The Musical Composition Called "Zavil-Ashiran" [Zâvîl-`Ashîrân yîn-é Sharîf]1

[Mevlevi Composer: Cinuçen TanrIkorur (1938-2000)

FIRST SALâM (Birinci selâm)

from a Persian ghazal:

Lift the veil, O life of (my) soul and my soul-increaser! (O) grief-removing (friend), companion, and my close friend in the nights!

O (you) who hear the wails from my body, timely and unimely! O (you) who cast a fire into all the parts of my (being)!

. . . .
Tonight is (one) of the nights of solitude, (so) show some mercy (and) come, so that tonight I may read to you my book of passionate longing!2

parda bar dâr ay Hayât-é jân-o jân-afzây-é man
gham-gosâr-o ham-neshîn-o mûnis-é shab-hây-é man

ay shenîda waqt-o bê-waqt az wujûd-am nâl-hâ
ay fekanda âteshê dar jumla-yî ajzây-é man

emshab az shab-hây-é tanhâ'î-st raHmê kon be-y-â
tâ be-khwân-am bar tô emshab daftar-é sawdây-é man

[by Jalâluddîn Rûmî, Dîwân-é Kabîr, ghazal 1963]
[Meter 8: XoXX XoXX XoXX XoX]
(for the 23 meters, see

from a Persian ghazal:

O world of water and clay!3 Ever since I have known you, I have known a hundred thousand miseries, pains, and trials.
. . . .
The branch goes high because it has come from above; I run toward my origin because I have known (my) origin.

ay jahân-é âb-o gel, tâ man to-râ be-sh'nâkht-am
Sad hazâr-ân miHnat-o ranj-o balâ be-sh'nâkht-am

shâkh bâlâ z-ân raw-ad z-î-râ ze-bâlâ âmad-ast
sôy-é aSl-é khwêsh tâz-am k-aSl-râ be-sh'nâkht-am

[by Jalâluddîn Rûmî, Dîwân-é Kabîr, ghazal 1585]
[Meter 8]

from a Persian ghazal:

(My) tongue (is) deficient from counting Your generosity of which "you cannot count."4 My tongue (has) given thanks for Your exalted sun.

(We ask) pardon for our faults, since our faults (are) so many. (We offer) gratitude for Your blessings, since Your blessings (are) so many!

ay zabân qâSir ze `add-é jûd-é lâ tuHSây-é tô
k-ay zabân-am shukr karda dar khwor-é `alây-é tô

`uzr-é taqSîr-ât-é mâ chandân ke taqSîr-ât-é mâ
shukr-é ni`mat-hây-é tô chandân ke ni`mat-hây-é tô
[Meter 8]

SECOND SALâM (Ikinci selâm)

from a Persian ghazal:

You are my sultan,5 you are my sultan. In6 my heart and soul, you are my faith.

(When) you breathe into me, I become alive. What is7 (the worth of just) one soul?--(since) you are a hundred times8 my soul.

sulTân-é man-î, sulTân-é man-î
andar del-o jân, îmân-é man-î

dar man be-dam-î, man zenda shaw-am
yak jân che bow-ad, sad jân-é man-î

[by Jalâluddîn Rûmî, Dîwân-é Kabîr, ghazal 3137, lines 33573-74]
[From Mixed Meters: XX ooX XX ooX]

from a Persian ghazal:

O silvery chinned one, O stony-hearted one, O tulip-clothed one: be pleased with a glance at my heart nourished by (longing) sorrow.9

Even if this worn-down bodily form (of mine) is far from your lane, (my) heart is at your door by night and by day.

sîmîn-Zaqan-â, sang-del-â, lâla-iZâr-â
khwosh kon ba-negâhê del-é gham-parwar-é mâ-râ

în qâlib-é farsûda gar az kôy-é tô dûr-ast
al-qalbu `alà bâbika layl-ân wa nahârâ

THIRD SALâM (üçuncü selâm)

from a Persian ghazal:

Since all my friends departed and I was left alone, (from) moment to moment I kept calling the Friend of those who remain in solitude.

