Hazrat Khwaja Shams-ud-din Muhammad Hafiz -e- Shirazi r.a

Hazrat Khwaja Shams-ud-din Muhammad Hafiz -e- Shirazi r.a – c. 1320 to 1389,  Translations by Daniel Ladinsky  Mazaar Location: IRAN/ Shiraz

All the Hemispheres

Leave the familiar for a while.

Let your senses and bodies stretch out

Like a welcomed season

Onto the meadow and shores and hills.

Open up to the Roof.

Make a new watermark

on your excitement And love.

Like a blooming night flower,

Bestow your vital fragrance of happiness

And giving Upon our intimate assembly.

Change rooms in your mind for a day.

All the hemispheres in existence

Lie beside an equator In your heart.

Greet Yourself In your thousand other forms

As you mount the hidden tide and travel Back home.

All the hemispheres in heaven

Are sitting around a fire Chatting

While stitching themselves together

Into the Great Circle inside of You.


It Felt Love

How Did the rose Ever open its heart

And give to this world All its Beauty?

It felt the encouragement of light

Against its Being, Otherwise,

We all remain Too Frightened.


The Day Sky

Let us be like Two falling stars in the day sky.

Let no one know of our sublime beauty

As we hold hands with God

And burn Into a sacred existence

that defies That surpasses

Every description of ecstasy And love.


Faithful Lover

The moon came to me last night With a sweet question.

She said, “The sun has been my faithful lover For millions of years.

Whenever I offer my body to him Brilliant light pours from his heart. T

housands then notice my happiness And delight in pointing Toward my beauty.

Hafiz, Is it true that our destiny Is to turn into Light Itself?” And I replied,

Dear moon, Now that your love is maturing,

We need to sit together Close like this more often

So I might instruct you How to become Who you Are!


The Subject Tonight is Love

The subject tonight is Love And for tomorrow night as well,

As a matter of fact I know of no better topic

For us to discuss Until we all Die!

A Suspended Blue Ocean

The sky Is a suspended blue ocean. The stars are the fish

That swim. The planets are the white whales

I sometimes hitch a ride on, And the sun and all light

Have forever fused themselves Into my heart and upon

My skin. There is only one rule

On this Wild Playground, For every sign Hafiz has ever seen

Reads the same. They all say, “Have fun, my dear; my dear, have fun,

In the Beloved’s Divine

Game, O, in the Beloved’s

Wonderful Game.”


Becoming Human

Once a man came to me and spoke for hours about

“His great visions of God” he felt he was having. He asked me for confirmation, saying,

“Are these wondrous dreams true?” I replied, “How many goats do you have?” He looked surprised and said,

“I am speaking of sublime visions

And you ask

About goats!” And I spoke again saying,

“Yes, brother – how many do you have?” “Well, Hafiz, I have sixty-two.” “And how many wives?”

Again he looked surprised, then said,

“Four.” “How many rose bushes in your garden,

How many children,

Are your parents still alive,

Do you feed the birds in winter?” And to all he answered. Then I said,

“You asked me if I thought your visions were true,

I would say that they were if they make you become

More human, More kind to every creature and plant

That you know.”


And For No Reason

And For no reason I start skipping like a child. And For no reason I turn into a leaf That is carried so high I kiss the Sun’s mouth And dissolve. And For no reason A thousand birds Choose my head for a conference table, Start passing their Cups of wine And their wild songbooks all around. And For every reason in existence I begin to eternally, To eternally laugh and love! When I turn into a leaf And start dancing, I run to kiss our beautiful Friend And I dissolve in the Truth That I Am.


Dropping Keys

The small man Builds cages for everyone He Knows. While the sage, Who has to duck his head When the moon is low, Keeps dropping keys all night long For the Beautiful Rowdy Prisoners.


It Is not easy To stop thinking ill Of others. Usually one must enter into a friendship With a person Who has accomplished that great feat himself Then Something Might start to rub off on you Of that True Elegance.

If You Don’t Stop That

I used to live in A cramped house with confusion

And pain. But then I met the Friend

And started getting drunk

And singing all

Night. Confusion and Pain

Started acting nasty,

Making threats,

With talk like this, “If you don’t stop ‘that’ -

All that fun – We’re


Damn Thirsty


The fish needs to say, “Something ain’t right about this

Camel ride – And I’m

Feeling so damn Thirsty.”

These Beautiful Love Games

Young lovers wisely say, “Let’s try it from this angle,

Maybe something marvelous will happen, Maybe three suns and two moons

Will roll out

From a hiding place in the body

Our passion has yet to ignite.” Old lovers say,

“We can do it one more time,

How about from this longitude

And latitude – Swinging from a rope tied to the ceiling, Maybe a part of God

Is still hiding in a corner of your heart

Our devotion has yet to reveal.” Bottom line: Do not stop playing

These beautiful



I Want Both Of Us

I want both of us

To start talking about this great love As if you, I, and the Sun were all married

And living in a tiny room, Helping each other to cook,

Do the wash,

Weave and sew,

Care for our beautiful

Animals. We all leave each morning

To labor on the earth’s field.

No one does not lift a great pack. I want both of us to start singing like two

Travelling minstrels

About this extraordinary existence

We share, As if

You, I, and God were all married And living in

A tiny


Like Passionate Lips

There are

So many positions of Love:

Each curve on a branch, the thousand different ways

Your eyes can embrace us, The infinite shapes your

Mind can draw, The spring

Orchestra of scents, The currents of light combusting

Like passionate lips, The revolution of Existence’s skirt

Whose folds contain other worlds, Your every sign that falls against

His inconceivable



Imagination Does Not Exist

You should come close to me tonight wayfarer

For I will be celebrating you. Your beauty still causes me madness,

Keeps the neighbours complaining

When I start shouting in the middle of the night

Because I can’t bear all this joy. I will be giving birth to suns.

I will be holding forests upside down

Gently shaking soft animals from trees and burrows

Into my lap. What you conceive as imagination

Does not exist for me. Whatever you can do in a dream

Or on your mind-canvas My hands can pull – alive – from my coat pocket. But let’s not talk about my divine world. For what I most want to know

Tonight is: All about