My Friend – Rabindranath Tagore

Art thou abroad on this stormy night 

on thy journey of love, my friend? 

The sky groans like one in despair. 
I have no sleep tonight. 

Ever and again I open my door and look out on 

the darkness, my friend! 
I can see nothing before me. 

I wonder where lies thy path! 
By what dim shore of the ink-black river, 

by what far edge of the frowning forest, 

through what mazy depth of gloom art thou threading 

thy course to come to me, my friend?

Maya – Rabindranath Tagore

That I should make much of myself and turn it on all sides, 

thus casting colored shadows on thy radiance 

—such is thy Maya. 
Thou settest a barrier in thine own being 

and then callest thy severed self in myriad notes. 

This thy self-separation has taken body in me. 
The poignant song is echoed through all the sky in many-coloued tears 

and smiles, alarms and hopes; waves rise up and sink again, 

dreams break and form. 

In me is thy own defeat of self. 
This screen that thou hast raised is painted with innumerable figures 

with the brush of the night and the day. 

Behind it thy seat is woven in wondrous mysteries of curves, 

casting away all barren lines of straightness. 
The great pageant of thee and me has overspread the sky. 

With the tune of thee and me all the air is vibrant, 

and all ages pass with the hiding and seeking of thee and me. 

Farewell – Rabindranath Tagore

I have got my leave. Bid me farewell, my brothers! 

I bow to you all and take my departure. 
Here I give back the keys of my door 

—and I give up all claims to my house. 

I only ask for last kind words from you. 
We were neighbors for long, 

but I received more than I could give. 

Now the day has dawned 

and the lamp that lit my dark corner is out. 

A summons has come and I am ready for my journey. 

Winning Women – Rihanna 








Gonna win it no limit, strong women we are.

Gotta win it no limit, strong women we are.

Gonna win it no limit, strong women we are.

Gotta win it no limit, strong women we are.

Where them girls at. (girls at).

That like to be in charge.

When the heat get too hot, they just keep turnin’ it up.

Never let ‘em cheat-sheet, they just sweat, gotta go hard.

Where those winning women thats really willin to take it off!

Where them girls at. (girls at).

That like to be in charge.

When the heat gets too hot, just keep turnin’ it up.

Never let ‘em cheat-sheet, they just sweat, gotta go hard.

Where those winning women thats really willin to take it off!
[Verse 1]

Uh-uh-uh-uh huh.

When you see both of us on catwalk representing our culture.

Uh-uh-uh-uh huh.

Well the time and day has changed,

where the women wear the pants without changing the last name.

Uh-uh-uh-uh huh.

Where the word diva, diva, mean viva, viva, we run las vegas.

Uh-uh-uh-uh huh.

And then the stock exchange, bang, than we got claim to the change.
All, all, all a girl want, wants.

All a girl need, needs.

Its just all those, simple things like to be cared for.

Just to have him, be there for.

All that matters, it’s those sweet things.

That’s all a girl really wants.

Where them girls at. (girls at).

That like to be in charge.

When the heat get too hot, they just keep turnin’ it up.

Never let ‘em cheat-sheet, they just sweat, gotta go hard.

Where those winning women thats really willin to take it off!

Where them girls at. (girls at).

That like to be in charge.

When the heat gets too hot, just keep turnin’ it up.

Never let ‘em cheat-sheet, they just sweat, gotta go hard.

Where those winning women thats really willin to take it off!
[Verse 2]

Uh-uh-uh-uh huh.

We are too confident, me and her talk to phil, never happen again.

Uh-uh-uh-uh huh.

We don’t wait, we get paid, for a trait holiday, we sip lemonade.

Uh-uh-uh-uh huh.

Instead of doing what he wants, we do what we want, buying homes in geneva.

Uh-uh-uh-uh huh.

Like when the sound baby glance, rings, and that means more than things.
All, all, all a girl want, wants.

All a girl need, needs.

Its just of those, simple things like to be cared for.

Just to have him, be there for.

All that matters, it’s those sweet things.

That’s all a girl really wants.
[Chorus x2]

Where them girls at. (girls at).

That like to be in charge.

When the heat get too hot, they just keep turnin’ it up.

Never let ‘em cheat-sheet, they just sweat, gotta go hard.

Where those winning women thats really willin to take it off!

Where them girls at. (girls at).

That like to be in charge.

When the heat gets too hot, just keep turnin’ it up.

Never let ‘em cheat-sheet, they just sweat, gotta go hard.

Where those winning women thats really willin to take it off!

 Hatem 02 – Johann Wolfgang von Goethe

Book Of Suleika

O, SAY, ‘neath what celestial sign 
The day doth lie, 

When ne’er again this heart of mine 
Away will fly? 

And e’en though fled (what thought divine!) 
Would near me lie?– 

On the soft couch, on whose sweet shrine 
My heart near hers will lie!

 Hatem 01  – Johann Wolfgang von Goethe

Book Of Suleika 
NOT occasion makes the thief; 
She’s the greatest of the whole; 

For Love’s relics, to my grief, 
From my aching heart she stole. 
She hath given it to thee,– 
All the joy my life had known, 

So that, in my poverty, 
Life I seek from thee alone. 
Yet compassion greets me straight 
In the lustre of thine eye, 

And I bless my newborn fate, 
As within thine arms I lie.

 Suleika’s Love – Johann Wolfgang von Goethe

Book Of Suleika 
ONCE, methought, in the night hours cold, 

That I saw the moon in my sleep; 

But as soon as I waken’d, behold 

Unawares rose the sun from the deep. 

THAT Suleika’s love was so strong 

For Joseph, need cause no surprise; 

He was young, youth pleaseth the eyes,– 

He was fair, they say, beyond measure 

Fair was she, and so great was their pleasure. 

But that thou, who awaitedst me long, 

Youthful glances of fire dost throw me, 

Soon wilt bless me, thy love now dost show me, 

This shall my joyous numbers proclaim, 

Thee I for ever Suleika shall name.

Book Of Gloom – Johann Wolfgang von Goethe

IT is a fault oneself to praise, 

And yet ’tis done by each whose deeds are kind; 

And if there’s no deceit in what he says, 

The good we still as good shall find. 

Let, then, ye fools, that wise man taste 
Of joy, who fancies that he s wise, 

That he, a fool like you, may waste 

Th’ insipid thanks the world supplies.

Book Of Contemplation – Johann Wolfgang von Goethe

For Woman

FOR woman due allowance make! 
Form’d of a crooked rib was she,– 
By Heaven she could not straightened be. 

Attempt to bend her, and she’ll break; 

If left alone, more crooked grows madam; 

What well could be worse, my good friend, Adam?– 

For woman due allowance make; 

‘Twere grievous, if thy rib should break!

Progress Report – Vikram Seth

My need has frayed with time; you said it would. 

It has; I can walk again across the flood 

Of gold sil popples on the straw-gold hills 

Under a deep Californian sky that expels 

All truant clouds; watch squads of cattle graze 

By the radio-telescope; blue-battered jays 

Flash raucous squaking by my swivelling head 

While squirrels sine-wave past over the dead 

Oak-leaves, and not miss you_although I may 

Admit that near the telescope yesterday 

By a small bushcovered gully I blundered on 

Five golden fox-cubs playing in the sun 

And wished you had been there to see them play; 

But that I only mention by the way.

At Evening – Vikram Seth

Let me now sleep, let me not think, let me 

Not ache with inconsistent tenderness. 

It was untenable delight; we are free– 

Separate, equal–and if loverless, 

Love consumes time which is more dear than love, 

More unreplicable. With everything 

Thus posited, the choice was clear enough 

And daylight ratified our reckoning. 
Now only movement marks the birds from the pines; 

Now it’s dark; the blinded stars appear; 

I am alone, you cannot read these lines 

Who are with me when no one else is here, 

Who are with me and cannot hear my voice 

And take my hand and abrogate the choice.

A Style Of Loving – Vikram Seth

Light now restricts itself 

To the top half of trees; 

The angled sun 

Slants honey-coloured rays 

That lessen to the ground 

As we bike through 

The corridor of Palm Drive 

We two 
Have reached a safety the years 

Can claim to have created: 

Unconsumated, therefore 

Unjaded, unsated. 

Picnic, movie, ice-cream; 

Talk; to clear my head 

Hot buttered rum – coffee for you; 

And so not to bed 
And so we have set the question 

Aside, gently. 

Were we to become lovers 

Where would our best friends be? 

You do not wish, nor I 

To risk again 

This savoured light for noon’s 

High joy or pain.

The Frog And The Nightingale – Vikram Seth

Once upon a time a frog 

Croaked away in Bingle Bog 

Every night from dusk to dawn 

He croaked awn and awn and awn 

Other creatures loathed his voice, 

But, alas, they had no choice, 

And the crass cacophony 

Blared out from the sumac tree 

At whose foot the frog each night 

Minstrelled on till morning night 
Neither stones nor prayers nor sticks. 

Insults or complaints or bricks 

Stilled the frogs determination 

To display his heart’s elation. 

But one night a nightingale 

In the moonlight cold and pale 

Perched upon the sumac tree 

Casting forth her melody 

Dumbstruck sat the gaping frog 

And the whole admiring bog 

Stared towards the sumac, rapt, 
And, when she had ended, clapped, 

Ducks had swum and herons waded 

To her as she serenaded 

And a solitary loon 

Wept, beneath the summer moon. 

Toads and teals and tiddlers, captured 

By her voice, cheered on, enraptured: 

“Bravo! ” “Too divine! ” “Encore! ” 

So the nightingale once more, 

Quite unused to such applause, 

Sang till dawn without a pause. 
Next night when the Nightingale 

Shook her head and twitched her tail, 

Closed an eye and fluffed a wing 

And had cleared her throat to sing 

She was startled by a croak. 

“Sorry – was that you who spoke? ” 

She enquired when the frog 

Hopped towards her from the bog. 

“Yes,” the frog replied. “You see, 

I’m the frog who owns this tree 

In this bog I’ve long been known 

For my splendid baritone 

And, of course, I wield my pen 

For Bog Trumpet now and then” 
“Did you… did you like my song? ” 

“Not too bad – but far too long. 

The technique was fine of course, 

But it lacked a certain force”. 

“Oh! ” the nightingale confessed. 

Greatly flattered and impressed 

That a critic of such note 

Had discussed her art and throat: 

“I don’t think the song’s divine. 

But – oh, well – at least it’s mine”. 
“That’s not much to boast about”. 

Said the heartless frog. “Without 

Proper training such as I 

  • And few others can supply. 

You’ll remain a mere beginner. 

But with me you’ll be a winner” 

“Dearest frog”, the nightingale 

Breathed: “This is a fairy tale – 

And you are Mozart in disguise 

Come to earth before my eyes”. 
“Well I charge a modest fee.” 

“Oh! ” “But it won’t hurt, you’ll see” 

Now the nightingale inspired, 

Flushed with confidence, and fired 

With both art and adoration, 

Sang – and was a huge sensation. 

Animals for miles around 

Flocked towards the magic sound, 

And the frog with great precision 

Counted heads and charged admission. 
Though next morning it was raining, 

He began her vocal training. 

“But I can’t sing in this weather” 

“Come my dear – we’ll sing together. 

