AND Hadijeh went home sorrowful, and her heart was full of love. And her husband became an abomination to her; and she went about the house not knowing what she did: as a dead man is carried to the grave.*

And Valeh, like a wounded bird, strove with his fate; every moment love bore over him like the spring torrents from the mountains; in the flame of love his whole world was consumed. Day and night he roamed about her house. In the darkness he sat at her threshold, and gazed at the stars like a wanderer in the desert. And he cried out: “Who am I to come near her threshold? The earth at her door is pure gold: the dust of it is medicine for all the ills of the world. Ungrateful that I am to weep, I who kneel at her gates.” And when morning threw out his banners of light he left his station and went to the town and the streets and the bazaars, if haply he might find peace there, but found no peace.

And one day he bethought himself of a cunning plan. And he got himself a Dervish's tattered robe and the staff and the gourd, and so went to the house of his beloved. And when he came nigh he called aloud: “Blessed be the threshold of this house! May all happiness wait on it, and may all who enter in be blessed!” And above in her chamber Hadijeh heard the cry, and said to her maid: “That is no Dervish: it is the voice of one whose trade is love.” And the maid went down and came up and said: “It is Valeh.” And Hadijeh rose from her place and ran to the door, and, lo, there was Valeh standing. He was clothed in rags, and his cheeks were pale and thin and haggard. And when she saw his piteous state her eyes were dimmed with tears; and then she spake to that poor beggar­man: “Alas, poor beggar, what can I give you? Why are you a beggar? What would you more? For all I have is yours, and I myself; if you want my soul, I give it here and now; if you ask my heart, I throw it to your dogs. Behold, oh beggar, I kneel in the dust at your feet.” And she led him by the hand and brought him to her chamber. And she made him sit at her side. Who would cry out on royal pride who saw that high Queen put the poor beggarman at her right hand? And there was he rewarded for his pains and waiting, and there was the great grief rolled from his heart; and there in all content at his beloved's side he abode till morning. And so great was the power of honour and purity that no thought of uncleanness entered his soul. In the kingdom of love when Love is king there is no place for lust. Lust is born of unclean desire, even as pride of ambition; and when the heart is afire with love, the heart glows and the rubbish of uncleanness is consumed.

And even so they abode together, those two twin souls. Hear my words, oh reader, and understand.

[Valeh here has written on the margin (in Arabic): “May the Lord prosper my Beloved. (In Persian): He whose heart is afire with love is one man, he who is the bond-slave of lust is another man; he who drinks at the well of love is one man, he who is drunken with desire is another man. In the battle-field of love fortune is various; victory is one thing, defeat is another—crying and lamentation and mourn­ing and woe—even such is lust; but love is something else.]