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II.

The red rose is blooming the nightingale sings,
Drunk, mad, with the rapture her loveliness brings;
'Tis the herald of gladness,
Away with your sadness,
Ye who worship the wine till the tavern roof rings.



  ― 210 ―
We repented—our penitence was but a mock;
Though our good resolutions seemed firm as a rock,
Lo! how soon they are scattered,
This wine-glass hath shattered,
All frail as it is, the proud pile by its shock.
Bring wine—in the life that now is our lot;
What is sultan or sentry, the sage or the sot?
From this inn with two portalsnote
We go—we are mortals;
What matters it, then, what roof it has got?
By tears and by toiling our peace must be won,
There is sorrow in all things under the sun;
Cease then from your wailing,
'Tis all unavailing,
For rest cometh only when labour is done.
But the pomp of proud Asaf,note his courser the wind,
And his host of bird-courtiers flying behind—
Well, then, and what of it?
Pray, whom did it profit?
They have vanished for ever—no trace can you find.
Aspire not to honour; rest ye content;
The life that is humblest, calmest is spent;
The arrow that flieth
So proudly, soon lieth
Thick with rust on the earth, its feathers all rent.

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