تو شاهی
من بدنام رند لاابالی
             خدا داند که حافظ را غرض چیست
و علم الله حسبی من سؤالی



‘Imru’l Qays




Stop, oh my friends, let us pause to weep over the remembrance of my beloved.
Here was her abode in Lawa between Dakhool and Howmal.

The traces of her encampment are not wholly obliterated even now.
For when the South wind blows the sand over them, the North wind sweeps it away.

The courtyards and enclosures of the old home have become desolate;
The dung of the wild deer lies there thick as the seeds of pepper.

On the morning of our separation it was as if I stood in the gardens of our tribe,
Amid the acacia-shrubs where my eyes were blinded with tears by the smart from the bursting pods of colocynth.

As I lament thus in the place made desolate, my friends stop their camels;
They cry to me ‘Do not die of grief; bear this sorrow patiently.’

Nay, the cure of my sorrow must come from gushing tears.
Yet, is there any hope that this desolation can bring me solace?

So before ever I met Unaizah, did I mourn for two others;
My fate had been the same with Ummul-Huwairith and her neighbor Ummul-Rahab in Masal.

Fair were they also, diffusing the odor of musk as they moved,
Like the soft zephyr bringing with it the scent of the clove.

Thus the tears flowed down on my breast, remembering days of love;
The tears wetted even my sword-belt, so tender was my love.

Behold how many pleasant days have I spent with fair women;
Especially do I remember the day at the pool of Darat-i-Juljul.

On that day I killed my riding camel for food for the maidens:
How merry was their dividing my camel’s trappings to be carried on their camels.

It is a wonder, a riddle, that the camel being saddled was yet unsaddled!
A wonder also was the slaughterer, so heedless of self in his costly gift!

Then the maidens commenced throwing the camel’s flesh into the kettle;
The fat was woven with the lean like loose fringes of white twisted silk.

On that day I entered the howdah, the camel’s howdah of Unaizah!
And she protested, saying, ‘Woe to you, you will force me to travel on foot.’

She repulsed me, while the howdah was swaying with us;
She said, ‘You are galling my camel, Oh Imru-ul-Quais, so dismount.’

Then I said, ‘Drive him on! Let his reins go loose, while you turn to me.
Think not of the camel and our weight on him. Let us be happy.

‘Many a beautiful woman like you, Oh Unaizah, have I visited at night;
I have won her thought to me, even from her children have I won her.’

There was another day when I walked with her behind the sandhills,
But she put aside my entreaties and swore an oath of virginity.

Oh, Unaizah, gently, put aside some of this coquetry.
If you have, indeed, made up your mind to cut off friendship with me, then do it kindly or gently.

Has anything deceived you about me, that your love is killing me,
And that verily as often as you order my heart, it will do what you order?

And if any one of my habits has caused you annoyance,
Then put away my heart from your heart, and it will be put away.

And your two eyes do not flow with tears, except to strike me with arrows in my broken heart.
Many a fair one, whose tent can not be sought by others, have I enjoyed playing with.

I passed by the sentries on watch near her, and a people desirous of killing me;
If they could conceal my murder, being unable to assail me openly.

I passed by these people at a time, when the Pleiades appeared in the heavens,
As the appearance of the gems in the spaces in the ornamented girdle, set with pearls and gems.

Then she said to me, ‘I swear by God, you have no excuse for your wild life;
I can not expect that your erring habits will ever be removed from your nature.’

I went out with her; she walking, and drawing behind us, over our footmarks,
The skirts of an embroidered woolen garment, to erase the footprints.

Then when we had crossed the enclosure of the tribe,
The middle of the open plain, with its sandy undulations and sandhills, we sought.

I drew the tow side-locks of her head toward me; and she leant toward me;
She was slender of waist, and full in the ankle.

Thin-waisted, white-skinned, slender of body,
Her breast shining polished like a mirror.

In complexion she is like the first egg of the ostrich-white, mixed with yellow.
Pure water, unsullied by the descent of many people in it, has nourished her.

She turns away, and shows her smooth cheek, forbidding with a glancing eye,
Like that of a wild animal, with young, in the desert of Wajrah.

And she shows a neck like the neck of a white deer;
It is neither disproportionate when she raises it, nor unornamented.

And a perfect head of hair which, when loosened, adorns her back
Black, very dark-colored, thick like a date-cluster on a heavily-laden date-tree.

