Hafiz: Ghazal 40 "Thanks be to God..." (From Persian)

Ghazal 40: "Thanks be to God..." 
By Hafiz
Translated by A.Z. Foreman

Thanks be to God that at long last the wine-shop's door  
  Is open, since it's what I'm longing, headed for.
The jars are clamoring, bubbling with intoxication.  
  The wine they hold is real and not a metaphor.1
It brings me drunkenness and pride and dissipation  
  I bring my helplessness, and desperate need for more.
A secret I've not told to others, nor will tell,  
  I'll tell my Friend. With him a secret is secure.
It's no short story. It describes each twist and turn  
  In my beloved's hair. For lovers have much lore.
Majnún's heart fell for Layla's curls,2 as King Mahmoud's  
  Face fell at slave Ayáz's feet forevermore.3
I, like a hawk, have sealed my eyes to all this world,  
  To catch sight of your face, the beauty I adore.
Whoever wanders in the Ka'ba of your street,  
  Your eyebrow is the Qibla he must pray before. 
          Friends who would know why humbled Hafiz' heart is burning,
    Ask candles why they melt about a burning core.


1 - As Wheeler Thackston writes in A Millennium of Classical Persian Poetry:
One of the major difficulties Persian poetry poses to the novice reader lies in the pervasion of poetry by mysticism. Fairly early in the game the mystics found that they could "express the ineffable" in poetry much better than in prose. Usurping the whole of the poetic vocabulary that had been built up by that time, they imbued every word with mystical signification. What had begun as liquid wine with alcoholic content became the "wine of union with the godhead" on which the mystic is "eternally drunk." Beautiful young cupbearers with whom one might like to dally became shāhids, "bearers of witness" to the dazzling beauty of that-which-truly-exists. After the mystics had wrought their influence on the tradition, every word of the poetic vocabulary had acquired such "clouds" of associated meaning from lyricism and mysticism that the two strains merged into one. Of course some poets wrote poetry that is overtly and unmistakably mystical and "Sufi." It is much more difficult to identify poetry that is not mystical. It is useless to ask, for instance, whether Hāfiz's poetry is "Sufi poetry" or not. The fact is that in the fourteenth century it was impossible to write a ghazal that did not reverberate with mystical overtones forced on it by the poetic vocabulary itself.
It is for this reason that Hafiz might feel he had reason to go so far as to explicitly state that the wine here is not a metaphor. He short-circuits the mystical tradition by acknowledging, and negating it.
It is not easy to pinpoint what, exactly, distinguishes Hafiz from his contemporaries and predecessors. My sense is that Hafiz, somewhat like Pushkin, inherited a tradition that happened to accord with his own temperament and needs, as well as his time and place, so perfectly that all of that tradition's conventions came more naturally to him than to his predecessors, and he was thus able to breathe great freshness and scope into a storehouse of ideas that were in and of themselves neither new nor unique to him. Heterodoxy is praised and vaunted in the ghazal, but Hafiz was heterodox. Likewise wine is praised as a matter of tradition, but Hafiz really did love wine that much. And so forth. Then again, given that there isn't much about Hafiz' life that we can know other than what clues in his own poems tell us, I may be open to the charge of circular reasoning there.
On this point, there are two things worth mentioning here with regard to the poem at hand. First, Hafiz likes wine. Though the theme of wine-drinking, real or metaphorical, was not new to Persian poetry, no poet before Hafiz had made wine (both real and not) and the bacchanalian scene such an integral, constant and almost obsessive part of his verse. Second: Hafiz likes sticking it to The Man when he can get away with it. His poetry is full of verses and even whole poems which blast or mock the religious establishment, which he seems to have viewed as laden with hypocrisy. While antinomianism and anti-clericalism likewise had long been part of the ghazal tradition (and indeed can be shown to have Sufi origins), it is generally agreed that in no other medieval Persian poet of his time or earlier do we find so much verse devoted to unmasking pietism, poking fun at the hypocrisy of religious authorities, and scandalizing orthodox sensibilities by praising what is normally disreputable, and casting aspersions on what is normally revered. Lines that flaunt their deviance or impiety, or indulge in wanton profanation of the sacred in Hafiz' work seem less the usual dutiful and fashionable flirtations with heterodoxy of other poets, and more chosen for their shock-value. Demystifying a normally mystically-tinted beverage would also seem to be quite in keeping with this aspect of Hafiz' temperament.

- Majnūn and Laylā: famous fictional lovers in Islamicate cultures often mentioned as a paradigm of love (rather as Romeo and Juliet are in English-speaking ones.) Majnūn fell in love with Layla when the two were young, and asked to marry her. Majnūn however, was so obsessed with Layla, so ardently in love with her and so ceaseless in professing that love, that Layla's father believed him to be mentally unbalanced and so refused to allow it, choosing another to marry her instead. On hearing that Layla had been married to another and was traveling with him, Majnun left his tribe and started wandering aimlessly in the wilderness in search of her, never to return to his tribe. She took ill and eventually died of longing for him. His dead body was eventually found at the grave where she had been buried.

-Mahmūd and Ayāz: another amorous pair, the most celebrated gay couple in all of medieval Persia. Mahmud of Ghazna (971-1030) was a Ghaznavid king who fell passionately in love with his slave Ayāz, though he also had a wife, Jahān Kawsarī, by whom he had two heirs. So great was Mahmūd's love for the handsome slave that he made him general of the royal army, and eventually installed him as the first Muslim governor of Lahore, which Mahmud had recently conquered. According to an anecdote famous at the time (though which likely hasn't a whit of historical truth to it) King Mahmūd once asked Ayāz "do you know of any king greater or mightier than I?" Ayāz responded "Yes, I am a king greater than you." Mahmūd demanded proof for such an outrageous claim. Ayāz replied thus: "though you are a king, you are a slave to your heart, and I, though a slave, am king of that heart."
Both couples were the inspiration for many poems and songs, and both are commonly referenced in Persian poetry. Yet Laylā and Majnūn are a fictional heterosexual Arab couple who fell in love as children, whose love remained unconsummated, and who never loved anyone except one another.
Mahmūd and Ayāz are a historical homosexual Turkic couple who fell in love in adulthood, whose love was consummated, and whose relationship was not exclusive. Furthermore, the story of Laylā and Majnūn is one which focuses on Majnūn,  the pursuer, as the ideal, or at least paradigmatic, lover. The story of Mahmūd and Ayāz, on the other hand, focuses, as do most literary allusions to the couple, on Ayāz, the pursued, conceived as the ideal beloved. In mentioning these two contrasting couples in parallel fashion, Hafiz is delineating the great range of possible forms love may take, and the possible points of view from which one can conceive and experience it.

The Original:

المنة لله که در میکده باز است  زان رو که مرا بر در او روی نیاز است
خم‌ها همه در جوش و خروشند ز مستی  وان می که در آن جاست حقیقت نه مجاز است
از وی همه مستی و غرور است و تکبر  وز ما همه بیچارگی و عجز و نیاز است
رازی که بر غیر نگفتیم و نگوییم  با دوست بگوییم که او محرم راز است
شرح شکن زلف خم اندر خم جانان  کوته نتوان کرد که این قصه دراز است
بار دل مجنون و خم طرۀ لیلی  رخسارۀ محمود و کف پای ایاز است
بردوخته‌ام دیده چو باز از همه عالم  تا دیده من بر رخ زیبای تو باز است
در کعبۀ کوی تو هر آن کس که بیاید  از قبلۀ ابروی تو در عین نماز است
      ای مجلسیان سوز دل حافظ مسکین   
      از شمع بپرسید که در سوز و گداز است

Tajik Cyrillic: 

Алминнату лиллаҳ, ки дари майкада боз аст, 
3-он рӯ, ки маро бар дари ӯ рӯи ниёз аст. 
Хумҳо ҳама дар ҷӯшу хурӯшанд зи мастӣ 
В-он май, ки дар он ҷост, ҳақиқат, на маҷоз аст. 
Аз вай ҳама мастиву ғурур асту такаббур 
В-аз мо ҳама бечорагиву аҷзу ниёз аст. 
Розе, ки бари ғайр нагуфтему нагӯем, 
Бо дӯст бигӯем, ки ӯ маҳрами роз аст. 
Шарҳи шикани зулфи хам андар хами ҷонон 
Кӯтаҳ натавон кард, ки ин қисса дароз аст. 
Бори дили Маҷнуну хами турраи Лайлӣ, 
Рухсораи Маҳмуду кафи пои Аёз аст. 
Бардӯхтаам дида, чу боз, аз ҳама олам, 
То дидаи ман бар рухи зебои ту боз аст. 
Дар Каъбаи кӯи ту ҳар он кас, ки биёяд, 
Аз Қиблаи абрӯи ту дар айни намоз аст. 
Эй маҷлисиён, сӯзи дили Ҳофизи мискин 
Аз шамъ бипурсед, ки дар сӯзу гудоз аст.


Alminnatulillah ki dar-i maykada bāzast,
Zān rō, ki marā bar dar-i ō rōy-i niyāzast.
Xumhā hama dar jōš o xurōšand zi mastī
Wān may, ki dar ānjāst, haqīqat, na majāzast.
Az way hama mastī o ɣurūrast o takabbur
Waz mā hama bēčāragī o 'ajz o niyāzast.
Rāzē ki bar-i ɣayr naguftēm o nagōyēm,
Bā dōst bigōyēm, ki ō mahram-i rāzast.
Šarh-i šikan-i zulf-i xam andar xam-i jānān
Kōtah natawān kard, ki īn qissa darāzast.
Bār-i dil-i Majnūn o xam-i turra-i Laylī
Ruxsāra-i Mahmūd o kaf-i pāy-i Ayāzast.
Bardōxtaam dīda, čo bāz, az hama 'ālam,
Tā dīda-i man bar rux-i zēbā-i to bāzast.
Dar Ka'ba-i kōy-i to har ān kas ki biāyad
Az qibla-i abrō-i to dar 'ayn-i namāzast
Ay majlisīān, sōz-i dil-i Hāfiz-i maskīn
Az šam' bipursēd, ki dar sōz o gudāzast. 

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