Hafez 491

Mario Petrucci


translation of the classic ancient Persian poet Hafez, a Sufi master

(14th C, Shiraz, Iran)


The rose breaks fast, and opens. Unresisting, I bear it into me – dark wine.

In this season, where is a rose-cup without petals, a petal lacking sheen?


If your soil is a dust of self-denial, the rosebud heart surely shrivels.

Gardener, irrigate your plot with wine – let every bud swell a little!


See, today, the Sufi – who, yesterday, spoke so solidly on the need

for moderation – out wobbling in the fields, enamoured of the wind.


These smooth-cheeked blooms won’t last the week: to come and go is

their nature. Nectar-drinker, you must hurry, as a bee does, to your rose.


Fellow lover: spring is in departure, and your rosebush yellows, untended.

The Beloved wine, like your garden’s insect music, drains away, unheeded.


Our flock, darkly asleep among the trees, awaited dawn: it came like a cup, up

-side-down, reflecting a Face filling with light, Light dripping at a nick in its lip.


See: the Master is also the Minstrel, plucking sky’s instrument to impossible rain.

That truer Sun for field and garden sings Love’s banquet, again, onto empty tables.


Award-winning UK poet, ecologist and PhD physicist Mario Petrucci has held major poetry residencies at the Imperial War Museum and with BBC Radio 3.  Heavy Water: a poem for Chernobyl (Enitharmon, 2004) secured the Daily Telegraph/ Arvon Prize.  i tulips (Enitharmon, 2010) exemplifies Petrucci’s distinctive combination of innovation and humanity.  http://www.mariopetrucci.com

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