Ode 537

THE mercy of God, so long as there is day
To follow night, till the last morning break;
The mercy of God, so long as the sweet strings
One with another a sweet union make;
On Arak* and the little house I pray
That on the corner of the hill-side stands,
Above the winding stream that scarcely sings
For the deep sands.

I am the man who prays for whoso fares
Lonely about the world; the folk that go,
Lost for a friend's hand or a woman's breast,
On aching journeys; and for all who know
No lights at evening, put I up my prayers.
Ah! but there is one lovely traveller
For whom I pray more than for all the rest—
O harm not her!

Longing for news of her, I am as dead:
O messenger, thou art a weary while!
My love! my love! in every place thou art
My home, my peace; my life is in thy smile,
As the mote's life in the sun, and comforted
Is all my changing state remembering thee;
Still at the judgment this old flaming heart
Thy heart shall be.

How dare I set my hopes on such a queen,
Being what I am! HAFIZ, hast lost thy wit?
Rakehell and profligate, resounding word
For evil living, yea! and proud of it;
Incarnate infamy and name obscene:
Ah! set thy soaring love on yonder star,
Thou sin that singest like some holy bird—
'T is not so far.