Just put on your scarf and sash, 

Koo-oh-ah! ko-ash! ko-ash! ” 

So the frog and nightingale 

Journeyed up and down the scale 

For six hours, till she was shivering 

and her voice was hoarse and quivering. 
Though subdued and sleep deprived, 

In the night her throat revived, 

And the sumac tree was bowed, 

With a breathless, titled crowd: 

Owl of Sandwich, Duck of Kent, 

Mallard and Milady Trent, 

Martin Cardinal Mephisto, 

And the Coot of Monte Cristo, 

Ladies with tiaras glittering 

In the interval sat twittering – 

And the frog observed them glitter 

With a joy both sweet and bitter. 
Every day the frog who’d sold her 

Songs for silver tried to scold her: 

“You must practice even longer 

Till your voice, like mine grows stronger. 

In the second song last night 

You got nervous in mid-flight. 

And, my dear, lay on more trills: 

Audiences enjoy such frills. 

You must make your public happier: 

Give them something sharper snappier. 

We must aim for better billings. 

You still owe me sixty shillings.” 
Day by day the nightingale 

Grew more sorrowful and pale. 

Night on night her tired song 

Zipped and trilled and bounced along, 

Till the birds and beasts grew tired 

At a voice so uninspired 

And the ticket office gross 

Crashed, and she grew more morose – 

For her ears were now addicted 

To applause quite unrestricted, 

And to sing into the night 

All alone gave no delight. 
Now the frog puffed up with rage. 

“Brainless bird – you’re on the stage – 

Use your wits and follow fashion. 

Puff your lungs out with your passion.” 

Trembling, terrified to fail, 

Blind with tears, the nightingale 

Heard him out in silence, tried, 

Puffed up, burst a vein, and died. 
Said the frog: “I tried to teach her, 

But she was a stupid creature – 

Far too nervous, far too tense. 

Far too prone to influence. 

Well, poor bird – she should have known 

That your song must be your own. 

That’s why I sing with panache: 

“Koo-oh-ah! ko-ash! ko-ash! ” 

And the foghorn of the frog 

Blared unrivalled through the bog.

All You Who Sleep Tonight – Vikram Seth

All you who sleep tonight 

Far from the ones you love, 

No hand to left or right 

And emptiness above – 
Know that you aren’t alone 

The whole world shares your tears, 

Some for two nights or one, 

And some for all their years.

The New Moon – Zora Bernice May Cross

What have you got in your knapsack fair, 

White moon, bright moon, pearling the air, 

Spinning your bobbins and fabrics free, 

Fleet moon, sweet moon, in to the sea? 

Turquoise and beryl and rings of gold, 

Clear moon, dear moon, ne’er to be sold? 

Roses and lilies, romance and love, 

Still moon, chill moon, swinging above? 

Slender your feet as a white birds throat, 

High moon, shy moon, drifting your boat 

Into the murk of the world awhile, 

Slim moon, dim moon, adding a smile. 

Tender your eyes as a maiden’s kiss, 

Fine moon, wine moon, no one knows this, 

Under the spell of your witchery, 

Dream moon, cream moon, first he kissed me.

Eclogue VI – Virgil

First my Thalia stooped in sportive mood 

To Syracusan strains, nor blushed within 

The woods to house her. When I sought to tell 

Of battles and of kings, the Cynthian god 

Plucked at mine ear and warned me: ‘Tityrus, 

Beseems a shepherd-wight to feed fat sheep, 

But sing a slender song.’ Now, Varus, I- 

For lack there will not who would laud thy deeds, 

And treat of dolorous wars- will rather tune 

To the slim oaten reed my silvan lay. 

I sing but as vouchsafed me; yet even this 

If, if but one with ravished eyes should read, 

Of thee, O Varus, shall our tamarisks 

And all the woodland ring; nor can there be 

A page more dear to Phoebus, than the page 

Where, foremost writ, the name of Varus stands. 

Speed ye, Pierian Maids! Within a cave 

Young Chromis and Mnasyllos chanced to see 

Silenus sleeping, flushed, as was his wont, 

With wine of yesterday. Not far aloof, 

Slipped from his head, the garlands lay, and there 

By its worn handle hung a ponderous cup. 

Approaching- for the old man many a time 

Had balked them both of a long hoped-for song- 

Garlands to fetters turned, they bind him fast. 

Then Aegle, fairest of the Naiad-band, 

Aegle came up to the half-frightened boys, 

Came, and, as now with open eyes he lay, 

With juice of blood-red mulberries smeared him o’er, 

Both brow and temples. Laughing at their guile, 

And crying, ‘Why tie the fetters? loose me, boys; 

Enough for you to think you had the power; 

Now list the songs you wish for- songs for you, 

Another meed for her’ -forthwith began. 

Then might you see the wild things of the wood, 

With Fauns in sportive frolic beat the time, 

And stubborn oaks their branchy summits bow. 

Not Phoebus doth the rude Parnassian crag 

So ravish, nor Orpheus so entrance the heights 

Of Rhodope or Ismarus: for he sang 

How through the mighty void the seeds were driven 

Of earth, air, ocean, and of liquid fire, 

How all that is from these beginnings grew, 

And the young world itself took solid shape, 

Then ‘gan its crust to harden, and in the deep 

Shut Nereus off, and mould the forms of things 

Little by little; and how the earth amazed 

Beheld the new sun shining, and the showers 

Fall, as the clouds soared higher, what time the woods 

‘Gan first to rise, and living things to roam 

Scattered among the hills that knew them not. 

Then sang he of the stones by Pyrrha cast, 

Of Saturn’s reign, and of Prometheus’ theft, 

And the Caucasian birds, and told withal 

Nigh to what fountain by his comrades left 

The mariners cried on Hylas till the shore 

‘Then Re-echoed ‘Hylas, Hylas! soothed 

Pasiphae with the love of her white bull- 

Happy if cattle-kind had never been!- 

O ill-starred maid, what frenzy caught thy soul 

The daughters too of Proetus filled the fields 

With their feigned lowings, yet no one of them 

Of such unhallowed union e’er was fain 

As with a beast to mate, though many a time 

On her smooth forehead she had sought for horns, 

And for her neck had feared the galling plough. 

O ill-starred maid! thou roamest now the hills, 

While on soft hyacinths he, his snowy side 

Reposing, under some dark ilex now 

Chews the pale herbage, or some heifer tracks 

Amid the crowding herd. Now close, ye Nymphs, 

Ye Nymphs of Dicte, close the forest-glades, 

If haply there may chance upon mine eyes 

The white bull’s wandering foot-prints: him belike 

Following the herd, or by green pasture lured, 

Some kine may guide to the Gortynian stalls. 

Then sings he of the maid so wonder-struck 

With the apples of the Hesperids, and then 

With moss-bound, bitter bark rings round the forms 

Of Phaethon’s fair sisters, from the ground 

Up-towering into poplars. Next he sings 

Of Gallus wandering by Permessus’ stream, 

And by a sister of the Muses led 

To the Aonian mountains, and how all 

The choir of Phoebus rose to greet him; how 

The shepherd Linus, singer of songs divine, 

Brow-bound with flowers and bitter parsley, spake: 

‘These reeds the Muses give thee, take them thou, 

Erst to the aged bard of Ascra given, 

Wherewith in singing he was wont to draw 

Time-rooted ash-trees from the mountain heights. 

With these the birth of the Grynean grove 

Be voiced by thee, that of no grove beside 

Apollo more may boast him.’ Wherefore speak 

Of Scylla, child of Nisus, who, ’tis said, 

Her fair white loins with barking monsters girt 

Vexed the Dulichian ships, and, in the deep 

Swift-eddying whirlpool, with her sea-dogs tore 

The trembling mariners? or how he told 

Of the changed limbs of Tereus- what a feast, 

What gifts, to him by Philomel were given; 

How swift she sought the desert, with what wings 

Hovered in anguish o’er her ancient home? 

All that, of old, Eurotas, happy stream, 

Heard, as Apollo mused upon the lyre, 

And bade his laurels learn, Silenus sang; 

Till from Olympus, loth at his approach, 

Vesper, advancing, bade the shepherds tell 

Their tale of sheep, and pen them in the fold.

Eclogue VII – Virgil

Daphnis beneath a rustling ilex-tree 

Had sat him down; Thyrsis and Corydon 

Had gathered in the flock, Thyrsis the sheep, 

And Corydon the she-goats swollen with milk- 

Both in the flower of age, Arcadians both, 

Ready to sing, and in like strain reply. 

Hither had strayed, while from the frost I fend 

My tender myrtles, the he-goat himself, 

Lord of the flock; when Daphnis I espy! 

Soon as he saw me, ‘Hither haste,’ he cried, 

‘O Meliboeus! goat and kids are safe; 

And, if you have an idle hour to spare, 

Rest here beneath the shade. Hither the steers 

Will through the meadows, of their own free will, 

Untended come to drink. Here Mincius hath 

With tender rushes rimmed his verdant banks, 

And from yon sacred oak with busy hum 

The bees are swarming.’ What was I to do? 

No Phyllis or Alcippe left at home 

Had I, to shelter my new-weaned lambs, 

And no slight matter was a singing-bout 

‘Twixt Corydon and Thyrsis. Howsoe’er, 

I let my business wait upon their sport. 

So they began to sing, voice answering voice 

In strains alternate- for alternate strains 

The Muses then were minded to recall- 

First Corydon, then Thyrsis in reply. 

‘Libethrian Nymphs, who are my heart’s delight, 

Grant me, as doth my Codrus, so to sing- 

Next to Apollo he- or if to this 

We may not all attain, my tuneful pipe 

Here on this sacred pine shall silent hang.’ 

‘Arcadian shepherds, wreathe with ivy-spray 

Your budding poet, so that Codrus burst 

With envy: if he praise beyond my due, 

Then bind my brow with foxglove, lest his tongue 

With evil omen blight the coming bard.’ 

‘This bristling boar’s head, Delian Maid, to thee, 

With branching antlers of a sprightly stag, 

Young Micon offers: if his luck but hold, 

Full-length in polished marble, ankle-bound 

With purple buskin, shall thy statue stand.’ 

‘A bowl of milk, Priapus, and these cakes, 

Yearly, it is enough for thee to claim; 

Thou art the guardian of a poor man’s plot. 

Wrought for a while in marble, if the flock 

At lambing time be filled,stand there in gold.’ 

‘Daughter of Nereus, Galatea mine, 

Sweeter than Hybla-thyme, more white than swans, 

Fairer than ivy pale, soon as the steers 

Shall from their pasture to the stalls repair, 

If aught for Corydon thou carest, come.’ 

‘Now may I seem more bitter to your taste 

Than herb Sardinian, rougher than the broom, 

More worthless than strewn sea-weed, if to-day 

Hath not a year out-lasted! Fie for shame! 

Go home, my cattle, from your grazing go!’ 

‘Ye mossy springs, and grass more soft than sleep, 

And arbute green with thin shade sheltering you, 

Ward off the solstice from my flock, for now 

Comes on the burning summer, now the buds 

Upon the limber vine-shoot ‘gin to swell.’ 

‘Here is a hearth, and resinous logs, here fire 

Unstinted, and doors black with ceaseless smoke. 

Here heed we Boreas’ icy breath as much 

As the wolf heeds the number of the flock, 

Or furious rivers their restraining banks.’ 