Her curls creep upward to the top of her head;
And the plaits are lost in the twisted hair, and the hair falling loose.

And she meets me with a slender waist, thin as the twisted leathern nose-rein of a camel.
Her form is like the stem of a palm-tree bending over from the weight of its fruit.

In the morning, when she wakes, the particles of musk are lying over her bed.
She sleeps much in the morning; she does not need to gird her waist with a working dress.

She gives with thin fingers, not thick, as if they were the worms of the desert of Zabi,
In the evening she brightens the darkness, as if she were the light-tower of a monk.

Toward one like her, the wise man gazes incessantly, lovingly
She is well proportioned in height between the wearer of a long dress and of a short frock.

The follies of men cease with youth, but my heart does not cease to love you.
Many bitter counselors have warned me of the disaster of your love, but I turned away from them.

Many a night has let down its curtains around me amid deep grief,
It has whelmed me as a wave of the sea to try me with sorrow.

Then I said to the night, as slowly her huge bulk passed over me,
As her breast, her loins, her buttocks weighed on me and then passed afar,

‘Oh long night, dawn will come, but will be no brighter without my love.
You are a wonder, with stars held up as by ropes of hemp to a solid rock.’

At other times, I have filled a leather water-bag of my people and entered the desert,
And trod its empty wastes while the wolf howled like a gambler whose family starves.

I said to the wolf, ‘You gather as little wealth, as little prosperity as I.
What either of us gains he gives away. So do we remain thin.’

Early in the morning, while the birds were still nesting, I mounted my steed.
Well-bred was he, long-bodied, outstripping the wild beasts in speed,

Swift to attack, to flee, to turn, yet firm as a rock swept down by the torrent,
Bay-colored, and so smooth the saddle slips from him, as the rain from a smooth stone,

Thin but full of life, fire boils within him like the snorting of a boiling kettle;
He continues at full gallop when other horses are dragging their feet in the dust for weariness.

A boy would be blown from his back, and even the strong rider loses his garments.
Fast is my steed as a top when a child has spun it well.

He has the flanks of a buck, the legs of an ostrich, and the gallop of a wolf.
From behind, his thick tail hides the space between his thighs, and almost sweeps the ground.

When he stands before the house, his back looks like the huge grinding-stone there.
The blood of many leaders of herds is in him, thick as the juice of henna in combed white hair.

As I rode him we saw a flock of wild sheep, the ewes like maidens in long-trailing robes;
They turned for flight, but already he had passed the leaders before they could scatter.

He outran a bull and a cow and killed them both, and they were made ready for cooking;
Yet he did not even sweat so as to need washing.

We returned at evening, and the eye could scarcely realize his beauty
For, when gazing at one part, the eye was drawn away by the perfection of another part.

He stood all night with his saddle and bridle on him,
He stood all night while I gazed at him admiring, and did not rest in his stable.

But come, my friends, as we stand here mourning, do you see the lightning?
See its glittering, like the flash of two moving hands, amid the thick gathering clouds.

Its glory shines like the lamps of a monk when he has dipped their wicks thick in oil.
I sat down with my companions and watched the lightning and the coming storm.

So wide-spread was the rain that its right end seemed over Quatan,
Yet we could see its left end pouring down on Satar, and beyond that over Yazbul.

So mighty was the storm that it hurled upon their faces the huge kanahbul trees,
The spray of it drove the wild goats down from the hills of Quanan.

In the gardens of Taimaa not a date-tree was left standing,
Nor a building, except those strengthened with heavy stones.

The mountain, at the first downpour of the rain, looked like a giant of our people draped in a striped cloak.
The peak of Mujaimir in the flood and rush of débris looked like a whirling spindle.

The clouds poured forth their gift on the desert of Ghabeet, till it blossomed
As though a Yemani merchant were spreading out all the rich clothes from his trunks,

As though the little birds of the valley of Jiwaa awakened in the morning
And burst forth in song after a morning draught of old, pure, spiced wine.

As though all the wild beasts had been covered with sand and mud, like the onion’s root-bulbs.
They were drowned and lost in the depths of the desert at evening.





