Ali Salami

Rumi: Ghazal 436 [The Fragrance of Thy Wine]

“Who knocks at my gate?” he queried with a voice clear.

“Naught but a meek slave,” I returned, “Thy serf, ready to adhere.”

“And what dost thou seek herein?” he pressed.

“O luminary of night,” quoth I, “To proffer thee my best.”

“How long wilt thou tarry?” he posed in query.

“Till thou beckon,” was my reply, steadfast and weary.

“And how long shall thy fervor last?” further he inquired.

“Till time’s very end,” I avowed, with passion unexpired.

On quest for love I ventured forth, with vows I did bind,

Professing riches, realms, and renown, to love resigned;

For in the court of tender passion, such gems hold no weight,

‘Tis love alone that rules supreme, in its fervent, noble state.

“The court calls for proof,” quoth he in a grave tone.

“My weeping,” I said, “and my visage’s pallor, my claim alone.”

“Thy witness stands not in court,” he rebutted with decree,

“And as for thy tears: wayward they be, marred by iniquity.”

“By the majesty of thy justice,” I did persist,

“Both pure, both guiltless,” I did insist.

“Who was thy comrade on thy quest?” he sought to learn.

“Thine own gaze,” I avowed, “O my king, for which I yearn.”

“And who bade thee hither?” he further did pry.

“The fragrance of thy wine,” I unveiled under thy sky.

“What be thy purpose?” he did inquire.

“To manifest fealty, to proffer amity,” was my desire.

“What dost thou seek from me?” he questioned with care.

“The bounty thou grantest everyone,” I said with yearn.

“Which realm holds more beauty, more charm?” he delved.

“The royal court,” I confessed, “in its grandeur overwhelmed.”

“And what sights there met thine eye?” he urged in his quest.

“Boundless largesse,” I recounted, “a bounty vast and blessed.”

“Why lies the path forsaken?” he frowned.

“For dread of the brigand,” I disclosed, a truth profound.

“And who might this marauder be?” his inquiry came.

“Scorn and dishonor,” I unveiled, the culprits of such fame.

“Where may one find refuge?” he mused with thought.

“In austerity, in self-control,” I proposed, as ought.

“And what be this austerity thou dost say?” he asked with care.

“The road to serenity,” I expounded, “free from despair.”

“Whence comes the misfortune?” he inquired, his tone grave.

“Near to thy affection,” I conceded, “that mighty wave.”

“And how dost thou stand in such a place?” he sought to know.

“Unwavering,” I asserted, “amidst the ebb and flow.”

Hold thy tongue, for should I his clever jests relay,

Thou’dst be lost in full, leaving naught but disarray;

Neither door nor beam would in their places stay,

Swept away by laughter, in his witty play’s sway.


گفتا که کیست بر در گفتم کمین غلامت

گفتا چه کار داری گفتم مها سلامت

گفتا که چند رانی گفتم که تا بخوانی

گفتا که چند جوشی گفتم که تا قیامت

دعوی عشق کردم سوگند‌ها بخوردم

کز عشق یاوه کردم من ملکت و شهامت

گفتا برای دعوی قاضی گواه خواهد

گفتم گواه اشکم زردی رخ علامت

گفتا گواه جرحست تردامن‌ست چشمت

گفتم به فر عدلت عدلند و بی‌غرامت

گفتا که بود همره گفتم خیالت ای شه

گفتا که خواندت این جا گفتم که بوی جامت

گفتا چه عزم داری گفتم وفا و یاری

گفتا ز من چه خواهی گفتم که لطف عام‌ت

گفتا کجاست خوش‌تر گفتم که قصر قیصر

گفتا چه دیدی آن جا گفتم که صد کرامت

گفتا چراست خالی گفتم ز بیم رهزن

گفتا که کیست رهزن گفتم که این ملامت

گفتا کجاست ایمن گفتم که زهد و تقوا

گفتا که زهد چه‌بود گفتم ره سلامت

گفتا کجاست آفت گفتم به کوی عشقت

گفتا که چونی آن جا گفتم در استقامت

خامش که گر بگویم من نکته‌های او را

از خویشتن برآیی نی در بود نه بامت

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