Ode 24

Do you see that dark girl yonder?
Black as Erebus her hair—
All the sweetness and the wonder
Of the world belong to her:
Did you ever see a woman
Quite so black—yet quite so fair?
Every goodness that is human
Or divine belongs to her.
On her lips is all the wisdom,
Sealed up with a ruby there—
Solomon's own seal and wisdom
Both alike belong to her.
Golden is her skin, as golden
As the wheat that proved a snare
To old Adam once in Eden—*
Yes, the Fall belongs to her:
Adam-like, I too have eaten,
Adam-like is my despair—
Eaten the forbidden wheaten
Whiteness that belongs to her.

On a journey she is starting,
How can I the anguish bear!
O the pain of her departing!
May the peace belong to her.
Yet if only she were feeling
Just a little sorrier!
Wounded heart, your wound 's past healing—
Healing too belongs to her.

Undefiled her skirt was ever
By life's muddy thoroughfare,
Pure in sight of both worlds—never
Breath of shame belongs to her.

Surely this is mystifying—
I am dying of despair,
And that dark girl sees me dying;
Yet she knows belongs to her
The holy breath revivifying
Of Jesus Lord that Mary bare.

Yet if truly I must leave her,
Even in the sepulchre,
HAFIZ, dying true believer,
Still shall sing his songs to her.