Turn, Jámi, to the work of ripened men:
Never hereafter do crude work again.
What is it to be ripe? But to be free,
In non-existence' dust to fallen be.
In this rust-coloured vault dost thou not see,
Whilst it is green the fruit clings to the tree?
To ripeness when is turned its face, 'twill fall,
Nor the boys' cruel stone require at all.
Do thou from right men's board thy food provide,—
And stand from the crude slingers' stones aside.
Tear with content up avarice's root;
With resignation break of thy desire the shoot.
Built thee a house of courage in the town;
In Anká's solitude thy rest lay down.
Let loose no tongue to glorify the base;
Incur not for a loaf* the viles' disgrace.
From heads of kingdoms do thou ever flee,
And turn thy back on all the pow'rs that be.
The seasons four in order due behold,
In which the course of time is onwards rolled.
Last year's and this year's spring both equal see.
And how both autumns in their hue agree.
Summer and winter both will intervene,
And thou canst see no difference between.
I know not why in this recurring state,
At such revolving thou shouldst be elate.
In repetition though thou magic find,
It must bring melancholy to the mind.
Pass by the loss and look towards the gain;
To non-existence turn from life again.
Thy mind from works of busy men make free;
From demons' business also loosened be.
Teach not love's magic to the base* of mind,
Nor kindle thou a night-lamp for the blind.
From folly aye do thou thy sense preserve:
Control of sense the traveller* should observe.
The soul that in intelligence may fail,
The lengthening of a life will not avail.
If sighs' smoke* should the brain of wisdom flout,
The lamp of life will with a puff go out.
Youth from thy realm will darkness bear away,
And by old age illumined is thy day.
Of blindness and of distance gone the night,
The fringe of grey hair now has brought thee light.
Since from that drakness thou hast gained no fruit,
Plant in the ray of this light now thy foot.
Perchance thus to a road thou mayst attain,
The scent of faith thy nostrils whence may gain.
From thy white hair what dost thou gain of grace,
If it bestow not whiteness on thy face?
Is thy heart not ashamed of such a hue,
Give it no dye, as would black-dyers do.
Old age is on thy head as glorious snow;
From ice as water should thy grief's tears flow.
Proceed thou, weeping, on contrition's track,
Wash with ice-water from thy heart the black.
Black from thy heart canst thou not wash again,
Of all this blackening I know not the gain.
Since thy hand trembles, cast away thy pen:
Tear up the leaf: thy care is all in vain.
Devoid of light, thy lamp of thought has paled,
And in thy poet's garden water failed:
In this auspicious garden now I see
A raven's foot alone is left to thee.
On peacock's road with such foot wilt thou go
From captives' jail release how wilt thou know?
To cease from doubt and pride is to be free,
From making lines and stringing poetry.
Where is Nizámi? where his pleasing verse,
His subtle nature's troubles to rehearse?
A place within the veil himself he gained,
And all without the veil but he remained.
No profit 's gained since hidden there he lay,
Except that secret which he bore away.
Coming to God, that secret has not he,
Whose heart of all but God may not be free.*
When from this narrow corner he then took the road
Towards the ample space of holiness' abode,
Escaped from those entangled in this snare,
Beneath the skirt of God's throne he lies there.
His heart, of form of Multitude washed free,
Has found the mystery of Unity.
This heart if thou shouldst not find in thy side,
How would it be to turn from self aside,
On one in business skilled thy trust to lay,
An athlete among those who know the way?
That heart replete with wisdom well has said:
“He who is fasting is acquiring bread!”
No woman old knows rightly how to pray,*
Weakness and failure ever are her way.
If thou a man art, on this road proceed;
This with the knowing is the way indeed.
A heart like that which I to thee have sung,
And in describing pearls of mystery strung,
Seek in the side of some old, perfect man,
For this a heart to caputre is the plan.