Ḥú-I_‘Ujáb

(TABLET OF THE WOUNROUS MAIDEN)

The hallowed Beauty shone resplendent from behind the veil. How wondrous a thing, how wondrous indeed!

And, lo, the flame of rapture caused all souls to swoon away. How wondrous is this, how wondrous indeed!

Rising up, they soared unto the blest pavilion ’neath the throne of heaven’s canopy. How wondrous a mystery, how wondrous indeed!

Say: The Maiden of Eternity unveiled Her face—may her wondrous beauty be exalted indeed!

Shedding forth from earth to heaven its resplendent rays. How wondrous a light, how wondrous indeed!

A lightning glance She cast, as piercing as a shooting star—how wondrous Her glance, how wondrous indeed!

A glance consuming every name and every title in its flames. How wondrous a feat, how wondrous indeed!

To the dwellers of the realm of dust She turned Her gaze. How wondrous Her gaze, how wondrous indeed!

And then did all creation shake and pass away. How astounding a death, how astounding indeed!

She then let fall a raven lock, an ornament of spirit in the darkest night—how wondrous a hue, how wondrous indeed!

From which the fragrant breezes of the spirit were perceived. How wondrous a scent, how wondrous indeed!

In Her right hand She bore the ruby wine and in Her left a portion of the finest fare. How wondrous a grace, how wondrous indeed!

With hands encrimsoned with Her ardent lovers’ blood—how wondrous is this, how wondrous indeed!

In cups and chalices She passed round the wine of life. How wondrous a draught, how wondrous indeed!

With harp and lute She sang in praise of Her Beloved. How wondrous a song, how wondrous indeed!

Whereat the hearts were melted in consuming flames. How wondrous a love, how wondrous indeed!

Of Her sustaining beauty She bestowed a boundless share—how wondrous a share, how wondrous indeed!

Then brought Her sword of charm upon Her lovers’ necks. How wondrous a blow, how wondrous indeed!

Her pearl-like teeth did flash, no sooner had She smiled. How wondrous a pearl, how wondrous indeed!

Whereat the hearts of them that know cried out and wept. How wondrous a piety, how wondrous indeed!

But they that doubt and boast of self denied Her truth. How astounding a denial, how astounding indeed!

And, hearing this, in sorrow, She repaired to Her abode. How astounding Her grief, how astounding indeed!

She returned from whence She came: How lofty were the steps She traced! How astounding a decree, how astounding indeed!

She cried a cry of anguish, as to reduce all things to naught. How astounding Her woe, how astounding indeed!

And from Her lips there streamed these words of warning and rebuke—how astounding a stream, how astounding indeed!

“Why do ye gainsay Me, O people of the Book?” How astounding is this, how astounding indeed!

“Claim ye to be the guided and the loved ones of the Lord?” By God! How astounding a lie, how astounding indeed!

“O my friends,” She said, “We shall not come again,”—how wondrous a return, how wondrous indeed!

“But will conceal God’s secrets in His Scriptures and His Books,” as bidden by One mighty and bounteous indeed!

“Nor shall ye find Me till the Promised One appear on Judgement Day.” By My life! How astounding an abasement, how astounding indeed!

OV