قفا  نبك  من  ذكرى   حبيب   ومنزل   ***   بسقط  اللوى  بين  الدخول  وحومل            

فتوضح  فالمقراة  لم  يعف   رسمها   ***   لما   نسجتها   من   جنوب   وشمأل
ترى    بعر    الأرآم    في    عرصاتها   ***   وقيعانها       كأنه       حب       فلفل
كأني   غداة    البين    يوم    تحملوا   ***   لدى  سمرات  الحي   ناقف   حنظل
وقوفا   بها   صحبي   علي   مطيهم   ***   يقولون   لا   تهلك    أسى    وتجمل
وإن   شفائي   عبرة   إن    سفحتها   ***   وهل  عند  رسم  دارس  من   معول
كدينك    من    أم    الحويرث    قبلها   ***   وجارتها      أم      الرباب       بمأسل
ففاضت  دموع  العين   مني   صبابة   ***   على النحر حتى بل دمعي  محملي
ألا   رب    يوم    لك    منهن    صالح   ***   ولا    سيما     يوم     بدارة     جلجل
ويوم    عقرت     للعذارى     مطيتي   ***   فيا   عجبا    من    رحلها    المتحمل
يظل    العذارى     يرتمين     بلحمها   ***   وشحم   كهداب   الدمقس    المفتل
ويوم   دخلت    الخدر    خدر    عنيزة   ***   فقالت   لك   الويلات   إنك    مرجلي
تقول   وقد   مال   الغبيط    بنا    معا   ***   عقرت بعيري  يا  امرأ  القيس  فانزل
فقلت  لها   سيري   وأرخي   زمامه   ***   ولا   تبعديني   من    جناك    المعلل
فمثلك  حبلى  قد   طرقت   ومرضعا   ***   فألهيتها   عن    ذي    تمائم    مغيل
إذا ما  بكى  من  خلفها  انحرفت  له   ***   بشق    وشق    عندنا    لم    يحول
ويوما   على   ظهر   الكثيب   تعذرت   ***   علي    وآلت     حلفة     لم     تحلل
أفاطم   مهلا    بعض    هذا    التدلل   ***   وإن كنت قد أزمعت صرمي فأجملي
وإن  كنت  قد  ساءتك  مني   خليقة   ***   فسلي   ثيابي   من   ثيابك    تنسل
أغرك    مني    أن     حبك     قاتلي   ***   وأنك   مهما   تأمري    القلب    يفعل
وما   ذرفت    عيناك    إلا    لتقدحي   ***   بسهميك  في  أعشار   قلب   مقتل
وبيضة    خدر     لا     يرام     خباؤها   ***   تمتعت   من   لهو   بها   غير   معجل
تجاوزت   أحراسا    وأهوال    معشر   ***   علي   حراص   لو   يشرون   مقتلي
إذا  ما  الثريا  في  السماء   تعرضت   ***   تعرض    أثناء     الوشاح     المفصل
فجئت    وقد    نضت    لنوم     ثيابها   ***   لدى   الستر   إلا   لبسة    المتفضل
فقالت   يمين   الله   ما   لك    حيلة   ***   وما  إن  أرى  عنك   العماية   تنجلي
خرجت   بها    تمشي    تجر    وراءنا   ***   على    أثرينا    ذيل    مرط     مرحل
فلما  أجزنا  ساحة   الحي   وانتحى   ***   بنا  بطن  حقف   ذي   ركام   عقنقل
إذا   التفتت   نحوي    تضوع    ريحها   ***    نسيم   الصبا   جاءت   بريا   القرنفل
إذا   قلت   هاتي    نوليني    تمايلت   ***   علي  هضيم  الكشح  ريا   المخلخل
مهفهفة     بيضاء      غير      مفاضة   ***   ترائبها       مصقولة        كالسجنجل
كبكر     مقاناة      البياض      بصفرة   ***   غذاها   نمير    الماء    غير    المحلل
تصد   وتبدي   عن    أسيل    وتتقي   ***   بناظرة   من   وحش   وجرة   مطفل
وجيد   كجيد   الرئم   ليس   بفاحش   ***   إذا     هي     نصته     ولا     بمعطل
وفرع  يغشي  المتن   أسود   فاحم   ***   أثيث     كقنو     النخلة      المتعثكل
غدائره    مستشزرات    إلى     العلا   ***   تضل  المدارى  في  مثنى  ومرسل
وكشح    لطيف    كالجديل    مخصر   ***   وساق   كأنبوب    السقي    المذلل
وتعطو   برخص   غير    شثن    كأنه   ***   أساريع  ظبي  أو  مساويك   إسحل
تضيء     الظلام     بالعشاء     كأنها   ***   منارة     ممسى     راهب      متبتل
