Letter to Nizami from Mahsati (1945)
by Mirvarid Dilbazi (1912-2001)

You, sincere friend of my sorrowful dreams,
The grief of my soul is like an ocean
without a coast...
Separation is grieving me in these strange lands
As I am too far from my loved ones.

You inspire us with your beauty,
You cast light on ignorance and evil.
Your mind resembles the age-old wisdom
of the world,
Yet, in fact, you are as young and fresh
as the new moon.

But the court is like a grave
for both poetry and poet.
Every boat sailing in these waters has gone down,
We have drowned, so you be watchful.
Don't trust the times­the times have changed,

What you see in the ocean is not water, but blood.
Be careful not to sink in this golden blood.
When shahs become aware of a master's might,
They entrap him in their palaces.

And whoever doesn't want to be entrapped,
Whoever maintains a distance from shahs,
Whoever forgets about being slave for shahs
Will face either death or exile!

You, the morning sun!
Remember, some day
When your warm rays
Are warming the cold earth, kissing it,
The palace will ensnare you.
But don't forget that impetuous waters
Will soon break the dikes.
You are the sun, don't let clouds cover your face.

Distance yourself from palaces, away from fame.
The world of courts is just ruins,
It contains only eye-cheating luxury.
This is an admonition, take heed.

My dear, Nizami, when repeating your name,
Generations will sense your magnificence.
Fill your basin from the earth's spring.
I'm leaving, good-bye to all of you,

Live, create, love and grow old!
My fate took me away from you,
My hand remained outstretched for my friends,
My hair grew gray because of sorrows.
If I die somewhere far from Ganja,
Please, dig my grave in my Motherland.
And write these words on my gravestone:
"A star fell from the sky, but the sun rose,
So what that Mahsati died, Nizami is still living."

Translated by Aynur Hajiyeva

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