"Sonety, jaká slast..."
Ivan Blatný

Nizam-ud-din-Ahmad - sonetový cyklus indického básníka s anglickým vzděláním (r. 1914) v anglickém originále

28. června 2007 v 12:34 | Nizam-ud-din-Ahmad |  Sonetové cykly
PROLOGUE

As one who wanders lone and wearily
Through desert tracts of Silence and of Night,
Pining for Lovers keen utterance and for light,
And chasing shadowy forms that mock and flee,
My soul was wandering through Eternity,
Seeking, within the depth and on the height
Of Being, one with whom it might unite
In life and love and immortality;

When lo! she stood before me, whom I'd sought,
With dying hope, through life's decaying years--
A form, a spirit, human yet divine.
Love gave her eyes the light of heav'n, and taught
Her lips the mystic music of the spheres.
Our beings met,--I felt her soul in mine;

I
REBIRTH

To me no mortal but a spirit blest,
A Light-girt messenger of Love art thou--
The radiant star of Hope upon thy brow.
The thrice-pure fire of Love within thy breast!
Thou comest to me as a heavenly guest,
As God's fulfilment of the purest vow
Love's heart e'er made--thou com'st to show e'en _now_
The Infinite, th' Eternal and the Best!

I clasp thy feet,--O fold me in thy wings,
And place thy pure white hands upon my head,
And breathe, O breathe, thy love-breath o'er mine eyes
Till, like the flame that from dark ashes springs,
My chastened spirit, from a self that's dead,
Upon the wings of Love shall heav'nward rise.

II
THE CROWN OF LIFE


I know not what Love is,--a memory
Of Heav'n once known,--a yearning for some goal
That shines afar,--a dream that doth control
The spirit, shadowing forth what is to be.
But this I know, my heart hath found in thee
The crown of life, the glory of the soul,
The healing of all strife, the making whole
Of my imperfect being,--yea, of me!

For to mine eyes thine eyes, through Love, reveal
The smile of God; to me God's healing breath
Comes through thy hallowed lips whose pray'r is Love.
Thy touch gives life! And oh, let me but feel
Thy hovering hand my closing eyes above,--
Then, then, my soul will triumph over Death.

III
BEFORE THE THRONE
When on thy brow I gaze and in thine eyes--
Eyes heavy-laden with the soul's desire,
Not passion-lit, but lit with Heav'n's own fire--
I have a vision of Love's Paradise.
Gazing, my tranced spirit straightway flies
Beyond the zone to which the stars aspire;
I hear the blent notes of the white-wing'd quire
Around Immortal Love triumphant rise.

And there I kneel before th' eternal throne
Of Love, whose light conceals him,--there I see,
Veiled in his sacred light, a face well known
To me on earth, now, yearning, bend o'er me.
Heaven's mystic veil, inwove of light and tone,
Conceals thee not, Beloved,--I know thee!

IV
WORSHIP


How poor is all my love, how great thy claim!
How weak the breath, the voice which would reveal
All that thy soul hath taught my soul to feel--
Longings profound,--deep thoughts without a name.
If God's self might be worshipped, without blame,
In His best works, then would I silent kneel
Watching thine eyes,--until my soul should steal
Back, unperceived, to regions whence it came!

If my whole life were but one thought of thee,
That thought the purest worship of my heart
And my soul's yearning blent; if at thy feet
I offered such a life, there still would be
Something to wish for,--something to complete
The measure of my love and thy desert.

V
UNITY


When I approach thee, Love, I lay aside
All that is mortal in me; with a heart
Absolved and pure, and cleansed in every part
Of every thought that I might wish to hide
From God, I come,--fit spirit to abide
With such a soaring spirit as thou art,
Whose eye transfixes with a fiery dart
Presumptuous passion and ignoble pride.

Yea, thus I come to thee, and thus I dare
To gaze into thine eyes; I take thy hand,
And its soft touch upon my lips and eyes
Thrills thy pure being, while it lingers there,
Into my heart and soul;--and then we stand
Like the first two that loved in Paradise!

