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The Rhyme Maker

Theme:  Love and Romance

Saki: cup-bearer

“Magian monk” (last stanza): The “magicians”, or Zoroastrians (the “Magi” of the nativity story in Christian scriptures) were the dominant religious sect in Persia before Islam. They were often the semi-clandestine wine makers/tavern owners after Islam became the official state religion.

Richard Le Gallienne, the translator of this poem of Hafiz, also has his own poems posted at
-S. H. Bass  

Special Notes:  Persian Wine Poetry

more Hafiz at
translations by Gertrude Bell
A flower-tinted cheek
Arise! and fill a golden goblet up
Arise, oh Cupbearer, rise!

Forget not when dear friend
From out the street of So-and-So
From the garden of Heaven
Hast thou forgotten
Lay not reproach at the drunkard's door

Mirth, Spring, to linger in a garden fair

My friend has fled
Not all the sum of earthly happiness

Not one is filled with madness
Oh Cup-bearer, set my glass afire

Singer, sweet Singer, fresh notes strew

The bird of gardens sang unto the rose
The breath of Dawn
The rose has flushed red
The rose is not fair
The secret draft of wine

What drunkenness is this
What is wrought in the forge
Where is my ruined life

Wind from the east

translations by Richard Le Gallienne 
Comrades, the morning breaks
Happy returns of this good day

Heavens! do you think this is a time

Last night, as half asleep I dreaming lay

My hermitage the tavern is

O, I've good news for you – the spring

Once more red wine

Saki, for God's love, come and fill

The Abbot of the Wine-House

Tis an unstable world

Two Gallons of old wine

What ails thee, Saki! Wine

When thus I sit with roses in my breast

With last night’s wine still singing

More English translations of Hafiz:
Song of Hafiz (unknown - 1875)
The Feast Of Spring (Whinfield - 1917)

No! Saki – take the wine away
Hafiz (c.1320-1389), Persian poet
English verse by Richard Le Gallienne (1866-1947), English writer

No! Saki – take the wine away!
I have no need of it to-day ;
So drunk am I with adoration,
No longer have I any need
Of commonplace intoxication.

How should a man whose eyes may drink
Her beauty, like the Northern Star,
In a delicious meditation,
Remain contented any more
With common wine out of a jar!
No, Saki – take the wine away;
Though it were poured from heaven's brink,
I 'd spill it on the tavern floor –
I have no need of it to-day.

Of course, I' l1 go on getting drunk,
But it will be another way –
A more august inebriation;
And I 'm afraid, old Magian monk,
You 'll almost have to close your door
When HAFIZ buys your wine no more –
That is the worst of reformation.

Ode 48 from Odes from the Divan of Hafiz (freely rendered from literal translations) 1905

The Internet Archive logoFREE E-BOOK
Odes from the Divan of Hafiz (1905)
English verse by Richard Le Gallienne


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