‘The junipers and prickly chestnuts stand, 

And ‘neath each tree lie strewn their several fruits, 

Now the whole world is smiling, but if fair 

Alexis from these hill-slopes should away, 

Even the rivers you would ; see run dry.’ 

‘The field is parched, the grass-blades thirst to death 

In the faint air; Liber hath grudged the hills 

His vine’s o’er-shadowing: should my Phyllis come, 

Green will be all the grove, and Jupiter 

Descend in floods of fertilizing rain.’ 

‘The poplar doth Alcides hold most dear, 

The vine Iacchus, Phoebus his own bays, 

And Venus fair the myrtle: therewithal 

Phyllis doth hazels love, and while she loves, 

Myrtle nor bay the hazel shall out-vie.’ 

‘Ash in the forest is most beautiful, 

Pine in the garden, poplar by the stream, 

Fir on the mountain-height; but if more oft 

Thou’ldst come to me, fair Lycidas, to thee 

Both forest-ash, and garden-pine should bow.’ 

These I remember, and how Thyrsis strove 

For victory in vain. From that time forth 

Is Corydon still Corydon with us.

Eclogue VIII – Virgil

Of Damon and Alphesiboeus now, 

Those shepherd-singers at whose rival strains 

The heifer wondering forgot to graze, 

The lynx stood awe-struck, and the flowing streams, 

Unwonted loiterers, stayed their course to hear- 

How Damon and Alphesiboeus sang 

Their pastoral ditties, will I tell the tale. 

Thou, whether broad Timavus’ rocky banks 

Thou now art passing, or dost skirt the shore 

Of the Illyrian main,- will ever dawn 

That day when I thy deeds may celebrate, 

Ever that day when through the whole wide world 

I may renown thy verse- that verse alone 

Of Sophoclean buskin worthy found? 

With thee began, to thee shall end, the strain. 

Take thou these songs that owe their birth to thee, 

And deign around thy temples to let creep 

This ivy-chaplet ‘twixt the conquering bays. 

Scarce had night’s chilly shade forsook the sky 

What time to nibbling sheep the dewy grass 

Tastes sweetest, when, on his smooth shepherd-staff 

Of olive leaning, Damon thus began. 

‘Rise, Lucifer, and, heralding the light, 

Bring in the genial day, while I make moan 

Fooled by vain passion for a faithless bride, 

For Nysa, and with this my dying breath 

Call on the gods, though little it bestead- 

The gods who heard her vows and heeded not. 

‘Begin, my flute, with me Maenalian lays. 

Ever hath Maenalus his murmuring groves 

And whispering pines, and ever hears the songs 

Of love-lorn shepherds, and of Pan, who first 

Brooked not the tuneful reed should idle lie. 

‘Begin, my flute, with me Maenalian lays. 

Nysa to Mopsus given! what may not then 

We lovers look for? soon shall we see mate 

Griffins with mares, and in the coming age 

Shy deer and hounds together come to drink. 

‘Begin, my flute, with me Maenalian lays. 

Now, Mopsus, cut new torches, for they bring 

Your bride along; now, bridegroom, scatter nuts: 

Forsaking Oeta mounts the evening star! 

‘Begin, my flute, with me Maenalian lays. 

O worthy of thy mate, while all men else 

Thou scornest, and with loathing dost behold 

My shepherd’s pipe, my goats, my shaggy brow, 

And untrimmed beard, nor deem’st that any god 

For mortal doings hath regard or care. 

‘Begin, my flute, with me Maenalian lays. 

Once with your mother, in our orchard-garth, 

A little maid I saw you- I your guide- 

Plucking the dewy apples. My twelfth year 

I scarce had entered, and could barely reach 

The brittle boughs. I looked, and I was lost; 

A sudden frenzy swept my wits away. 

‘Begin, my flute, with me Maenalian lays. 

Now know I what Love is: ‘mid savage rocks 

Tmaros or Rhodope brought forth the boy, 

Or Garamantes in earth’s utmost bounds- 

No kin of ours, nor of our blood begot. 

‘Begin, my flute, with me Maenalian lays. 

Fierce Love it was once steeled a mother’s heart 

With her own offspring’s blood her hands to imbrue: 

Mother, thou too wert cruel; say wert thou 

More cruel, mother, or more ruthless he? 

Ruthless the boy, thou, mother, cruel too. 

‘Begin, my flute, with me Maenalian lays. 

Now let the wolf turn tail and fly the sheep, 

Tough oaks bear golden apples, alder-trees 

Bloom with narcissus-flower, the tamarisk 

Sweat with rich amber, and the screech-owl vie 

In singing with the swan: let Tityrus 

Be Orpheus, Orpheus in the forest-glade, 

Arion ‘mid his dolphins on the deep. 

‘Begin, my flute, with me Maenalian lays. 

Yea, be the whole earth to mid-ocean turned! 

Farewell, ye woodlands I from the tall peak 

Of yon aerial rock will headlong plunge 

Into the billows: this my latest gift, 

From dying lips bequeathed thee, see thou keep. 

Cease now, my flute, now cease Maenalian lays.’ 

Thus Damon: but do ye, Pierian Maids- 

We cannot all do all things- tell me how 

Alphesiboeus to his strain replied. 

‘Bring water, and with soft wool-fillet bind 

These altars round about, and burn thereon 

Rich vervain and male frankincense, that I 

May strive with magic spells to turn astray 

My lover’s saner senses, whereunto 

There lacketh nothing save the power of song. 

‘Draw from the town, my songs, draw Daphnis home. 

Songs can the very moon draw down from heaven 

Circe with singing changed from human form 

The comrades of Ulysses, and by song 

Is the cold meadow-snake, asunder burst. 

‘Draw from the town, my songs, draw Daphnis home. 

These triple threads of threefold colour first 

I twine about thee, and three times withal 

Around these altars do thine image bear: 

Uneven numbers are the god’s delight. 

‘Draw from the town, my songs, draw Daphnis home. 

Now, Amaryllis, ply in triple knots 

The threefold colours; ply them fast, and say 

This is the chain of Venus that I ply. 

‘Draw from the town, my songs, draw Daphnis home. 

As by the kindling of the self-same fire 

Harder this clay, this wax the softer grows, 

So by my love may Daphnis; sprinkle meal, 

And with bitumen burn the brittle bays. 

Me Daphnis with his cruelty doth burn, 

I to melt cruel Daphnis burn this bay. 

‘Draw from the town, my songs, draw Daphnis home. 

As when some heifer, seeking for her steer 

Through woodland and deep grove, sinks wearied out 

On the green sedge beside a stream, love-lorn, 

Nor marks the gathering night that calls her home- 

As pines that heifer, with such love as hers 

May Daphnis pine, and I not care to heal. 

‘Draw from the town, my songs, draw Daphnis home. 

These relics once, dear pledges of himself, 

The traitor left me, which, O earth, to thee 

Here on this very threshold I commit- 

Pledges that bind him to redeem the debt. 

‘Draw from the town, my songs, draw Daphnis home. 

These herbs of bane to me did Moeris give, 

In Pontus culled, where baneful herbs abound. 

With these full oft have I seen Moeris change 

To a wolf’s form, and hide him in the woods, 

Oft summon spirits from the tomb’s recess, 

And to new fields transport the standing corn. 

‘Draw from the town, my songs, draw Daphnis home. 

Take ashes, Amaryllis, fetch them forth, 

And o’er your head into the running brook 

Fling them, nor look behind: with these will 

Upon the heart of Daphnis make essay. 

Nothing for gods, nothing for songs cares he. 

‘Draw from the town, my songs, draw Daphnis home. 

Look, look I the very embers of themselves 

Have caught the altar with a flickering flame, 

While I delay to fetch them: may the sign 

Prove lucky! something it must mean, for sure, 

And Hylax on the threshold ‘gins to bark! 

May we believe it, or are lovers still 

By their own fancies fooled? 

Give o’er, my songs, 

Daphnis is coming from the town, give o’er.’

Eclogue IX – Virgil


Say whither, Moeris?- Make you for the town, 

Or on what errand bent? 
Moeris. O Lycidas, 

We have lived to see, what never yet we feared, 

An interloper own our little farm, 

And say, ‘Be off, you former husbandmen! 

These fields are mine.’ Now, cowed and out of heart, 

Since Fortune turns the whole world upside down, 

We are taking him- ill luck go with the same!-‘ 

These kids you see. 

But surely I had heard 

That where the hills first draw from off the plain, 

And the high ridge with gentle slope descends, 

Down to the brook-side and the broken crests 

Of yonder veteran beeches, all the land 

Was by the songs of your Menalcas saved. 

Heard it you had, and so the rumour ran, 

But ‘mid the clash of arms, my Lycidas, 

Our songs avail no more than, as ’tis said, 

Doves of Dodona when an eagle comes. 

Nay, had I not, from hollow ilex-bole 

Warned by a raven on the left, cut short 

The rising feud, nor I, your Moeris here, 

No, nor Menalcas, were alive to-day. 

Alack! could any of so foul a crime 

Be guilty? Ah! how nearly, thyself, 

Reft was the solace that we had in thee, 

Menalcas! Who then of the Nymphs had sung, 

Or who with flowering herbs bestrewn the ground, 

And o’er the fountains drawn a leafy veil?- 

Who sung the stave I filched from you that day 

To Amaryllis wending, our hearts’ joy?- 

‘While I am gone, ’tis but a little way, 

Feed, Tityrus, my goats, and, having fed, 

Drive to the drinking-pool, and, as you drive, 

Beware the he-goat; with his horn he butts.’ 

Ay, or to Varus that half-finished lay, 

‘Varus, thy name, so still our Mantua live- 

Mantua to poor Cremona all too near- 

Shall singing swans bear upward to the stars.’ 

So may your swarms Cyrnean yew-trees shun, 

Your kine with cytisus their udders swell, 

Begin, if aught you have. The Muses made 

Me too a singer; I too have sung; the swains 

Call me a poet, but I believe them not: 

For naught of mine, or worthy Varius yet 

Or Cinna deem I, but account myself 

A cackling goose among melodious swans. 

‘Twas in my thought to do so, Lycidas; 

Even now was I revolving silently 

If this I could recall- no paltry song: 

‘Come, Galatea, what pleasure is ‘t to play 

Amid the waves? Here glows the Spring, here earth 

Beside the streams pours forth a thousand flowers; 

Here the white poplar bends above the cave, 

And the lithe vine weaves shadowy covert: come, 

Leave the mad waves to beat upon the shore.’ 

What of the strain I heard you singing once 

On a clear night alone? the notes I still 

Remember, could I but recall the words. 

‘Why, Daphnis, upward gazing, do you mark 

The ancient risings of the Signs? for look 

Where Dionean Caesar’s star comes forth 

In heaven, to gladden all the fields with corn, 

And to the grape upon the sunny slopes 

Her colour bring! Now, the pears; 

So shall your children’s children pluck their fruit. 

Time carries all things, even our wits, away. 

Oft, as a boy, I sang the sun to rest, 

But all those songs are from my memory fled, 

And even his voice is failing Moeris now; 

The wolves eyed Moeris first: but at your wish 

Menalcas will repeat them oft enow. 

Your pleas but linger out my heart’s desire: 

Now all the deep is into silence hushed, 

And all the murmuring breezes sunk to sleep. 

We are half-way thither, for Bianor’s tomb 

Begins to show: here, Moeris, where the hinds 

Are lopping the thick leafage, let us sing. 

Set down the kids, yet shall we reach the town; 

Or, if we fear the night may gather rain 

Ere we arrive, then singing let us go, 

Our way to lighten; and, that we may thus 

Go singing, I will case you of this load. 

Cease, boy, and get we to the work in hand: 

We shall sing better when himself is come

 The Truth About Santa -Roann Mendriq

T’was days before Christmas, the world was a mess; 

Children were doubting, (mine too, must confess!) 

They wanted to know now, how Santa could be; 

all over the world, in one night, you see? 
So, I sat mine down gently – it seemed the right time, 

to tell him the truth, with reason…and rhyme! 

Of course, Santa is real! He did live long ago, 

But not like you know him, to him there was more.. 
He was an old, holy priest, in a sleepy old town, 

Who smiled with his eyes, and never did frown; 

He was called Nicholas and was named a saint, 

because of his kindness, which had no restraint. 
He didn’t fly through the sky, wearing bright red, 

with black shiny boots, and a bell on his head! 

He didn’t have reindeer, pulling his sleigh, 

He carried his presents, the old fashioned way! 
Not as plump as a pudding, he was poor as could be; 

But he loved giving gifts, he gave them happily. 

He gave them in secret, not with a great noise; 

He gave them with care, to good girls and boys. 
Stockings and boots, were kept at the doors, 

Good Nicholas filled them, with God only knows! 

Coins for hot dinners, and cakes for the small ones, 

Warm dresses for daughters, warm cloaks for the sons!
Now, you tell me children, you make the choice, 

Who is Santa Claus? Tell me with one voice! 

Is it that plump, jolly fellow, who goes “HO, HO, HO! ” 

Who delivers x-boxes, right at the front door? 
Or is it that ancient old priest, who was holy and wise, 

Who helped all the poor, with love in his eyes? 

Who might’ve been thin, and wore tattered clothes, 

Who is the Saint here, whom do you suppose? 
And children know truth, when told from the heart, 

For they are truth-tellers, right from the start! 

They smiled with pure wonder, they laughed with pure bliss, 

They were right all along! Santa was St.Nicholas! 
He wasn’t a myth, a fable, a lie, 

A story that grown-ups, dislike to deny! 

He is as real as you, and as you! and as me! 

Celebrating the ChristChild for all eternity! 
For the true gifts of Christmas, don’t ever break, 

They never cause tears, nor any heartache; 

They are Good-will and Love, and true Peace and Joy 

St.Nicholas brings them, for the small Birthday-boy!

Anxiety Of A Young Lady To Get Married – Confucius

Ripe, the plums fall from the bough; 

Only seven-tenths left there now! 

Ye whose hearts on me are set, 

Now the time is fortunate! 
Ripe, the plums fall from the bough; 

Only three-tenths left there now! 

Ye who wish my love to gain, 

Will not now apply in vain! 
No more plums upon the bough! 

All are in my basket now! 

Ye who me with ardor seek, 

Need the word but freely speak!

Hospitality – Confucius

A few gourd leaves that waved about 

Cut down and boiled;–the feast how spare! 

But the good host his spirits takes, 

Pours out a cup, and proves them rare. 
A single rabbit on the mat, 

Or baked, or roast:–how small the feast! 

But the good host his spirits takes, 

And fills the cup of every guest. 
A single rabbit on the mat, 

Roasted or broiled:–how poor the meal! 

But the guests from the spirit vase 

Fill their host’s cup, and drink his weal. 
A single rabbit on the mat, 

Roasted or baked:–no feast we think! 

But from the spirit vase they take, 

Both host and guests, and joyous drink.

In Praise Of Some Lady – Confucius

There by his side in chariot rideth she, 

As lovely flower of the hibiscus tree, 

So fair her face; and when about they wheel, 

Her girdle gems of Ken themselves reveal. 

For beauty all the House of Keang have fame; 

Its eldest daughter–she beseems her name. 
There on the path, close by him, walketh she, 

Bright as the blossom of hibiscus tree, 

And fair her face; and when around they flit, 

Her girdle gems a tinkling sound emit. 

Among the Keang she has distinguished place, 

For virtuous fame renowned, and peerless grace.

A Wife Mourns For Her Husband – Confucius

The dolichos grows and covers the thorn, 

O’er the waste is the dragon-plant creeping. 

The man of my heart is away and I mourn– 

What home have I, lonely and weeping? 
Covering the jujubes the dolichos grows, 

The graves many dragon-plants cover; 

But where is the man on whose breast I’d repose? 

No home have I, having no lover! 
Fair to see was the pillow of horn, 

And fair the bed-chamber’s adorning; 

But the man of my heart is not here, and I mourn 

All alone, and wait for the morning. 
While the long days of summer pass over my head, 

And long winter nights leave their traces, 

I’m alone! Till a hundred of years shall have fled, 

And then I shall meet his embraces. 
Through the long winter nights I am burdened with fears, 

Through the long summer days I am lonely; 

But when time shall have counted its hundreds of years

I then shall be his–and his only!

The Hymn Of The Wiltshire Laborers – Charles Dickens

O God! who by Thy prophet’s hand 

Didst smite the rocky brake, 

Whence water came, at Thy command, 

Thy people’s thirst to slake; 

Strike, now, upon this granite wall, 

Stern, obdurate, and high; 

And let some drops of pity fall 

For us who starve and die! 
The God who took a little child 

And set him in the midst, 

And promised him His mercy mild, 

As, by Thy Son, Thou didst: 

Look down upon our children dear, 

So gaunt, so cold, so spare, 

And let their images appear 

Where lords and gentry are! 
O God! teach them to feel how we, 

When our poor infants droop, 

Are weakened in our trust in Thee, 

And how our spirits stoop; 

For, in Thy rest, so bright and fair, 

All tears and sorrows sleep: 

And their young looks, so full of care, 

Would make Thine angels weep! 
The God who with His finger drew 

The judgment coming on, 

Write, for these men, what must ensue, 

Ere many years be gone! 

O God! whose bow is in the sky, 

Let them not brave and dare, 

Until they look (too late) on high, 

And see an Arrow there! 
O God, remind them! In the bread 

They break upon the knee, 

These sacred words may yet be read, 

‘In memory of Me!’ 

O God! remind them of His sweet 

Compassion for the poor, 

And how He gave them Bread to eat, 

And went from door to door!

Squire Norton’s Song – Charles Dickens

The child and the old man sat alone 

In the quiet, peaceful shade 

Of the old green boughs, that had richly grown 

In the deep, thick forest glade. 

It was a soft and pleasant sound, 

That rustling of the oak; 

And the gentle breeze played lightly round 

As thus the fair boy spoke:- 
‘Dear father, what can honor be, 

Of which I hear men rave? 

Field, cell and cloister, land and sea, 

The tempest and the grave:- 

It lives in all, ’tis sought in each, 

‘Tis never heard or seen: 

Now tell me, father, I beseech, 

What can this honor mean?’ 
‘It is a name – a name, my child – 

It lived in other days, 

When men were rude, their passions wild, 

Their sport, thick battle-frays. 

When, in armor bright, the warrior bold 

Knelt to his lady’s eyes: 

Beneath the abbey pavement old 

That warrior’s dust now lies. 
‘The iron hearts of that old day 

Have mouldered in the grave; 

And chivalry has passed away, 

With knights so true and brave; 

The honor, which to them was life, 

Throbs in no bosom now; 

It only gilds the gambler’s strife, 

Or decks the worthless vow.’

Little Nell’s Funeral – Charles Dickens

And now the bell, – the bell 

She had so often heard by night and day 

And listened to with solemn pleasure, 

E’en as a living voice, – 

Rung its remorseless toll for her, 

So young, so beautiful, so good. 
Decrepit age, and vigorous life, 

And blooming youth, and helpless infancy, 

Poured forth, – on crutches, in the pride of strength 

And health, in the full blush 

Of promise, the mere dawn of life, – 

To gather round her tomb. Old men were there, 

Whose eyes were dim 

And senses failing, – 

Grandames, who might have died ten years ago, 

And still been old, – the deaf, the blind, the lame, 

The palsied, 

The living dead in many shapes and forms, 

To see the closing of this early grave. 

What was the death it would shut in, 

To that which still could crawl and keep above it! 
Along the crowded path they bore her now; 

Pure as the new fallen snow 

That covered it; whose day on earth 

Had been as fleeting. 

Under that porch, where she had sat when Heaven 

In mercy brought her to that peaceful spot, 

She passed again, and the old church 

Received her in its quiet shade. 
They carried her to one old nook, 

Where she had many and many a time sat musing, 

And laid their burden softly on the pavement. 

The light streamed on it through 

The colored window, – a window where the boughs 

Of trees were ever rustling 

In the summer, and where the birds 

Sang sweetly all day long.

Gabriel’s Grub Song – Charles Dickens

Brave lodgings for one, brave lodgings for one, 

A few feet of cold earth, when life is done; 

A stone at the head, a stone at the feet; 

A rich, juicy meal for the worms to eat; 

Rank grass overhead, and damp clay around, 

Brave lodging for one, these, in holy ground!

A Child’s Hymn – Charles Dickens

Hear my prayer, O heavenly Father, 

Ere I lay me down to sleep; 

Bid Thy angels, pure and holy, 

Round my bed their vigil keep. 
My sins are heavy, but Thy mercy 

Far outweighs them, every one; 

Down before Thy cross I cast them, 

Trusting in Thy help alone. 
Keep me through this night of peril 

Underneath its boundless shade; 

Take me to Thy rest, I pray Thee, 

When my pilgrimage is made. 
None shall measure out Thy patience 

By the span of human thought; 

None shall bound the tender mercies 

Which Thy Holy Son has bought. 
Pardon all my past transgressions, 

Give me strength for days to come; 

Guide and guard me with Thy blessing 

Till Thy angels bid me home.

The Self Forgets Itself – Kabir

The self forgets itself 

as a frantic dog in a glass temple 

barks himself to death; 

as a lion, seeing a form in the well, 

leaps on the image; 

as a rutting elephant sticks his tusk 

in a crystal boulder. 

The monkey has his fistful of sweets 

and won’t let go. So 

from house to house 

he gibbers. 

Kabir says, parrot-on-a-pole: 

who has caught you?

There’s A Moon Inside My Body – Kabir 

THE moon shines in my body, but my blind eyes cannot see it: 

The moon is within me, and so is the sun. 

The unstruck drum of Eternity is sounded within me; but my deaf ears cannot hear it. 
So long as man clamours for the I and the Mine, his works are as naught: 

When all love of the I and the Mine is dead, then the work of the Lord is done. 

For work has no other aim than the getting of knowledge: 

When that comes, then work is put away. 
The flower blooms for the fruit: when the fruit comes, the flower withers. 

The musk is in the deer, but it seeks it not within itself: it wanders in quest of grass.

Where Spring, The Lord Of The Seasons – Kabir

Where Spring, the lord of the seasons, reigneth, 

there the Unstruck Music sounds of itself, 

There the streams of light flow in all directions; 

Few are the men who can cross to that shore! 
There, where millions of Krishnas stand with hands folded, 

Where millions of Vishnus bow their heads, 

Where millions of Brahmas are reading the Vedas, 

Where millions of Shivas are lost in contemplation, 

Where millions of Indras dwell in the sky, 

Where the demi-gods and the munis are unnumbered, 

Where millions of Saraswatis, Goddess of Music, play on the veena 

There is my Lord self-revealed: 

and the scent of sandal and flowers dwells in those deeps.

A Parable – Johann Wolfgang von Goethe

I PICKED a rustic nosegay lately, 

And bore it homewards, musing greatly; 

When, heated by my hand, I found 

The heads all drooping tow’rd the ground. 

I plac’d them in a well-cool’d glass, 

And what a wonder came to pass 

The heads soon raised themselves once more. 

The stalks were blooming as before, 

And all were in as good a case 

As when they left their native place. 

So felt I, when I wond’ring heard 

My song to foreign tongues transferr’d.

Book Of Proverbs – Johann Wolfgang von Goethe

CALL on the present day and night for nought, 

Save what by yesterday was brought. 


THE sea is flowing ever, 

The land retains it never. 


BE stirring, man, while yet the day is clear; 

The night when none can work fast Draweth near. 


WHEN the heavy-laden sigh, 

Deeming help and hope gone by, 

Oft, with healing power is heard, 

Comfort-fraught, a kindly word. 


How vast is mine inheritance, how glorious and sublime! 

For time mine own possession is, the land I till is time! 


UNWARY saith,–ne’er lived a man more true; 

The deepest heart, the highest head he knew,– 

“In ev’ry place and time thou’lt find availing 

Uprightness, judgment, kindliness unfailing.” 


THOUGH the bards whom the Orient sun bath bless’d 

Are greater than we who dwell in the west, 

Yet in hatred of those whom our equals we find. 

In this we’re not in the least behind. 

WOULD we let our envy burst, 

Feed its hunger fully first! 

To keep our proper place, 

We’ll show our bristles more; 

With hawks men all things chase, 

Except the savage boar. 


BY those who themselves more bravely have fought 

A hero’s praise will be joyfully told. 

The worth of man can only be taught 

By those who have suffer’d both heat and cold. 


“WHEREFORE is truth so far from our eyes, 

Buried as though in a distant land?” 

None at the proper moment are wise! 
Could they properly understand, 

Truth would appear in her own sweet guise, 

Beauteous, gentle, and close at hand. 


WHY these inquiries make, 

Where charity may flow? 

Cast in the flood thy cake,– 

Its eater, who will know? 


ONCE when I a spider had kill’d, 

Then methought: wast right or wrong? 

That we both to these times should belong, 

This had God in His goodness willed. 


MOTLEY this congregation is, for, lo! 

At the communion kneel both friend and foe. 


IF the country I’m to show, 

Thou must on the housetop go. 


A MAN with households twain 

Ne’er finds attention meet, 

A house wherein two women reign 

Is ne’er kept clean and neat. 


BLESS, thou dread Creator, 

Bless this humble fane; 

Man may build them greater,– 

More they’ll not contain. 


LET this house’s glory rise, 

Handed to far ages down, 

And the son his honour prize. 

As the father his renown. 


O’ER the Mediterranean sea 

Proudly hath the Orient sprung; 

Who loves Hafis and knows him, he 

Knows what Caldron hath sung. 


IF the ass that bore the Saviour 

Were to Mecca driven, he 

Would not alter, but would be 

Still an ass in his behavior. 


THE flood of passion storms with fruitless strife 

‘Gainst the unvanquished solid land.– 

It throws poetic pearls upon the strand, 

And thus is gain’d the prize of life. 


WHEN so many minstrels there are, 

How it pains me, alas, to know it! 

Who from the earth drives poetry far? 

Who but the poet!

The Candle – Allama Muhammad Iqbal

O Candle! I am also an afflicted person in the world assembly 

Constant complaint is my lot in the manner of the rue 

Love gave the warmth of internal pathos to you 

It made me the florist selling blood-mixed tears 

Whether you be the candle of a celebrating assembly or one at the grave 

In every condition associated with the tears of sorrow you remain 

Your eye views all with equity like the Secret’s Lovers 

My eye is the pride of the tumult of discrimination 

Your illumination is alike in the Ka’bah and the temple 

I am entangled in the temple and the Haram’s discrimination 

Your black smoke contains the sigh’s elegance 

Is some heart hidden in the place of your manifestation? 

You burn with pathos due to distance from Tajalli’s Light

Your pathos the callous ones consider your light 

Though you are burning you are unaware of it all 

You see but do not encompass the internal pathos 

I quiver like mercury with the excitement of vexation 

As well I am aware of vexations of the restless heart 

This was also the elegance of some Beloved 

Which gave me perception of my own pathos 

This cognition of mine keeps me restless 

Innumerable fire temples are asleep in this spark 

Discrimination between high and low is created by this alone! 

Fragrance in flower, ecstasy in wine is created by this alone! 

Garden, nightingale, flower, fragrance this Cognition is 

Root of the struggle of ‘I and you’ this Cognition is 

At creation’s dawn as Beauty became the abode of Love 

The sound of “Kun” taught warmth to the spirit of Love 

The command came Beauty of Kun’s garden to witness

With one eye a thousand dreadful dreams to witness 

Do not ask me of the nature of the veil of being 

The eve of separation was the dawn of my being 

Gone are the days when unaware of imprisonment I was 

That my abode the adornment of the tree of Tur was 

I am a prisoner but consider the cage to be a garden 

This exile’s hovel of sorrow I consider the homeland 

Memories of the homeland a needless melancholy became 

Now the desire for sight, now Longing for search became 

O Candle! Look at the excessive illusion of thought 

Look at the end of the one worshipped by celestial denizens 

Theme of separation I am, the exalted one I am 

Design of the Will of the Universe’s Lord I am 

He desired my display as He designed me 

When at the head of Existence’ Divan He wrote me 

The pearl likes living in a handful of dust 

Style may be dull the subject is excellent 

Not seeing it rightly is the fault of shortsighted perception 

The universe is the show of effulgence of taste for Cognizance 

This network of time and space is the scaling ladder of the Universe 

It is the necklace of the neck of Eternal BeautyI 

have lost the way, Longing for the goal I am 

O Candle! Captive of perception’s illusion I am 

I am the hunter as well as the circle of tyranny’s net! 

I am the Haram’s roof as well as the bird on Haram’s roofAm I the Beauty or head to foot the melting love am I? 

It is not clear whether the beloved or the Lover am I? 

am afraid the old secret may come up to my lips again 

Lest story of suffering on the Cross may come up again.

The Bird’s Complaint – Allama Muhammad Iqbal

I am constantly reminded of the bygone times 

Those garden’s springs, those chorus of chimes 
Gone are the freedoms of our own nests 

Where we could come and go at our own pleasure 
My heart aches the moment I think 

Of the buds’ smile at the dew’s tears 
That beautiful figure, that Kamini’s form 

Which source of happiness in my nest did form 
I do not hear those lovely sounds in my cage now 

May it happen that my freedom be in my own hands now! 
How unfortunate I am, tantalized for my abode I am 

My companions are in the home‐land, in the prison I am 
Spring has arrived, the flower buds are laughing 

On my misfortune in this dark house I am wailing 
God, To whom should I relate my tale of woe? 

I fear lest I die in this cage with this woe (grief) ! 
Since separation from the garden the condition of my heart is such 

My heart is waxing the grief, my grief is waxing the heart 

O Listeners, considering this music do not be happy 

This call is the wailing of my wounded heart 
O the one who confined me make me free 

A silent prisoner I am, earn my blessings free

I Desire – Allama Muhammad Iqbal

I want to have the extremes of your Love, 

See, how silly am I, wishing for unachievable. 
I don’t care if you maltreat me or promise to unveil your beauty, 

I just want something unbearable to test my fortitude 
Let the God fearing people be dwelling in the paradise, 

For, instead I want to be face to face with you. 

(I don’t want to go to paradise but want to observe the Divine Beauty) 
O fellows, I am here for a few moments, as a gust, 

Like morning star I will fade and vanish in a few moments. 
I disclosed the secret in public, 

I need to be punished for being so rude.

A Spider And A Fly – Allama Muhammad Iqbal

One day a spider said to a fly 

‘Though you pass this way daily 
My hut has never been honored by you 

By making a chance visit inside by you 
Though depriving strangers of a visit does not matter 

Evading the near and dear ones does not look good 
My house will be honored by a visit by you 

A ladder is before you if you decide to step in 
Hearing this the fly said to the spider, 

‘Sire, you should entice some simpleton thus 
This fly would never be pulled into your net 

Whoever climbed your net could never step down’ 
The spider said, ‘How strange, you consider me a cheat 

I have never seen a simpleton like you in the world 
I only wanted to entertain you 

I had no personal gain in view 
You have come flying from some unknown distant place 

Resting for a while in my house would not harm you 
Many things in this house are worth your seeing 

Though apparently a humble hut you are seeing 
Dainty drapes are hanging from the doors 

And I have decorated the walls with mirrors 
Beddings are available for guests’ comforts 

Not to everyone’s lot do fall these comforts’. 
The fly said, ‘All this may very well be 

But do not expect me to enter your house 
‘May God protect me from these soft beds 

Once asleep in them getting up again is impossible’ 

The spider spoke to itself on hearing this talk 

‘How to trap it? This wretched fellow is clever 
Many desires are fulfilled with flattery in the world 

All in the world are enslaved with flattery’ 
Thinking this the spider spoke to the fly thus! 

‘Madam, God has bestowed great honors on you! 
Everyone loves your beautiful face 

Even if someone sees you for the first time 
Your eyes look like clusters of glittering diamonds 

God has adorned your beautiful head with a plume 
This beauty, this dress, this elegance, this neatness! 

And all this is very much enhanced by singing in flight’. 
The fly was touched by this flattery 

And spoke, ‘I do not fear you any more 
I hate the habit of declining requests 

Disappointing somebody is bad indeed’ 
Saying this it flew from its place 

When it got close the spider snapped it 
The spider had been starving for many days 

The fly provided a good leisurely meal

The Sun – Allama Muhammad Iqbal

O Sun! The world’s essence and motivator you are 

The organizer of the book of the world you are 
The splendor of existence has been created by you 

The verdure of the garden of existence depends on you
The spectacle of elements is maintained by you 

The exigency of life in all is maintained by you 
Your appearance confers stability on everything 

Your illumination and concord is completion of life 
You are the sun which establishes light in the world 

Which establishes heart, intellect, essence and wisdom
O Sun! Bestow on us the light of wisdom 

Bestow your luster’s light on the intellect’s eye 
You are the decorator of necessaries of existence’ assemblage 

You are the Yazdan of the denizens of the high and the low 
Your excellence is reflected from every living thing 

The mountain range also shows your elegance 
You are the sustainer of the life of all 

You are the king of the light’s children 
There is no beginning and no end of yours 

Free of limits of time is the light of yours

The Painful Wail – Allama Muhammad Iqbal

Consumed with grief I am, I get relief in no way 

O circumambient waters of the Ganges drown me 
Our land foments excessive mutual enmity 

What unity! Our closeness harbors separation 
Enmity instead of sincerity is outrageous 

Enmity among the same barn’s grains is outrageous 
If the brotherly breeze has not entered in a garden 

No pleasure can be derived from songs in that garden 
Though I exceedingly love the real closeness 

I am upset by the mixing of waves and the shore 
The miraculous poet is like the grain from the barn 

The grain has no existence if there is no barn 
How can beauty unveil itself if no one is anxious for sight 

Lighting of the candle is meaningless if there is no assembly 
Why does the taste for speech not change to silence 

Why does this brilliance not appear out from my mirror 
Alas! My tongue poured its speech down 

When war’s fire had burnt the garden down

Books – Zora Bernice May Cross

Oh! Bury me in books when I am dead, 

Fair quarto leaves of ivory and gold, 

And silk octavos, bound in brown and red, 

That tales of love and chivalry unfold. 

Heap me in volumes of fine vellum wrought, 

Creamed with the close content of silent speech; 

Wrap me in sapphire tapestries of thought 

From some old epic out of common reach. 

I would my shroud were verse-embroidered too— 

Your verse for preference—in starry stitch, 

And powdered o’er with rhymes that poets woo, 

Breathing dream-lyrics in moon-measures rich. 

Night holds me with a horror of the grave 

That knows not poetry, nor song, nor you; 

Nor leaves of love that down the ages weave 

Romance and fire in burnished cloths of blue. 

Oh, bury me in books, and I’ll not mind 

The cold, slow worms that coil around my head; 

Since my lone soul may turn the page and find 

The lines you wrote to me, when I am dead.

An Old-Time Lay – Victor Marie Hugo

Where your brood seven lie, 

Float in calm heavenly, 

Life passing evenly, 

Waterfowl, waterfowl! often I dream 

For a rest 

Like your nest, 

Skirting the stream. 
Shine the sun tearfully 

Ere the clouds clear fully, 

Still you skim cheerfully, 

Swallow, oh! swallow swift! often I sigh 

For a home 

Where you roam 

Nearing the sky! 
Guileless of pondering; 

Swallow-eyes wandering; 

Seeking no fonder ring 

Than the rose-garland Love gives thee apart! 

Grant me soon– 

Blessed boon! 

Home in thy heart!

After The Battle – Victor Marie Hugo

MY father, hero of benignant mien, 

On horseback visited the gory scene, 

After the battle as the evening fell, 

And took with him a trooper loved right well, 

Because of bravery and presence bold. 

The field was covered with the dead, all cold, 

And shades of night were deepening : came a sound, 

Feeble and hoarse, from something on the ground ; 

It was a Spaniard of the vanquished force, 

Who dragged himself with pain beside their course. 

Wounded and bleeding, livid and half dead, 

‘Give me to drink – in pity, drink!’ he said. 

My father, touched, stretched to his follower now 

A flask of rum that from his saddle-bow 

Hung down : ‘The poor soul – give him drink,’ said he 

But while the trooper prompt, obediently 

Stooped towards the other, he of Moorish race 

Pointed a pistol at my father’s face, 

And with a savage oath the trigger drew : 

The hat flew off, a bullet passing through. 

As swerved his charger in a backward stride, 

‘Give him to drink the same,’ my father cried.

A Sunset – Victor Marie Hugo

I love the evenings, passionless and fair, I love the evens, 

Whether old manor-fronts their ray with golden fulgence leavens, 

In numerous leafage bosomed close; 

Whether the mist in reefs of fire extend its reaches sheer, 

Or a hundred sunbeams splinter in an azure atmosphere 

On cloudy archipelagos. 
Oh, gaze ye on the firmament! a hundred clouds in motion, 

Up-piled in the immense sublime beneath the winds’ commotion, 

Their unimagined shapes accord: 

Under their waves at intervals flame a pale levin through, 

As if some giant of the air amid the vapors drew 

A sudden elemental sword. 
The sun at bay with splendid thrusts still keeps the sullen fold; 

And momently at distance sets, as a cupola of gold, 

The thatched roof of a cot a-glance; 

Or on the blurred horizon joins his battle with the haze; 

Or pools the blooming fields about with inter-isolate blaze, 

Great moveless meres of radiance. 
Then mark you how there hangs athwart the firmament’s swept track, 

Yonder a mighty crocodile with vast irradiant back, 

A triple row of pointed teeth? 

Under its burnished belly slips a ray of eventide, 

The flickerings of a hundred glowing clouds in tenebrous side 

With scales of golden mail ensheathe. 
Then mounts a palace, then the air vibrates–the vision flees. 

Confounded to its base, the fearful cloudy edifice 

Ruins immense in mounded wrack; 

Afar the fragments strew the sky, and each envermeiled cone 

Hangeth, peak downward, overhead, like mountains overthrown 

When the earthquake heaves its hugy back. 
These vapors, with their leaden, golden, iron, bronzèd glows, 

Where the hurricane, the waterspout, thunder, and hell repose, 

Muttering hoarse dreams of destined harms,– 

‘Tis God who hangs their multitude amid the skiey deep, 

As a warrior that suspendeth from the roof-tree of his keep 

His dreadful and resounding arms! 
All vanishes! The Sun, from topmost heaven precipitated, 

Like a globe of iron which is tossed back fiery red 

Into the furnace stirred to fume, 

Shocking the cloudy surges, plashed from its impetuous ire, 

Even to the zenith spattereth in a flecking scud of fire 

The vaporous and inflamèd spaume. 
O contemplate the heavens! Whenas the vein-drawn day dies pale, 

In every season, every place, gaze through their every veil? 

With love that has not speech for need! 

Beneath their solemn beauty is a mystery infinite: 

If winter hue them like a pall, or if the summer night 

Fantasy them starre brede.

A Song – Victor Marie Hugo

Sitting at His table one day,

 God and the devil a game did play; 

Hated humanity was at stake; 

Well, the first picked Bonaparte; 

The other drew, and for his part, 

‘Twas Mastai that he did take. 

Impoverished abbey, thin as a sprite! 

Petty prince, small and filled with spite, 

Truly a thoughtless brat! 

Oh what a worthless pot! 

‘Twas God that had the losing lot 

So the devil won them both at that. 
God the Father cried, ‘Take them you! 

You will not know what to do 

With them’; the devil laughed; ‘Good sir- 

That’s where you’re wrong,’ the devil said, 

And of the one a pope he made, 

And of the other an emperor.

School Of Love – Nizar Qabbani

Your love taught me how to grieve, 

And for centuries I needed a woman to make me grieve, 

I needed a woman 

To make me cry on her shoulders like a bird, 

I needed a woman to collect my pieces like broken glass. 

Oh my lady, your love taught me the worst of my habits,

It taught me how to drink coffee a thousand times every night, 

It taught me how to visit doctors and ask soothsayers, 

It taught me to go out to scan the streets, 

To seek your face in the rain and in the lights, 

To chase your shadow in the faces of strangers, 

To hunt your aura even in the newspapers! 

Your love showed me the sadness city, 

Which I have never entered ere you, 

I have never known that the tear is humane, 
And the human without tears is just a memory! 

Your love taught me 

How to draw your face on the walls with chalk like kids, 

It taught me how love can change the map of times, 

It taught me that when I love, 

The earth stands still! 

Your love showed me what hallucination is, 

It taught me how to love you in every little thing, 

In the bare, autumn trees, 

In the falling, yellow leafs, 

In the rain, 

In every cafeteria in which we drank our black coffee, 

My lady, your love taught me to sleep in nameless hotels, 

And to sit by nameless shores, 

It taught me to weep without tears, 

Your love taught me how to grieve, 

And for centuries I needed a woman to make me grieve, 

I needed a woman 

To make me cry on her shoulders like a bird, 

I needed a woman to collect my pieces like broken glass,

Two African Breasts – Nizar Qabbani

Let me find time 

to welcome in this love 

that comes unbid. 

Let me find time 

to memorize 

this face that rises 

out of the trees 

of forgetfulness. 

Give me the time 

to escape this love 

that stops my blood. 

Let me find time 

to recognize your name, 

my name, 

and the place 

where I was born. 

Let me find time 

to know where I shall die 

and how I will revive, as 

a bird inside your eyes. 

Let me find time 

to study the state of winds 

and waves, to learn the maps 

of bays. . . 
Woman, who lodges 

inside the future 

pepper and pomegranate-seeds, 

give me a country 

to make me forget all countries, 

and give me time 

to avoid this Andalusian face, 

this Andalusian voice, 

this Andalusian death 

coming from all directions. 

Let me find time to prophesy 

the coming of the flood. 
Woman, who was inscribed 

in books of magic, 

before you came 

the world was prose. 

Now poetry is born. 

Give me the time to catch 

the colt that runs toward me, 

your breast. 

The dot over a line. 

A bedouin breast, sweet 

as cardamom seeds 

as coffee brewing over embers, 

its form ancient as Damascene brass 

as Egyptian temples. 
Let me find luck 

to pick the fish that swim 

under the waters. 
Your feet on the carpet 

are the shape and stance 

of poetry. 
Let me find the luck 

to know the dividing line 

between the certainty 

of love and heresy. 

Give me the opportunity 

to be convinced I have seen 

the star, and have been spoken to 

by saints. 
Woman, whose thighs are like 

the desert palm where golden 

dates fall from, 

your breasts speak seven tongues 

and I was made to listen 

to them all. 

Give me the chance 

to avoid this storm, 

this sweeping love, 

this wintry air, and to be convinced, 

to blaspheme, and to enter 

the flesh of things. 

Give me the chance 

to be the one 

to walk on water.

When I Love You – Nizar Qabbani

When I love you 

A new language springs up, 

New cities, new countries discovered. 

The hours breathe like puppies, 

Wheat grows between the pages of books, 

Birds fly from your eyes with tiding of honey, 

Caravans ride from your breasts carrying Indian herbs, 

The mangoes fall all around, the forests catch fire 

And Nubian drums beat. 
When I love you your breasts shake off their shame, 

Turn into lightning and thunder, a sword, a sandy storm. 

When I love you the Arab cities leap up and demonstrate 

Against the ages of repression 

And the ages 

Of revenge against the laws of the tribe. 

And I, when I love you, 

March against ugliness, 

Against the kings of salt, 

Against the institutionalization of the desert. 

And I shall continue to love you until the world flood arrives; 

I shall continue to love you untill the world flood arrives.

My Lady – Nizar Qabbani

You were the most important woman in my history 

before the leaving of this year 

you’re now.the most impoertant woman 

after the birth of this year 

you’re a woman i can’t count it with hours and days 

you’re a woman made of the poetry nectar 

and from the Dreams’ Gold 

you’re a woman were living in my body 

before a million years 
My Lady 

the one who was made of Cutton and Clouds 

the one who i can call her a Rain of Jewel 

and the River of Nahound 

and a Row forest 

the one who siwmmes in the water of my heart like a fish 

the one who lives in the eyes like a folk of pigeons 

nothing will change in my emotion 

nor my feelings 

not even in my heart or my faith 

because i’ll stay in the islamic religion 
My Lady 

do not care about the harmony of time 

nor about the name of the years 

you’re a woman and you’ll still as woman 

and in everytime 

i will still Love you 

when the 21 century enter 

and when the 25 century enter 

and when the 29 century enter 

and I will Love you 

when the seas drys 

and the forst burns

A Brief Love Letter – Nizar Qabbani

My darling, I have much to say 

Where o precious one shall I begin ? 

All that is in you is princely 

O you who makes of my words through their meaning 

Cocoons of silk 

These are my songs and this is me 

This short book contains us 

Tomorrow when I return its pages 

A lamp will lament 

A bed will sing 

Its letters from longing will turn green 

Its commas be on the verge of flight 

Do not say: why did this youth 

Speak of me to the winding road and the stream 

The almond tree and the tulip 

So that the world escorts me wherever I go ? 

Why did he sing these songs ? 

Now there is no star 

That is not perfumed with my fragrance 

Tomorrow people will see me in his verse 

A mouth the taste of wine, close-cropped hair 

Ignore what people say 

You will be great only through my great love 

What would the world have been if we had not been 

If your eyes had not been, what would the world have been?

Love – Mewlana Jalaluddin Rumi

Are you fleeing from Love because of a single humiliation? 

What do you know of Love except the name? 

Love has a hundred forms of pride and disdain, 

and is gained by a hundred means of persuasion. 

Since Love is loyal, it purchases one who is loyal: 

it has no interest in a disloyal companion. 

The human being resembles a tree; its root is a covenant with God: 

that root must be cherished with all one’s might. 

A weak covenant is a rotten root, without grace or fruit. 

Though the boughs and leaves of the date palm are green, 

greenness brings no benefit if the root is corrupt. 

If a branch is without green leaves, yet has a good root,

a hundred leaves will put forth their hands in the end.

Laila And The Khalifa – Mewlana Jalaluddin Rumi

The Khalifa said to Laila, “Art thou really she 

For whom Majnun lost his head and went distracted? 

Thou art not fairer than many other fair ones.” 

She replied, “Be silent; thou art not Majnun!” 

If thou hadst Majnun’s eyes, 

The two worlds would be within thy view. 

Thou art in thy senses, but Majnun is beside himself. 

In love to be wide awake is treason. 

The more a man is awake, the more he sleeps (to love); 

His (critical) wakefulness is worse than slumbering. 

Our wakefulness fetters our spirits, 

Then our souls are a prey to divers whims, 

Thoughts of loss and gain and fears of misery. 

They retain not purity, nor dignity, nor lustre, 

Nor aspiration to soar heavenwards. 

That one is really sleeping who hankers after each whim 

And holds parley with each fancy.

The Ghazal  of Rumi 

I was dead, then alive.

 Weeping, then laughing. 
The power of love came into me, 

and I became fierce like a lion, 

then tender like the evening star. 
He said, ‘You’re not mad enough. 

You don’t belong in this house.’ 
I went wild and had to be tied up. 

He said, ‘Still not wild enough 

to stay with us!’ 
I broke through another layer 

into joyfulness. 
He said, ‘Its not enough.’ 

I died.

 Do You Love Me ? – Mewlana Jalaluddin Rumi

A lover asked his beloved, 

Do you love yourself more 

than you love me? 

The beloved replied, 

I have died to myself 

and I live for you. 
I’ve disappeared from myself 

and my attributes. 

I am present only for you. 

I have forgotten all my learning, 

but from knowing you 

I have become a scholar. 
I have lost all my strength, 

but from your power 

I am able. 

If I love myself 

I love you. 

If I love you 

I love myself.

Bring Wine – Mewlana Jalaluddin Rumi 

Bring wine, for I am suffering crop sickness from the vintage; 

God has seized me, and I am thus held fast. 

By love’s soul, bring me a cup of wine that is the envy of the 

sun, for I care aught but love. 

Bring that which if I were to call it “soul” would be a shame, 

for the reason that I am pained in the head because of the soul. 

Bring that whose name is not contained in this mouth, through 

which the fissures of my speech split asunder. 

Bring that which, when it is not present, I am stupid and ig- 

norant, but when I am with it, I am the king of the subtle and 

crafty ones. 

Bring that which, the moment it is void of my head, I become 

black and dark, you might say I am of the infidels. 

Bring that which delivers out of this “bring” and “do not 

bring”; bring quickly, and repel me not, saying, “Whence shall 

I bring it?” 

Bring, and deliver the roof of the heavens through the long 

night from my abundant smoke and lamentations. 

Bring that which after my death, even out of my dust, will 

restore me to speech and thanksgiving even as Najjar. 

Bring me wine, for I am guardian of wine like a goblet, for 

whatever has gone into my stomach I deliver back completely. 

Najjar said, “After my death would that my people might be 

open-eyed to the ecstasy within me. 

“They would not regard my bones and blood; in spirit I ama 

mighty king, even though in body I am vile. 

“What a ladder I, the Carpenter, have chiseled! My going has 

reached the roof of the seventh heaven. 

“I journeyed like the Messiah, my ass remained below; I do 

no grieve for my ass, nor am I asslike of ears. 

“Do not like Eblis see in Adam only water and clay; see that 

behind the clay are my hundred thousand rose bowers.” 

Shams-e Tabrizi rose up from this flesh saying, “ I am the 

sun. Bring up my head from this mire. 

“Err not, when I enter the mire once more, for I am at rest, 

and am ashamed of this veil. 

“Every morning I will rise up, despite the blind; for the sake 

of the blind I will not cease to rise and set.” 

A Beauty Hint – Clarence Michael James Stanislaus Dennis

Sweet, think how much the better it would be 

If you thro’ life should thus preserve your beauty. 

It really doesn’t matter much to me; 

But don’t you think you owe the world a duty, 

And don’t you think that thro’ some kindly thought – 

Of me, for instance – beauty were well bought? 
Those wrinkles on your face, dear, 

Those bags beneath your eyes 

Are but the evil trace, dear, 

Of temper, spite and lies. 

Why can’t you be a saint, dear, 

Like dear old Joan of Arc; 

Be pleasant – which you ain’t, dear, 

And do not be a nark. 
Consider, sweetheart, if you smiled always 

How much, thro’ weeks, your face might be improving; 

In place of which, in these unhappy days, 

You go to beauty shops for the removing 

Of wrinkles, blemishes and ugly warts. 

Why, when a smile will serve, seek these resorts? 
Why can’t you raise a grin, sweet, 

And be a little beauty? 

For ugliness is sin, sweet, 

And loveliness a duty. 

So, for my sake, why can’t you make 

An effort to he glad. 

Just think of me and joyful be; 

For I am not too bad.

A Few Lines To Beauty – Clarence Michael James Stanislaus Dennis


You with the bobbed hair or Mary Pickford curls, 

Likewise you others 

Who still adopt the hair-dressing style, 

That makes the moderns smile. 

But was undoubtedly the dearest attribute of your mothers. 

And, by the by, 

You with the glad-eye – 

We’ve seen you in the street 

Looking particularly sweet. 

And we ask you 

Do you think that those girls in the city that is reputed to possess a harbor 

can overtask you? 

In the matter of looking nice – 

We do not seek to give advice; 

And, frankly, we don’t know. 

We have seen both types and so, 

Being diplomatic, 

We refrain from expressing an opinion that is too emphatic. 

We’ll leave it to the vote, 

Yet hasten to remark that we simply dote 

Upon the maiden who 

Is just like you, 

Fair reader! 

We seek not to assume the office or prerogative of a special pleader. 

And we own that this question of State Rights 

Gives us uneasy dreams o’ nights. 

Take no notice of those churls 

Who tell you that the Sydney girls 

Can put it all over you in regard to female beauty. 

My dears, you have a duty 

At any rate, 

Toward your State. 

Go in 

And Win! 

Among you are undoubtedly quite a number of perfect peaches 

And the sirens of the Sydney beaches 

May yet be proved to be not exactly the pick of the basket. 


With or without curls, 

The honor of your State and the noble men therein ask it. 

Here I conclude. 

And I trust that these few well-chosen remarks have not been in bad taste or 


A Bush Christmas – Clarence Michael James Stanislaus Dennis

The sun burns hotly thro’ the gums 

As down the road old Rogan comes 

The hatter from the lonely hut 

Beside the track to Woollybutt. 

He likes to spend his Christmas with us here. 

He says a man gets sort of strange 

Living alone without a change, 

Gets sort of settled in his way; 

And so he comes each Christmas day 

To share a bite of tucker and a beer. 
Dad and the boys have nought to do, 

Except a stray odd job or two. 

Along the fence or in the yard, 

‘It ain’t a day for workin’ hard.’ 

Says Dad. ‘One day a year don’t matter much.’ 

And then dishevelled, hot and red, 

Mum, thro’ the doorway puts her head 

And says, ‘This Christmas cooking, My! 

The sun’s near fit for cooking by.’ 

Upon her word she never did see such. 
Your fault,’ says Dad, ‘you know it is. 

Plum puddin’! on a day like this, 

And roasted turkeys! Spare me days, 

I can’t get over women’s ways. 

In climates such as this the thing’s all wrong. 

A bit of cold corned beef an’ bread 

Would do us very well instead.’ 

Then Rogan said, ‘You’re right; it’s hot. 

It makes a feller drink a lot.’ 

And Dad gets up and says, ‘Well, come along.’ 
The dinner’s served – full bite and sup. 

‘Come on,’ says Mum, ‘Now all sit up.’ 

The meal takes on a festive air; 

And even father eats his share 

And passes up his plate to have some more. 

He laughs and says it’s Christmas time, 

‘That’s cookin’, Mum. The stuffin’s prime.’ 

But Rogan pauses once to praise, 

Then eats as tho’ he’d starved for days. 

And pitches turkey bones outside the door. 
The sun burns hotly thro’ the gums, 

The chirping of the locusts comes 

Across the paddocks, parched and grey. 

‘Whew!’ wheezes Father. ‘What a day!’ 

And sheds his vest. For coats no man had need. 

Then Rogan shoves his plate aside 

And sighs, as sated men have sighed, 

At many boards in many climes 

On many other Christmas times. 

‘By gum!’ he says, ‘That was a slap-up feed!’ 
Then, with his black pipe well alight, 

Old Rogan brings the kids delight 

By telling o’er again his yarns 

Of Christmas tide ‘mid English barns 

When he was, long ago, a farmer’s boy. 

His old eyes glisten as he sees 

Half glimpses of old memories, 

Of whitened fields and winter snows, 

And yuletide logs and mistletoes, 

And all that half-forgotten, hallowed joy. 
The children listen, mouths agape, 

And see a land with no escape 

Fro biting cold and snow and frost 

A land to all earth’s brightness lost, 

A strange and freakish Christmas land to them. 

But Rogan, with his dim old eyes 

Grown far away and strangely wise 

Talks on; and pauses but to ask 

‘Ain’t there a dropp more in that cask?’ 

And father nods; but Mother says ‘Ahem!’ 
The sun slants redly thro’ the gums 

As quietly the evening comes, 

And Rogan gets his old grey mare, 

That matches well his own grey hair, 

And rides away into the setting sun. 

‘Ah, well,’ says Dad. ‘I got to say 

I never spent a lazier day. 

We ought to get that top fence wired.’ 

‘My!’ sighs poor Mum. ‘But I am tired! 

An’ all that washing up still to be done.’

A Ballad Of Freedom – Clarence Michael James Stanislaus Dennis

Now Mr. Jeremiah Bane 

He owned a warehouse in The Lane, 

An edifice of goodly size, 

Where, with keen private enterprise, 

He sold imported napery 

And drapery – and drapery. 

His singlets and his socks were sent 

Out over half the continent; 

In clothing for the nursery 

And mercery – and mercery 

He plied a most extensive trade, 

And quite enormous prodfits made, 

And barracked, with much fervency, 

For foreign-trade – described as ‘Free.’ 

He said, 


It was 

His creed. 

The trade described as Free. 
And this good man was known to fame 

For charity; indeed, his name 

Shone often in the daily press. 

When needy folk were in distress 

He aided – (with publicity) 

Mendicity – mendicity. 

And though much cash he thuswise spared 

There still were people who declared 

His act of private charity 

A rarity – a rarity. 

Donations, duly advertised, 

From business point of view, he prized; 

But ‘good by stealth’ he ne’er could see 

Was any use to such as he. 

But still, 

The press, 

With much 


Declared his hand was free. 
Now Mr. Bane’s employees were 

Wont to address the boss as ‘Sir,’ 

To show him most intense respect; 

And there were few who would neglect 

To couple with civility 

Humility – humility. 

They dressed in cheap but pretty clothes, 

And ev’ry man turned up his nose 

And scorned familiarity 

Or parity – or parity 

With ill-dressed toilers who ‘combined.’ 

They thought proceedings of that kind 

Were of a very ‘low’ degree, 

For they were ‘cultured,’ don’t you see. 

‘Tis true 

Their pay 

Was mean, 

But they 

Felt proud to be so free. 
Though they were vilely underpaid 

They were too proud – or else afraid 

To advertise the fact abroad 

Or see to get a Wages Board. 

Besides their meek servility, 

Gentility – gentility 

Forbade so rash an act; but still 

One man there was – (his name was Bill) 

Who vowed their fool propensity 

Was density – was density 

An unenlightened state of mind, 

A lack of wit that made them blind. 

‘You’re but a lot of worms,’ said he. 

‘If you were men you’d clearly see 


You band 

And make 

A stand 

You never can be free.’ 
And ev’ry day this person, Bill, 

Conversed with them of unions till 

They owned his arguments were true, 

And one by one waxed eager to 

Embrace an opportunity 

For unity – for unity. 

They talked about a Wages Board 

Which, formerly, they had abhorred, 

And girded at their slavery 

With bravery – with bravery. 

Each man began to feel ‘The Firm’ 

No longer owned it for its worm; 

Their independence they could see 

Achieved by simple unity; 


Their clothes 

And mixed 

With those 

Who battle to be free. 
When Mr. Bane one morning heard 

About his thing he cried, ‘Absurd! 

They’ll never get my clerks to horde 

With those who seek the Wages Board, 

And lose respectability! 

Futility! – Futility! 

My clerks are gentlemen who’d scorn 

To mingle with the lowly born. 

Such bosh I’ve never heard!’ said he. 

‘Absurd!’ said he – ‘Absurd!’ said he. 

‘As for their pay, they’re quite content 

They’ve never asked an extra cent! 

And in 

The morn 

They’ll mark 

Their scorn, 

And show you they are free.’ 
And on the morrow Mr. Bane 

Called them together to ‘explain’: 

‘I have a small petition here 

But first, I wish to make it clear,’ 

Said he, with simple gravity 

And suavity – and suavity, 

‘That no man here is asked to sign.’ 

(His voice was gentle and benign) 

‘I trust to your humanity 

And sanity – and sanity 

To guide you; but I feel quite sure 

That Wages Boards you can’t endure. 

I leave it all to you,’ said he. 

‘It makes no difference to me. 

My views 

Are known, 

But still, 

I’ve shown 

Your choice in this is free.’ 
The staff it looked at Mr. Bane, 

And in his eye it read, quite plain, 

‘Neath that expression so benign, 

The fate of him who did not sign 

A vision of futurity 

Obscurity – obscurity 

A dearth of work – in short, the sack. 

They knew that he who answered back 

Would earn, by his temerity, 

Severity – severity. 

So one and all, with shaky pen, 

Signed this refusal to be men…. 

But surely, as you must agree, 

Their choice was free as it could be, 

They said 

The Board 

They all 


Preferring to be free. 
Still Mr. Bane grows fat and sleek, 

And still, at thirty bob a week, 

His clerks slave on from morn till night, 

No hope of better things in sight. 

But Bane, with much benignity 

And dignity – and dignity, 

When talk of Wages Board is heard, 

Declares the notion is absurd: 

‘My clerks with prompt celerity 

And verity – and verity 

Refused the thing with one accord. 

The clerks themselves don’t want the Board! 

It is preposterous,’ says he, 

‘To force it on who don’t agree 

And still 

His men 

With brain 

And pen 

To fatten him are free.

The Colorful Rose – Allama Muhammad Iqbal

You are not troubled with solving enigmas 

O, beautiful Rose! nor do you have sublime feelings in your heart 
Though you ornament the assembly, still you flower apart 

In life’s assembly I am not permitted such comforts 
In my garden I am the complete orchestra of longing 

While your life is devoid of love’s passionate warmth 
To pluck you from the branch is not my custom 

I am not blinded by mere appearances 
O, colorful rose this hand is not your tormentor 

I am no callous flower picker! 
I am no intern to analyze you with scientific eyes 

Like a lover, I see you with nightingales’ eyes 
Despite your innumerable tongues, you have chosen silence 

What secrets, O Rose, lie concealed in your bosom? 
Like me you’re a leaf from the garden of Ñër 

Far from the garden I am, far from the garden we both are 
You are content, but I am a scattered fragrance 

Pierced by the sword of love in my quest 
This turmoil within me might be a means of fulfillment 

This torment, a source of illumination 
My frailty might be the beginning of strength 

My envy might mirror the cup of divination 
My constant vigil is a world-illuminating candle 

And teaches this steed, the human intellect, to gallop

The Himalayas – Allama Muhammad Iqbal

O Himalah! O rampart of the realm of India! 

Bowing down, the sky kisses your forehead 
Your condition does not show any signs of old age 

You are young in the midst of day and night’s alternation 
The Kalâm of ñër Sân« witnessed but one Effulgence 

For the discerning eye you are an embodiment of Effulgence 
To the outward eye you are a mere mountain range 

In reality you are our sentinel, you are India’s rampart 
You are the diwan whose opening verse is the sky 

You lead Man to the solitudes of his heart’s retreat 
Snow has endowed you with the turban of honour 

Which scoffs at the crown of the world-illuminating sun 
Antiquity is but a moment of your bygone age 

Dark clouds are encamped in your valleys 
Your peaks are matching with the pleiades in elegance 

Though you are standing on earth your abode is sky’s expanse 
The stream in your flank is a fast flowing mirror 

For which the breeze is working like a kerchief 
The mountain top’s lightning has given a whip 

In the hands of cloud for the ambling horse 
O Himalah! Are you like a theater stage 

Which nature’s hand has made for its elements? 
Ah! How the cloud is swaying in excessive joy 

The cloud like an unchained elephant is speeding 
Gentle movement of the morning zephyr is acting like a cradle 

Every flower bud is swinging with intoxication of existence 
The flower bud’s silence with the petal’s tongue is saying 

‘I have never experienced the jerk of the florist’s hand 
Silence itself is relating the tale of mine 

The corner of nature’s solitude is the abode of mine’ 
The brook is melodiously descending from the high land 

Putting the waves of Kawthar and Tasnâm to embarrassment 
As if showing the mirror to Nature’s beauty 

Now evading now rowing against the rock in its way 
Play in passing this orchestra of beautiful music 

O wayfarer! The heart comprehends your music 
When the night’s Lailah unfurls her long hair 

The sound of water-falls allures the heart 
That silence of the night whose beauty surpasses speech 

That state of silent meditation overshadowing the trees 
That dusk’s beauty which shivers along the mountain range 

Very beautiful looks this rouge on your cheeks 
O Himalah! Do relate to us some stories of the time 

When your valleys became abode of Man’s ancestors 
Relate something of the life without sophistication 

Which had not been stained by the rouge of sophistication 
O Imagination! Bring back that period 

O Vicissitudes of Time speed backwards

Almost Over – Dante Gabriel Rossetti

YOU say I should not think upon her now: 

But then I have stood beside her listening, 

And watched her rose—breathed lips when she would sing: 

And I can scarcely yet imagine how 

I ever should despise that stately brow 

And flowering breast that is so pure a thing. 

Alas for all the weary blood—running 

When from the heart love strives to tear a vow! 

And yet perchance—even as you tell me—soon 

Her spirit of my spirit will leave hold, 

And, when I hear her tread, I shall not blush 

Doubly, for love and shame. But then the moon 

Assuredly will rise, and Sleep shall fold 

Her hair round me, and Death will whisper Hush!

Another Love – Dante Gabriel Rossetti

OF her I thought who now is gone so far: 

And, the thought passing over, to fall thence 

Was like a fall from spirit into sense 

Or from the heaven of heavens to sun and star. 

None other than Love’s self ordained the bar 

‘Twixt her and me; so that if, going hence, 

I met her, it could only seem a dense 

Film of the brain,—just nought, as phantoms are. 

Now when I passed your threshold and came in, 

And glanced where you were sitting, and did see 

Your tresses in these braids and your hands thus,— 

I knew that other figure, grieved and thin, 

That seemed there, yea that was there, could not be, 

Though like God’s wrath it stood dividing us.

Before A Court Of Justice – Johann Wolfgang von Goethe

THE father’s name ye ne’er shall be told 
Of my darling unborn life; 

“Shame, shame,” ye cry, “on the strumpet bold!” 
Yet I’m an honest wife. 
To whom I’m wedded, ye ne’er shall be told, 
Yet he’s both loving and fair; 

He wears on his neck a chain of gold, 
And a hat of straw doth he wear. 
If scorn ’tis vain to seek to repel, 
On me let the scorn be thrown. 

I know him well, and he knows me well, 
And to God, too, all is known. 
Sir Parson and Sir Bailiff, again, 
I pray you, leave me in peace! 

My child it is, my child ’twill remain, 
So let your questionings cease!

A Symbol – Johann Wolfgang von Goethe

THE mason’s trade Observe them well, 
Resembles life, And watch them revealing 
With all its strife,– How solemn feeling 

Is like the stir made And wonderment swell 
By man on earth’s face. The hearts of the brave. 
Though weal and woe The voice of the blest, 
The future may hide, And of spirits on high 
Unterrified Seems loudly to cry: 

We onward go “To do what is best, 
In ne’er changing race. Unceasing endeavour! 
A veil of dread “In silence eterne 
Hangs heavier still. Here chaplets are twin’d, 
Deep slumbers fill That each noble mind 

The stars over-head, Its guerdon may earn.– 
And the foot-trodden grave. Then hope ye for ever!”

Autumn Feelings – Johann Wolfgang von Goethe

FLOURISH greener, as ye clamber, 

Oh ye leaves, to seek my chamber, 
Up the trellis’d vine on high! 

May ye swell, twin-berries tender, 

Juicier far,–and with more splendour 
Ripen, and more speedily! 

O’er ye broods the sun at even 

As he sinks to rest, and heaven 
Softly breathes into your ear 

All its fertilising fullness, 

While the moon’s refreshing coolness, 
Magic-laden, hovers near; 

And, alas! ye’re watered ever 
By a stream of tears that rill 

From mine eyes–tears ceasing never, 
Tears of love that nought can still!