وتضحي فتيت المسك فوق فراشها   ***   نؤوم الضحى لم تنتطق  عن  تفضل
إلى   مثلها    يرنو    الحليم    صبابة   ***   إذا  ما  اسبكرت  بين  درع   ومجول
تسلت  عمايات  الرجال   عن   الصبا   ***   وليس  صباي  عن   هواها   بمنسل
ألا   رب   خصم   فيك   ألوى   رددته   ***   نصيح   على    تعذاله    غير    مؤتل
وليل  كموج   البحر   أرخى   سدوله   ***   علي     بأنواع      الهموم      ليبتلي
فقلت    له    لما     تمطى     بجوزه   ***   وأردف      أعجازا      وناء       بكلكل
ألا  أيها   الليل   الطويل   ألا   انجلي   ***   بصبح   وما   الإصباح    فيك    بأمثل
فيا   لك    من    ليل    كأن    نجومه   ***    بكل    مغار    الفتل    شدت    بيذبل
كأن   الثريا   علقت    في    مصامها   ***   بأمراس   كتان    إلى    صم    جندل
وقد   أغتدي   والطير   في    وكناتها   ***   بمنجرد      قيد      الأوابد       هيكل
مكر     مفر     مقبل     مدبر      معا   ***   كجلمود صخر حطه السيل  من  عل
كميت  يزل   اللبد   عن   حال   متنه   ***   كما      زلت      الصفواء      بالمتنزل
مسح إذا ما السابحات  على  الونى   ***   أثرن      غبارا      بالكديد       المركل
على  العقب  جياش   كأن   اهتزامه   ***   إذا  جاش  فيه  حميه  غلي   مرجل
يطير   الغلام   الخف   عن    صهواته   ***   ويلوي    بأثواب     العنيف     المثقل
درير      كخذروف      الوليد       أمره   ***   تقلب      كفيه       بخيط       موصل
له    أيطلا    ظبي    وساقا    نعامة   ***   وإرخاء     سرحان     وتقريب     تتفل
كأن  على  الكتفين  منه  إذا  انتحى   ***   مداك   عروس   أو    صرية    حنظل
وبات      عليه      سرجه      ولجامه   ***   وبات   بعيني   قائما    غير    مرسل
فعن     لنا     سرب     كأن     نعاجه   ***   عذارى   دوار   في   الملاء    المذيل
فأدبرن    كالجزع     المفصل     بينه   ***   بجيد   معم   في   العشيرة    مخول
فألحقنا          بالهاديات          ودونه   ***   جواحرها    في    صرة    لم     تزيل
فعادى    عداء    بين    ثور     ونعجة   ***   دراكا   ولم    ينضح    بماء    فيغسل
فظل  طهاة  اللحم  من  بين  منضج   ***   صفيف    شواء    أو    قدير    معجل
ورحنا  وراح   الطرف   ينفض   رأسه   ***   متى  ما   ترق   العين   فيه   تسهل
كأن      دماء       الهاديات       بنحره   ***   عصارة      حناء      بشيب      مرجل
وأنت   إذا   استدبرته    سد    فرجه   ***   بضاف  فويق   الأرض   ليس   بأعزل
أحار    ترى     برقا     كأن     وميضه   ***   كلمع   اليدين    في    حبي    مكلل
يضيء   سناه   أو   مصابيح    راهب   ***   أهان  السليط  في   الذبال   المفتل
قعدت   له    وصحبتي    بين    حامر    ***    وبين     إكام     بعد      ما      متأمل
وأضحى يسح  الماء  عن  كل  فيقة   ***   يكب  على   الأذقان   دوح   الكنهبل
وتيماء   لم   يترك   بها   جذع    نخلة   ***   ولا    أطما     إلا     مشيدا     بجندل
كأن      طمية      المجيمر       غدوة   ***   من   السيل   والغثاء   فلكة    مغزل
كأن    أبانا     في     أفانين     ودقه   ***   كبير    أناس    في     بجاد     مزمل
وألقى    بصحراء     الغبيط     بعاعه   ***   نزول  اليماني  ذي  العياب   المخول
كأن   سباعا    فيه    غرقى    غدية   ***   بأرجائه   القصوى   أنابيش    عنصل
على   قطن   بالشيم   أيمن   صوبه   ***   وأيسره     على     الستار      فيذبل
وألقى   ببسيان   مع    الليل    بركه   ***   فانزل  منه  العصم  من   كل   منزل