VI
LOVE'S SILENCE


When through thine eyes the light of Heav'n doth shine
Upon my being, and thy whisper brings,
As the soft rustling of an angel's wings,
Joy to my soul and peace and grace divine;
When thus thy body and thy soul combine
To weave the mystic web thy beauty flings
Around my heart, whose thrilling silence rings
With Hope's unuttered songs that make thee mine,--

Ah, then, O Love! what need of words have we,
Who speak in feeling to each other's heart?
Words are too weak Love's message to impart,
Too frail to live through Love's eternity.
Silence, the voice of God, alone must be
Love's voice for thee, beloved as them art.

VII
THE SUBLIME HOPE


What need to tell thee o'er and o'er again
What eyes to eyes have spoken silently
And heart to heart hath uttered? Love must be
For us a hushed delight, a voiceless pain
Serenely borne! Our lips must ne'er profane
Our inmost feelings,--lest the sanctity
Of Love be lessened in our hearts and we
Nought higher than the common path attain!

The common path were death to us, whose love,
O'erruled by Fate, from earthly hopes debarred,
Must look to Heav'n for sublimer joys
Than those which earth can give, which earth destroys.
Our path is steep, but there is light above,
And Faith can make the roughest way less hard.

VIII
THE HEART OF LOVE


Look in mine eyes, Beloved,--for my tongue
Must never utter what my heart doth claim,--
And read Love there, for Love's forbidden name
Dies on my trembling lips unvoiced, unsung.
Nor sighs, nor tears--the bitter tribute wrung
From hearts of woe--must e'er that love proclaim
For which the world's unpitying heart would blame
Thy pity--though from purest fountains sprung.

Fate and the world, they bid wide oceans roll
Between our yearning hearts and their desire;
Yea, lips they silence, but can ne'er control
The heart of Love, nor quench its sacred fire.
I must not speak; O look into my soul--
There read the message which thou dost require!

IX
"TWIXT STAR AND STAR"


Not here,--not here, where weak conventions mar
Life's hopes and joys, Love's beauty, truth and grace,
Must I come near thee, greet thee face to face,
Pour in thine ear the songs and sighs that are
My heart's best offerings. But in regions far,
Where Love's ethereal pinions may embrace
Beauty divine--in the clear interspace
Of twilight silence betwixt star and star,

And in the smiles of cloudless skies serene,
In Dawn's first blush and Sunset's lingering glow,
And in the glamour of the Moon's chaste beams--
My soul meets thine, and there thine image seen,
More real than life, doth to my lone heart show
Such charms as live in Memory's haunting dreams!

X
THE HIGHER KNIGHTHOOD


A time there was, when for thy beauty's prize--
Hadst thou but deemed my love that prize deserved--
What hope, what faith my daring heart had nerved
For proud achievement and for high emprize!
No Knight, that owned the spell of Beauty's eyes
And wore her sleeve upon his helm, had served
His vows with faith like mine; I ne'er had swerved
One jot from mine for all beneath the skies.

That time is dead, alas! and yet this heart
Is thine, still thine, with Love's high chivalry
And Faith that cannot die; but now its part
Must be a higher knighthood,--patiently
To brook life's ills, and, pierced with many a dart,
By sacrifice of self to merit thee.

XI
IN BEAUTY'S BLOOM


As when the Moon, emerging from a cloud,
Sheds on the dreary earth her gracious light,
A smile comes o'er the frowning brow of Night,
Who hastens to withdraw her sable shroud;
And then the lurking shadows' dark-robed crowd,
Pursued with glitt'ring shafts, is put to flight;
And, robed in silv'ry raiment, soft and bright
The humblest flower as a Queen seems proud;

So when thou com'st to me in Beauty's bloom,
And on thy face soft Pity's graces shine,
Thou can'st dispel the heavy shades of gloom
From my sad heart, which ceases then to pine;
And Hope and Joy their quenched beams relume
And gild the universe with light divine.

XII
ETERNAL JOY


Truth is but as the eye of God doth see;
And Love is truth, and Love hath made thee mine.
What though on earth our lives may not combine,
Love makes us one for all Eternity!
God gives us to each other, bids us be
Each other's soul's fulfilment, makes Love shine
Upon our souls as His own light divine.
An effluence of His own deity.

Why ask for more? Our union is above
All earthly unions, ours those heights serene
Where Love alone is Heav'n and Heav'n is Love--
Where never comes the world's harsh breath between
Hope's fruits and flow'rs. Ah, why then earthward move,
Where pure and perfect bliss hath never been?

XIII
CONSTANCY


Ah, Love, I know that to my love thou art,
And must be, in this life, a dream,--a name!
But be it joy or grief, or praise or blame,
I give thee all the worship of my heart.
'Tis not for Love to bid life's cares depart;
Love wings the soul for Heaven whence it came.
Such love from Petrarch's soul did Laura claim,
And Beatrice to Dante did impart.

To thee I turn,--be thou or near or far,
And whether on my love thou frown or smile,--
As, in mid-ocean, to some fairy isle
Palm-crowned; as, in the heav'ns, to eve's bright star
Whose pure white fire allures the vision, while
Myriads of paler lights unnoticed are!

XIV
CALM AFTER STORM


Thou hast but seen what but mine eyes have shown--
Mine eyes that gazing on thee picture Heaven;
Thou hast but heard what but my voice hath given--
My voice that takes from thine a calmer tone.
Ah! couldst thou know all that my heart hath known,
While with Despair's dark phantoms it hath striven--
From faith to doubt, from joy to sorrow driven,
Till rescued and redeemed by Love alone,--

Thou wouldst not marvel were my cloudless brow
O'er-clouded, were my aspect less serene!
Love smiles on Death, unveils his mystery
Of joy and grief, and Love bids me avow
This truth, with chastened heart and tranquil mien,--
'Less pure Love's bliss if less Love's agony.'

XV
THE STAR OF LOVE


Time's cycle rolls--once more I hail the day
On which propitious Heaven sent to Earth,
Disguised in thy fair form, in mortal birth,
The Star of Love, whose pure celestial ray
Glides through the spirit's gloom and lights the way
To bliss! I hail thy coming 'midst the dearth
Of the soul's aspirations, when the worth
Of hearts like thine had ceased men's hearts to sway.

I greet thee, Love, and with thee scale the height,
That cloudless height where winged spirits rest:
Where the deep yearnings of the mortal breast,
From mortal bin set free, reveal to sight
That living Presence, that Eternal Light
In which enwrapt the eager soul is blest.

XVI
IMPRISONED MUSIC


Oh, had I but the poet's voice to sing,
Then would the music prisoned in my heart
(Panting in vain its message to impart)
Hover around thee, Love, on trembling wing,
To tell thee of the soft-eyed hopes that cling
To Love's white feet, the doubts and fears that start
And pierce his bosom with a poisoned dart,--
The smiles that soothe, the cold hard looks that sting!

But 'tis not mine, the soaring joy of Song:
I strive to voice my soul, but strive in vain.
Though passion thrills, and eager fancies throng,
Deckt in the varying hues of joy and pain,
Yet the weak voice--as weak as Love is strong--
Dies murm'ring on Love's throbbing heart again.

XVII
LOVE'S MESSAGE


We will not take Love's name; that little word,
By lips too oft profaned, we will not use.
From Nature's best and loveliest we will choose
Fit symbols for Love's message; like a bird,--
Whose warbled love-notes by its mate are heard
In greenwood glade,--shalt thou in strains profuse
The prisoned music of thy heart unloose,
While my heart's love is by sweet flow'rs averred.

Then take, O take these fresh-awakened flowers,
The symbols of my love, and keep them near,
Where they may feel thy breath and touch thy hand;
Then sing thy songs to me,--in silver showers
Pour forth, thine eager soul, and I shall hear;
Ah, thus will Love Love's message Understand!

XVIII
ECSTASY


The Nightingale upon the Rose's breast
Warbling her tale of life-long sorrow lies,
Till in love's tranced ecstasy her eyes
Close and her throbbing heart is set at rest;
For, to the yielding flow'r her bosom prest,
Death steals upon her in the sweet disguise
Of crowned love and brings what life denies,--
mingling of the souls,--Love's eager quest!

Thus let my heart against thy heart repose,
Sigh forth its life in one delicious sigh,
Then drink new life from out thy balmy breath;
Thus in love's languor let our eyelids close,
And let our blended souls enchanted lie,
And dream of joy beyond the gates of death.

XIX
THE DREAM


Was it a dream, when, through the spirit's gloom,
I saw the yearning face of Beauty shine--
Soft in its human aspect, though divine,
Pleading for human love, though armed with doom?
And was it but a dream, that faint perfume,
Blent of loose tress and soft lips joined to mine,
Those fair white arms that did my neck entwine,
That neck's sweet warmth, that smooth cheek's floral bloom?

Ah! was it true, or was it but a dream
Of bliss that scarce to mortal hearts is given?
Ah! was it thou, Beloved, or some bright
Phantom of thee that made thy presence seem,
Rich with the warmth of Life, the light of Heaven,
To hover o'er the realms where both unite?

XX
ETHEREAL BEAUTY


Nay, it was thou, when the fair Evening Star
Leaned on the purple bosom of the West;
'Twas thou, when o'er the far hills' frowning crest
Fell the soft beams of Cynthia's silv'ry car:
Thyself--than stars and moonbeams fairer far--
A vision in ethereal beauty drest!
But, when thy head drooped flow'r-like on my breast,
Then did no word our souls' communion mar:

Love spake to love without a sign or glance,
And heart to heart its inmost depth revealed
In the deep thrilling silence of that trance,
Till earth, and earthly being ceased to be,
And our blent souls at that high altar kneeled
Whence Love doth gaze upon Eternity!

XXI
A CROWN OF THORNS


There was a crown of thorns upon the head
Of Love, when he across my threshold came.
I knew the sign and did not ask his name,
But took him to my heart, although he said,
'The soul's dumb agonies, the tears unshed
That sear the heart, th' injustice and the blame
Of the harsh world,--God wills that I should claim
Through these immortal Life when Hope is dead.'

I took him to my heart and clasped him close.
E'en though his thorns did make my bosom bleed.
Then from the very core of pain arose
A joy that seemed to be the utmost need
Of my worn soul! Love whispered, '_This_ the meed
Of hearts that keep their faith amidst Love's woes.'

XXII
TWO HEARTS IN ONE


Two hearts made one by Love that cannot die
Whatever life may bring, shall never part;
In life they're one, and e'en in death one heart!
Are we not such, Beloved, thou and I?
Ah, then, why mourn that 'neath another sky,
Far from these longing arms and eyes thou art?
I clasp thee still, and lo! thy lips impart
New life to me as in the days gone by.

I feel thy heart in mine,--our hopes and fears,
Like music's wedded notes, together flow;
Our sighs the same, the same our smiles and tears,--
The selfsame bliss is ours, the selfsame woe.
For Love no weary leagues, no ling'ring years--
Two hearts in one nor time nor distance know.

XXIII
YEARNING


The night is sweet: thy breath is in the air,
I feel it on my face; thy tender eyes
Look love upon me from yon starry skies!
They bring to me, those glancing moonbeams fair,
The shine and ripple of thy silken hair.
And in the silent whispers and the sighs
That from the throbbing heart of Nature rise,
I hear thee, feel thee,--own thy presence there.

Ah, fond deceit!--too soon the heart, unblest,
Unsated, turns from these illusive charms
Back to the haunting dream of heav'n once known:
It pines for those soft eyes, that throbbing breast,
Those sweet life-giving lips, those circling arms--
The breath, the touch, the warmth of Beauty flown.

XXIV
LOVE'S GIFT


I'm far from thee, yet oft our spirits meet:
We share the longings of each other's breast,
And all our joys and sorrows are confest
As though our lips did love's fond tale repeat.
Ah! then thine eyes send forth, mine eyes to greet,
Glances in which thy whole soul is exprest,
Then, like some song-bird flutt'ring in its nest,
I hear thy heart in pulsing cadence beat.

I know its music and I know its thought;
My heart to it th' unuttered words supplies;
I listen to the thrilling melody
Until my soul its subtle tone hath caught.
And then I take it as Love's gift,--it lies
Imprisoned in my own weak poesy!

EPILOGUE

From out the golden dawn of vanished years
She glides into my dreams, a form divine
Of light and love, to soothe the thoughts that pine
For what has been, to stem the tide of tears
That inward flows upon the heart and sears
Its inmost core. Her countenance benign,
Where Love and Pity's chastened graces shine,
Reflects the hallowed light of other spheres.

Then to my anguished soul, with care outworn,
Comes, like a strain on aerial wings upborne,
This message from her soul:--'_Bid sorrow cease;
Love dies not;--'tis th' immortal life above.
And chastened souls, that win eternal peace
Through earthly suff'ring, know that Heaven is Love_!'
 

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