Night came when lovers' secrets hidden dwell;
Night came the hopeless' sorrow to expel.
Much is it possible to do at night,
Impossible to do, when it is light.
Zuleikha's nightly sorrow passed away,
No grief, but nightly mourning passed away.
Evil and trouble with the day came on;
Sorrow that burns the heart away came on.
No mind towards the jail to find her way,
Nor patience not in jail to spend her day.
Each moment now some costly gift she made,
And in the hand placed of some trusty maid.
Her she would send to Joseph in the jail,
In her own stead to see him, and not fail.
When from the jail that trusted one came back,
To her in caresses she would not lack.
At times upon her foot her head would lie,
Or she would kiss a hundred times her eye.
“This foot has walked in the same place as he,
“And with this eye his fair cheek didst thou see.
“Can I not press a kiss upon his eye,
“Oft on his foot's sole may my cheek not lie,
“That eye yet let me for one moment kiss,
“That sees at times that beauteous face of his.
“Let me for once my face that foot lay on,
“That where he sojourns to the place has gone.”
Then would she question her about his state,
His handsome features, his propitious fate.
“From sorrow has his cheek no furrow seen?
“In his affairs has no knot fastened been?
“In that air does his rose not fade away?
“Or with that form the soil no mischief play?
“Of my dainties sent does he eat or drink?
“Of her who loves him does he ever think?”
With many questions her would she thus ply,
Then rise from her place with blood-streaming eye.
There stood a window on the terrace high,
From which the prison terrace caught the eye.
There would she take her solitary seat,
The window closed of people to the feet.
Her eye-lash threading the pearl in her eye,
Aye at the jail would she look and would cry:
“Ah! who am I his rosy face to see?
“To see his terrace hence enough for me!
“To see his face unworthy though I be,
“To see his door or wall is joy for me.
“My moon wherever he his place may take
“Will mead of Paradise his prison make.
“From Fortune capital that roof has won,
“For in its shade lies of the world the sun.
“My back does that wall ruin with despair,
“That leant against its back my moon is there.
“Fortune with head erect may pass that gate,
“'Neath which my cypress bows his head of late.
“And oh! how prosperous must that threshold be,
“Kissing the feet of charmers such as he!
“Oh! happy 'twould be if his sun's sword-ray
“Of my form made atoms to float away!
“Down from his window I headlong would fall,
“Before his bright sun so glorious all!
“A thousand envies bear I 'gainst that ground,
“Where in such grace he ever moves around.
“From his skirt's dust upon it perfume lies;
“From amber-shedding locks there amber flies.”
In short, till night there nothing else occurred,
Her occupation was this only word.
In such talk to her life her spirit rose;
Her day passed on to night in these her woes.
And she bethought herself, when next night came,
As on the previous night to do the same.
Such was her night, and such as well her day,
So long as in the jail her heart's light lay.
At night to the jail she planned to repair:
By day she would gaze from her window there.
And at no time could aught else there befall,
But looking on himself or on his wall.
Thus Joseph so she in her heart enshrined,
That life or world she never bore in mind.
In her deep thought of him herself she lost;
Out of mind's tablet good and bad she crossed.
In spite of handmaid's oft repeated call,
She to her right sense never came at all,
But told those handmaids in the self-same strain:
“I never to myself shall come again.”
She said: “In words attention do not seek:
“First shake me well, and then begin to speak.
“By shaking ye bring me to reason near;
“To listen then may I open my ear.
“My heart is aye with my prisoner there,
“And from him it comes that I thus despair,
“And in whosoever heart that moon may dwell,
“How of another tale can she tell?”
One day her state of health so changed indeed,
That of the lancet's wound there came a need.
And to no one's eye on the ground there came,
But of Joseph, Joseph, in blood the name.
The light-handed expert her vein that smote
With lancet pen but this letter wrote.
So full of her friend were her skin and vein,
That friend's name from her skin they could but gain.
Oh! happy he who from himself obtains
Release, and knowledge of himself regains!
In his heart his charmer he has so enshrined
That no one else an entrance there may find.
Each vein of his life she so enters there,
That unfilled of her one may see no hair.
Neither scent is left of himself nor hue:
Peace or war with none ever comes to view.
Nor crown nor throne does he ever require:
From his street departs all evil desire.
Of aught but love he ne'er conceives a thought,
And to account himself is never brought.
If he speaks a word, with his love he speaks:
All hope he may have from his love he seeks.
From what is raw to ripe he turns his face:
This being in his thought ne'er finds a place.
Jámi, from self, too, do thou pass away:
To the eternal mansion find thy way.
I know the way there thou dost know indeed:
The wealth of being is not worth thy heed.
Out of this weary life thy foot remove:
The wealthy home of non-existence prove.
Once wast thou not, and didst no loss sustain:
Be not to-day, for all that thou canst gain.
Seek not in self well-being any more;
From such desire no profit is in store.