Ch 05 On Love And Youth Story 20

It is related that the qazi of Hamdan, having conceived affection towards a farrier-boy and the horseshoe of his heart being on fire, he sought for some time to meet him, roaming about and seeking for opportunities, according to the saying of chroniclers:

  That straight tall cypress my eyes beheld
  It robbed me of my heart and threw me down.
  Those wanton eyes have taken my heart with a lasso.
  If thou desirest to preserve thy heart shut thy eyes.

I was informed that the boy, who had heard something of the qazi’s passion, happening to meet him in a thoroughfare, manifested immense wrath, assailed the qazi with disrespectful and insulting words, snatched up a stone and left no injury untried. The qazi said to an ullemma of repute who happened to be of the same opinion with him:

  ‘Look at that sweetheart and his getting angry,
  And that bitter knot of his sweet eyebrow.’
  The Arab says: ‘A slap from a lover is a raisin.
  A blow from the hand on the mouth
  Is sweeter than eating bread with one’s own hand.

In the same way the boy’s impudence might be indicating kindness as padshahs utter hard words whilst they secretly wish for peace:

  Grapes yet unripe are sour.
  Wait two or three days, they will become sweet.

After saying these words he returned to his court of justice, where some respectable men connected with him kissed the ground of service and said: ‘With thy permission we shall, doing obeisance, speak some words to thee although they may be contrary to politeness because illustrious men have said:

  It is not permissible to argue on every topic.
  To find fault with great men is wrong.

‘But as in consequence of favours conferred by thy lordship in former times upon thy servants it would be a kind of treachery to withhold the opinion they entertain, they inform thee that the proper way is not to yield to thy inclinations concerning this boy but to fold up the carpet of lascivious desires because thy dignity as qazi is high and must not be polluted by a base crime. The companion thou hast seen is this, and our words thou hast heard are these:

  One who has done many disreputable things
  Cares nothing for the reputation of anyone.
  Many a good name of fifty years
  Was trodden under foot by one bad name.”

The qazi approved of the unanimous advice of his friends and appreciated their good opinion as well as their steadfast fidelity, saying that the view taken by his beloved friends on the arrangement of his case was perfectly right and their arguments admitting of no contradiction. Nevertheless:

  Although love ceases in consequence of reproval
  I heard that just men sometimes concoct falsehoods.
  Blame me as much as thou listest
  Because blackness cannot be washed off from a negro.
  Nothing can blot out my remembrance of thee.
  I am a snake with broken head and cannot turn.

These words he said and sent some persons to make inquiries about him, spending boundless money because it is said that whoever has gold in his hand possesses strength of arm and he who has no worldly goods has no friends in the whole world:

  Whoever has seen gold droops his head,
  Although he may be hard to bend like iron-backed scales.

In short, one night he obtained privacy but during that night the police obtained information that the qazi is spending the whole of it with wine in his hand and a sweetheart on his bosom, enjoying himself, not sleeping, and singing:

  Has this cock perhaps not crowed at the proper time this night
  And have the lovers not had their fill of embrace, and kiss
  Whilst alas for only a moment the eye of confusion is asleep?
  Remain awake that life may not elapse in vain
  Till thou hearest the morning call from the Friday-mosque
  Or the noise of kettle-drums on Atabek’s palace-gate.
  Lips against lips like the cock’s eye
  Are not to part at the crowing of a silly cock.

Whilst the qazi was in this state one of his dependants entered and said: ‘Arise and run as far as thy feet will carry thee because the envious have not only obtained a handle for vexation but have spoken the truth. We may, whilst the fire of confusion is yet burning low, perchance extinguish it with the water of stratagem but when it blazes up high it may destroy a world.’ The qazi, however, replied:

  ‘When the lion has his claws on the game
  What boots it if a jackal makes his appearance?
  Keep thy face on the face of the friend and leave
  The foe to chew the back of his own hand in r
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"Ch 05 On Love And Youth Story 20" Poetry.net. STANDS4 LLC, 2019. Web. 15 Dec. 2019. <https://www.poetry.net/poem/33916/ch-05-on-love-and-youth-story-20>.

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