Monday, 6 August 2018

The Loves of Shirin - Sheykhi

The spot at which did King Khusrev Perviz light
Was e'en the ruined dwelling of that moon bright.
Whilst wand'ring on, he comes upon that parterre,
As on he strolls, it opes before his eyes fair.
Among the trees a night-hued courser stands bound
(On Heaven's charger's breast were envy's scars found).
As softly moved he, sudden on his sight gleamed
A moon that in the water shining bright beamed.
O what a moon! a sun o'er earth that light rains—
Triumphant, happy, blest he who her shade gains.
She'd made the pool a casket for her frame fair,
And all about that casket spread her dark hair.
Her hand did yonder curling serpents back throw—
The dawn 'tis, and thereof we never tired grow.
He saw the water round about her ear play;
In rings upon her shoulders her dark locks lay.
When yon heart-winning moon before the King beamed,
The King became the sun—in him Love's fire gleamed.
The tears e'en like to water from his eyes rolled;
Was't strange, when did a Watery Sign the Moon hold?
No power was left him, neither sport nor pleasure;
He bit his finger, wildered beyond measure.
Unconscious of his gaze, the jasmine-breasted—
The hyacinths o'er the narcissi rested.
When shone her day-face, from that musky cloud bare,
Her eyes oped Shirin and beheld the King there.
Within that fountain, through dismay and shamed fright,
She trembled as on water doth the moonlight.
Than this no other refuge could yon moon find
That she should round about her her own locks bind.
The moon yet beameth through the hair, the dark night,
With tresses how could be concealed the sun bright?
To hide her from him, round her she her hair flung,
And thus as veil her night before her day hung.
When Ferhad bound to fair Shirin his heart's core,
From out his breast Love many a bitter wail tore.
On tablet of his life graved, shown was Shirin;
Of all else emptied, filled alone with Shirin.
As loathed he the companionship of mankind,
In wild beasts 'midst the hills did he his friends find.
His guide was Pain; his boon companion, Grief's throe;
His comrade, Sorrow; and his closest friend, Woe.
Thus wand'ring on, he knew not day from dark night;
For many days he onward strayed in sad plight.
Although before his face a wall of stone rise,
Until he strikes against it, blind his two eyes.
Through yearning for his love he from the world fled;
From out his soul into his body Death sped.
Because he knew that when the earthly frame goes,
Eternal, Everlasting Being love shows,
He fervent longed to be from fleshly bonds free,
That then his life in very truth might Life see.
In sooth, 'till dies the body, Life is ne'er found,
Nor with the love of life the Loved One e'er found.

Sheykhi or Sheykih (full name Sinan Şeyhi)  (died 1428) Turkey
The book (below) gives a list of translators, but doesn't say which items they translated!
Source: The sacred books and early literature of the East; with an historical survey and descriptions
by Charles Francis Horne, Parke, 1917

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