The circle of the sky metes out my glory,
The libraries of the East contend for my poems,
Emirs seek me out to fill my mouth with gold,
Angels already know by heart my latest ghazal.
My working tools are humiliation and an anguish;
Would to God I’d been stillborn.
From the Divan of Abulcasim El Hadrami (12th century)
[From Dreamtigers, by Jorge Luis Borges, translated by Harold Morland]