Writing in Code

O morning breeze, bring your happy face as soon as you can
To the Beloved’s Street!

You are the Messenger of Mystery, and now I know I am on the
Right path. So don’t give me orders, but urge me gently on.

Winebringer, give me some of your reddest wine.
As my soul is slipping from my hands.

Let me tie all my hope to Your woven gold belt.
This diet of reason I’ve been on has led me nowhere.
That waistline of Yours traces a divine subtlety. Now I know.

From where I sit, the sight of Your sword is a sure sign of drought,
So take me captive and slay me with water and buckets of ice.

I have written these words in code, made only for Your eyes.
Please take them, and read them right away!

For Hafiz, speaking Turkish and Arabic are like talking in the same tongue:
He tells Love’s story in every language that he knows!


– Translation by Thomas Rain Crowe

– From: Drunk on the Wine of the Beloved 100 Poems of Hafiz   – Shambhala 2001

– Reprinted with permission