Poetry Explorer- Classic Contemporary Poetry, PEARLS OF THE FAITH: 23. AL-KHAFIZ, by EDWIN ARNOLD



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PEARLS OF THE FAITH: 23. AL-KHAFIZ, by             Poet's Biography
First Line: Heard ye of nimrud? Cities fell before him
Last Line: Mighty thou art, and none beside.
Variant Title(s): Nimrud And The Gnat
Subject(s): God; Islam


Al-Khâfiz! the "Abaser!" praise hereby
Him who doth mock at earthly majesty.

Heard ye of Nimrûd? Cities fell before him;
Shinar, from Accad to the Indian Sea,
His garden was; as God, men did adore him;
Queens were his slaves, and kings his vassalry.

Eminent on his car of carvon brass,
Through foeman's blood nave-deep he drave his wheel;
And not a lion in the river-grass,
Could keep its shaggy fell from Nimrûd's steel.

But he scorned Allah, schemed a tower to invade Him;
Dreamed to scale Heaven, and measure might with God;
Heaped high the foolish clay wherefrom We made him,
And built thereon his seven-fold house of the clod.

Therefore, the least Our messengers among,
We sent;—a gray gnat dancing in the reeds:
Into his ear she crept, buzzing,—and stung.
So perished mighty Nimrûd and his deeds.
Oh, Thou Abaser of all pride!
Mighty Thou art, and none beside.





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