WHEN I behold the garden in the spring,
Rejoicing like a nightingale I sing;
And if the cruel gardener, with his guile,
Try to ensnare me—like a rose I smile.
The morning breeze that from the garden flies
Can give no joy, no gladness, to my eyes;
For, useless breeze, never to me he brings
The fragrance of Thy garments on his wings.
But here before the garden door I wait;
Why should I deem myself unfortunate?
For by Thy holy threshold shall I stay,
And with my lashes sweep its dust away.
This bird, my heart, is taken in Thy net
And flutters unavailingly; but yet,
Thy captive though it be, how canst Thou keep
Prisoned the sighs that from my bosom leap?
O rare and precious Phœnix of the soul,
Vainly I sought for thee; beyond control
My heart has yearned for thee; ever thy wings
Have hung above my soul’s imaginings.
Thou Enemy, that hold’st me from my quest,
If even in the sea thou enterest
When from my anger thou dost seek to flee,
My burning soul will find and conquer thee.
O bulbul, glad within the garden sing,
’Tis Makhfi who has won for thee the spring
That blossoms in thy heart; but in her own
The barren winds of lonely autumn moan.