Formation of a fourth Divan.

THE poems which during this length of time I had composed, I now collected together, and this is my fourth Divan. In the above-mentioned town was the scientific Seyyid Mir Mohammed Taki Rizâvi of Khorâsân, who was one of the pious men and standards of the age; and of the renowned and eminent men of that place was the late Mojtahid Mawlâna Mohammed Rafia, of Gilan. In that town was also the excellent col­lector of accomplishments, the investigator of truth, Mawlâna Mohammed Shafia of Gilan, one of the most acute of philosophers, and in the mean stage of wisdom the paragon of his times. All of them displayed towards me a perfect friendship and familiarity, and now, having reached the world of perpetuity, not one of them is bound in the fetters of life. At this period I took a fancy to the style of Saadi's Bostân, and having begun to write in that species of composition, and given to my Mes­navi the name of Kharâbât, I entered many sub­lime subjects and much agreeable discourse in that book, in verse. The opening of my poem is this:*

Thanks to the old man of the tavern,
Who washed from my heart the restraint of the law;
Who conferred on me a mind free from thought;
And gave me such a dwelling as a wine-house.

One thousand two hundred verses of it were writ­ten, but it never arrived at completion: I here pen a few couplets which I have borne in my recol­lection.

Listen, O monarch of happy disposition;
Open your ears for a moment to a sage adviser.
First of all, take the path of a good institution;
For the people incline to the religion of their kings.
A Sovereign should be a man of approved morality,
And should sympathize with the sufferings of his followers.
You that are the mounted leader* on the road of life, beware;
Let it not appear, that you are a guide to error.
If you do not yourself know, ask of him that knows;
Ask of the enlightened of mind, the intelligent.
Be a purchaser of those who improve their understandings;
To dull and mean persons say, I despise you.
Cherish the mind and intellect that solve difficulties,
And those that seek knowledge with sense and discretion.
Conduct your affairs by the guidance of the experienced;
Make your head weigh heavy with the brain of intellect.
A light-headed person is unfit for business;
For an empty drum is better than a head devoid of brains.
Endeavour to breathe with an enlightened spirit:
A learned man is better than a whole world of ignorants.
Look into the character of those who profess learning;
Neither the rose nor the Zeimarân is without a thorn.*
Every troop of men, in the convent, as in the wine-house,
Has evermore some strange foot in the midst of it.
In every jar that you see, are both dregs and clear wine:
And wide is the expanse of the plain of vain glory.
When you reckon an empty pretension as one full of merit,*
The truly learned man will withdraw from your side.
In that place where on potsherds a current price is paid,
Why should the pearl be brought forth from its shell?
Were excellence easy of gain to mere pretension,
Every silly boaster would become a Plato.
If a man of low capacity steals away a few words,
He is not thereby made commensurable with the deep ocean.
Let it be hidden from common sight, which is the sharp Egyptian, and which the blunt wooden sword;
It will be manifest to the eye of the quick-sighted.
The world is deceitful; should you wish for a touch-stone,
So that no doubt may remain behind the curtain of conceal­ment;
Make, O virtuous man, you who meditate on experience,
A trial of your companions by their temper and qualities.
In appearance, all have the human countenance;
In disposition, many are inferior to calves and asses.
Make not a sour face to the counsel of an adviser;
A well-wisher's language is ever bitter.
That happy man bears away the ball of love and friendship,
Who with his friend is mild, and is harsh with his enemy.
Root out of your heart the vein and fibre of obduracy;
It is a hard stone, that breaks every lancet:
The counsel of the searcher after wisdom takes no hold on you;
As the rain of providence never penetrates to the foundation of a mountain.
Before the breath of good advisers be as the dust of the earth;
And an acceptor of truth from the pure heart.
Why do you sleep in repose, O possessor of the crown and helmet!
With poor men around you, destitute of meat or clothing;
Hidden in their mourning weeds, as musk is in its bag,
They have bellies without food, and throats parched with thirst.
Seek not comfort from the preparations of merriment;
But labour for the happiness of the people of God.
If you do not tie up the oppressor in the noose of a halter,
You must tear away your heart from royalty and prosperity.
What grace of happiness can remain in that country,
Where the dark criminal stretches forth his arm?
Cherish not the vile and base; beware;
Sow not the seed of a tree which is all thorn.
when to the high court of the king of kings
A man provoked to intolerance by the injustice of the oppressor
Complains, and says, “The Soltân will award him the punishment he deserves:”
If thou grantest him not justice, God will grant it.
Wherever in thy empire iniquity is gone abroad,
There it is as though thy authority were cancelled.
The heart of the weak cannot bear a rude touch;
Be fearful of the sigh of the enfeebled.
Fear not the roar of the leopards of war;
But dread the groans of an afflicted heart.
Become not the laughing-stock of your friendly-looking enemy;
That contemptible character would tear you up by the roots.
The shepherd who relies on the claws of the wolf
Is void of utility; or rather his detriment is great.
Indulge not in the pleasures of base sensuality;
What pleasure is greater than justice and generosity?
The man departs; but his good name remains;
Happy is he that seeks to make a good end!