Ode 440

AT sunset, when the eyes of exiles fill,
And distance makes a desert of the heart,
And all the lonely world grows lonelier still,
I with the other exiles go apart,
And offer up the stranger's evening prayer.
My body shakes with weeping as I pray,
Thinking on all I love that are not there,
So desolately absent far away—
My Love and Friend, and my own land and home.
O aching emptiness of evening skies!
O foolish heart, what tempted thee to roam
So far away from the Beloved's eyes!
To the Beloved's country I belong—
I am a stranger in this foreign place;
Strange are its streets, and strange to me its tongue;
Strange to the stranger each familiar face.
'T is not my city! Take me by the hand,
Divine protector of the lonely ones,
And lead me back to the Beloved's land—
Back to my friends and my companions.
God of the strangers, set once more my feet
Upon the merry home-returning way;
Ah! the good hour when in the wine-house street
My gonfalon I once again display!
Not a soul knows me in this desert place—
Saving the winds of heaven I have no friend;
O to be back where someone knows my face,
And in the old haunts all my money spend!
When I come back, my youth will come back too,
And, little mistress, when we wander wild
Among the meads, so mad I 'll be, that you
Will seem the grown-up one and I the child.
O wind that blows from Shiraz, bring to me
A little dust from my Beloved's street;
Send HAFIZ something, love, that comes from thee,
Touched by thy hand, or trodden by thy feet.