(Adapted from Ralph Waldo Emerson)
This is a beautiful nature poem. Its essence is that the present day social life with "the maddening crowd's ignoble strife" is not conducive to creating noble feelings or knowledge of God in Man. These virtues can be acquired only in the bosom of nature. The climax is attained in the last verse. See Appendix I, No. 24 for Ralph Waldo Emerson.
Farewell O worldly companions! I am going to my homeland
I am feeling unhappy in this well‑populated wilderness
I am very much dejected, unsuitable for assemblies I am
Neither you are suitable for me nor suitable for you I am
The king's audience and the minister's bed-chamber each is a prison
The golden chain's prisoner will break himself free from this prison
Though much pleasure is in embellishing your assembly
But some kind of strangeness is in your acquaintance
I remained long in company of your self‑centered people
I remain restless for long like the waves of the ocean
I remained long in your luxury gatherings
I remained long searching for light in the darkness
I searched long for the rose' sight among thorns
Ah! I have not found that Yusuf in your market place 1
The perplexed eye for another scene is searching
As storm-stricken my eye for coast is searching
Leaving your garden like fragrance I am going
Farewell ! O worldly company I am going to the homeland
I have made my home in the quietness of the mountain side
Ah! I do not get this pleasure in conversation's music!
Associate of Nargis-i-Shahlah2, and rose's companion I am
The garden is my homeland, nightingale's associate I am
The sound of the spring's music lulls me to sleep
The morning cuckoo from the green carpet wakes me up
Everyone in the world assemblage social life likes
The poet's heart but the solitude's corner likes
I am verged on lunacy by being perturbed in habitations3
For whom I am searching, roaming in the mountain valleys?
Whose love makes me roam in the meadows?
And makes me sleep on the spring's banks?
You taunt me that fond of the corner of retirement I am
Look O imprudent one! Messenger of Nature's assembly I am
Compatriot of the elms, turtle‑dove's confidante I am!
In this garden's silence in the state of anxiety I am!
If I do hear something it is only to tell others
If I do see something it is only to show others
My heart is a lover of retirement, proud of my home I am
Scoffing at the thrones of Dara 4 and Sikandar 5 I am
How enchanting is the act of lying under the trees
As now and then my sight falls at the evening star
Where in the strange house of learning can this be seen!
The secret of universe can only in the rose‑petal be seen
1. This alludes to the Holy Qur’«n 12:19, in which the sale of S. Yësuf A.S. has been described. He possessed both material and spiritual beauty, which has become proverbial in Islamic literature. Looking for and not getting S. Yësuf A.S. is metaphorically used for searching for and failing to find some invaluable object such as knowledge.
2. Nargis-i-Shahlah The narcissus which is reddish-blue instead of white or yellow. Nargis-i-Shahlah is invaluable on account of being very rare.
3. The word used in the original is Junën which means lunacy. It is commonly used in Urdu and Persian for ardent love.
4. D«r«- See Appendix I, No. 22.
5. Sikandar‑ See Appendix I, No. 6.
These two kings are considered to be the mightiest monarchs of the ancient world. This expression shows the indifference of ‘All«mah Iqb«l to material glory as a Man of Faith should be.