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held. On one occasion, five thousand dinars were sent to him, and on another he was presented with an estate consisting of fourteen villages. The brief notice in Dowlat Shah's account of the Poets of Persia represents him as the finest writer of the age in which he lived. Hafiz thus speaks of him:
Not all the treasured store of ancient days
Can boast the sweetness of Nazámi's lays.
December 20th, 1835.
SAKI, thou know'st I worship wine;
Let that delicious cup be mine.
Wine! pure and limpid as my tears,
Dispeller of a lover's fears;
With thee inspired, with thee made bold,
'Midst combat fierce my post I hold;
With thee inspired, I touch the string,
And, rapt, of love and pleasure sing.
Thou art a lion, seeking prey,
Along the glades where wild deer stray;
And like a lion I would roam,
To bring the joys I seek for home ;
With wine, life's dearest, sweetest treasure,
I feel the thrill of every pleasure:
-Bring, Saki, bring the ruby now;
Its lustre sparkles on thy brow,
And, flashing with a tremulous light,
Has made thy laughing eyes more bright:
Bring, bring the liquid gem, and see
Its power, its wond'rous power, in me.
-No ancestors have I to boast;
The trace of my descent is lost.
From Adam what do I inherit?
What but a sad and troubled spirit?
For human life, from oldest time,
Is ever mark'd with guilt and crime;
And man, betrayer and betray'd,
Lurks like a spider in the shade ;
But wine still plays a magic part,
Exalting high the drooping heart.
Then, Saki, linger not, but give
The blissful balm on which I live.
Come, bring the juice of the purple vine,
Bring, bring the musky-scented wine;
A draught of wine the memory clears,
And wakens thoughts of other years.-
When blushing dawn illumes the sky,
Fill up a bumper, fill it high!
That wine, which to the fever'd lip,
With anguish parch'd, when given to sip,
Imparts a rapturous smile, and throws
A veil o'er all distracting woes:
That wine, the lamp which, night and day,
Lights us along our weary way;
Which strews the path with fruits and flowers,
And gilds with joy our fleeting hours;
And lifts the mind, now grown elate,
To Jamshid's glory, Jamshid's state.--
But of the kingly race beware;
'Tis not for thee their smiles to share :
Smiles are deceitful, fire looks bright,
And sheds a lucid dazzling light;
But, though attractive, it is known
That safety dwells in flight alone.
The moth the taper's radiance tries,
But 'midst the flame in torment dies
And none lament that foolish pride
Which seeks to be with kings allied.—
Bring, bring the musky-scented wine!
'Tis the key of mirth, and must be mine:
The key which opens wide the door
Of rapture's rich and varied store;
Which makes the mounting spirits glad,
And feel the pomp of Kai-Kobâd.
Wine o'er the temper casts a spell
Of kindness indescribable:
Then, since I'm in the drinking vein,
Bring, bring the luscious wine again!
From the vintner another fresh supply,
And let not the reveller's lips be dry.---
Come, Saki, thou'rt not old, nor lame;
Thou'dst not incur from a minstrel blame;
Let him wash from his heart the dust of sorrow;
Let him riot in social bliss till the morrow;
Let the sound of the goblet delight his ear,
Like the music that breathes from Heaven's own sphere.
Mark, where instruction pours upon the mind
The light of knowledge, simple or refined;
Shaikhs of each tribe have children there, and each
Studies whate'er the bearded sage can teach.
Thence his attainments Kais assiduous drew,
And scattered pearls from lips of ruby hue;
And there, of different tribe and gentle mien,
A lovely maid of tender years was seen:
Her mental powers an early bloom displayed:
Her peaceful form in simple garb array'd
Bright as the morn, her cypress shape, and eyes
Dark as the stag's, were view'd with fond surprise :
And when her cheek this Arab moon reveal'd,
A thousand hearts were won; no pride, no shield,
Could check her beauty's power, resistless grown,
Given to enthral and charm-but chiefly one.
Her richly flowing locks were black as night,
And Lailí she was call'd-that heart's delight:
One single glance the nerves to frenzy wrought,
One single glance bewilder'd every thought;
And, when o'er Kais affection's blushing rose
Diffused its sweetness, from him fled repose: