BLACK CAT POEMS
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translated by Edwin Arnold
From the Bustan
I heard how, to the beat of some quick tune,
There rose and danced a Damsel like the
Flower-mouthed and Pâri-faced; and all around her
Neck-stretching Lovers gathered close; but, soon
A flickering lamp-flame caught her skirt, and set
Fire to the flying gauze. Fear did beget
Trouble in that light heart! She cried amain.
Quoth one among her worshipers, "Why fret,
Tulip of Love? Th' extinguished fire hath burned
Only one leaf of thee; but I am turned
To ashes--leaf and stalk, and flower and root--
By lamp-flash of thine eyes!"--"Ah, Soul concerned
"Solely with self!"--she answered, laughing low,
"If thou wert Lover thou hadst not said so.
Who speaks of the Belov'd's woe is not his
Speaks infidelity, true Lovers know!"
poems by Saadi