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The Tarjuman al-Ashwaq, by Ibn al-Arabi, tr. Reynold A. Nicholson, [1911], at


1. (My goal is) the corniced palace of Baghdád, not the corniced palace of Sindád, 1

2. The city set like a crown above the gardens, as though she were a bride who has been unveiled in the most fragrant chamber.

3. The wind plays with the branches and they are bent, and ’tis as though the twain had plighted troth with one another.

4. Meseems, Tigris is the string of pearls on her neck, and her spouse is our lord, the Imám who guides aright,

5. He who gives victory and is made victorious, the best of Caliphs, who in war does not mount on horseback.

6. God bless him! as long as a ringdove perched on a swaying bough shall moan for him,

7. And likewise as long as the lightnings shall flash of

p. 143

smiling mouths, for joy of which morning-showers flowed from mine eyes,

8. The mouths of virgins like the sun when the mists have withdrawn and when it shines forth clearly with most luminous radiance.


1. 'The corniced palace of Baghdád,' i.e. the presence of the Quṭb.

'The corniced palace of Sindád,' i.e. the kingdom of this world.

3. 'The wind plays with the branches,' i.e. the aspirations attach themselves to the Divine Self-subsistence, which inclines towards them.

4. 'Tigris,' i.e. the station of life.

'The Imám,' i.e. the Quṭb.

5. 'Who in war,' etc., i.e. he has quitted the body and taken his stand on the spiritual essence by which he is related to God.

6. 'A ringdove,' etc., i.e. the soul confined in the body.

7. 'As long as the lightnings,' etc., referring to the glories of Divine contemplation.


142:1 The second hemistich of this verse is borrowed from the verses of al-Aswad b. Ya‘fur (MufA.Dḍaliyyát, ed. by Thorbecke, p. 52, 8-9; Bakrí, ed. by Wüstenfeld, 105):


Sindád was a palace of Ḥíra.

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