Rubaiyat verse – A calling

Literal:

At dawn came a calling from the tavern
Hark drunken mad man of the cavern
Arise; let us fill with wine one more turn
Before destiny fills our cup, our urn.

Meaning:

Early one morning I heard an angelic chime
Bringing news of a loving and joyous clime
Pursuit of the unimportant is the worst crime
Live in joy & love before the end of your time.

Fitzgerald:

Dreaming when Dawn’s Left Hand was in the Sky
I heard a Voice within the Tavern cry,
“Awake, my Little ones, and fill the Cup
Before Life’s Liquor in its Cup be dry.”

image

Literal:

If my coming were up to me, I’d never be born
And if my going were on my accord, I’d go with scorn
Isn’t it better that in this world, so old and worn
Never to be born, neither stay, nor be away torn?

Meaning:

Why was I given life? Why was my seed ever sown?
Why having to leave all alone with moan and groan?
If the universal wisdom received mine on loan
I’d never be born, stay or leave, let it be known.

Fitzgerald:

Indeed, the idols I have loved so long
Have done my Credit in Men’s Eye much Wrong:
Have drown’d my Honour in a shallow Cup,
And sold my Reputation for a Song.

image

Literal:

When the canary made its way to the field
Found the rose and wine smiling, kneeled,
In tongues its message in my ear it thus reeled
Hark, no moment in time did twice yield.

Meaning:

I watched the birds on nature’s stage
Playful, in flight, page after page
Thus opened the doors of my cage
& learnt each moment to fully engage.

Fitzgerald:

Iram indeed is gone with all its Rose,
And Jamshyd’s Sev’n-ring’d Cup where no one knows;
But still the Vine her ancient Ruby yields,
And still a Garden by the Water blows.

 
- Omar Khayyam