(Since) all (my) friends rose up like images in front of me, I placed the image of my (true) Friend in front of me.

chûn hama yâr-ân-é mâ raft-and-o tanhâ mând-êm
yâr-é tanhâ-mânda-gân-râ dam-ba-dam mê-khwând-êm

jumla yâr-ân chûn khayâl az pêsh-i mâ bar khâst-and
mâ khayâl-é yâr-é khwod-râ pêsh-i khwod be-n'shând-êm

from a Turkish ghazal:

Oh, a thousand praises for a sultan as this! (For) those who are his
slaves become kings and emperors.

Today, whoever trustingly humbles himself before Walad10 will, if
a poor man, become a prince (and) if a prince, will become a

ey ki hezar âferin bu nice sultan olur
kulu olan kiSiler hüsrevü hâkan olur

her ki bugün Velede inanuben yüz süre
yoksul ise bay olur bay ise sultan olur

[by Shamsuddîn AHmad Aflâkî, d. 1353]12

from a Persian rubâ`î:

What can a lover do but show humility?
What can he do but come (in the) nights to your lane?
Don't be upset if he gives your curls a kiss,
(For) what can a crazy person do but bite at chains?13

`âshiq ke tawaZu` na-nomây-ad che kon-ad
shab-hâ ke ba-kôy-é tô nay-ây-ad che kon-ad
gar bôsa deh-ad zolf-é to-râ Tîra ma-shaw
dêwâna ke zanjîr na-khay-ad che kon-ad

[by Jalâluddîn Rûmî: Dîwân-é Kabîr, rubâ`î no. 713]

from a Persian ghazal:
Oh, due to Love and its states,
My heart was burned up by its passions.
There is no glance of (my) eye toward (anyone) other than you--
I swear by God and His signs!

âhi mini 'l-`ishqi wa Hâl-âti-hi
aHraqa qalb-î bi-Harâr-âti-hi

mâ naZara 'l-`ayni 'ilà ghayri-kum
uqsimu bi-'llâhi wa âyâti-hi

from a Persian ghazal:

Come master, come, come master one more time! (It is) time for praise, time for praise. Come, O vagabond moon!

(O) my friend, my (companion in the) cave,14 my heart-consuming love! You are your friend, you are your (companion in the) cave, (O) my glance-scattering master!

khwâja be-y-â, khwâja be-y-â, khwâja degar bârê be-y-â
daf`-é madîH, daf`-é madîH, ay mah-é `ayyârî be-y-â

yâr-é ma-râ, gâr-é ma-râ, `ishq-é jegar-khwâr-é ma-râ
yâr-é tôy-î, gâr-é tôy-î, khwâja negah-bâr-é ma-râ

FOURTH SALâM (Dördüncü selâm)

from a Persian ghazal:

You are my sultan,15 you are my sultan. In my heart and soul, you
are my faith.

(When) you breathe into me, I become alive. What is (the worth of
just) one soul? --(since) you are a hundred times my soul.

sulTân-é man-î, sulTân-é man-î
w-andar del-o jân, îmân-é man-î

dar man be-dam-î, man zenda shaw-am
yak jân che shaw-ad, sad jân-é man-î

[by Jalâluddîn Rûmî, Dîwân-é Kabîr, ghazal 3137, lines 33573-74]

--translated from Persian, Arabic, and Turkish by Ibrahim Gamard
Ibrahim Gamard (translation, footnotes, & transliteration), 7/12


1Zâvîl: a composite musical mode, or maqâm/makam that starts with the makam zâvîl followed by the makam `ashîrân.

2passionate longing [sawdâ]: these verses express the yearning of the spiritual disciple to be in the presence of the spiritual master, who encourages the increase of such yearning which is, ultimately, for God.

3world of water and clay: a reference to the human body and the material world.

4"you cannot count" [lâ tuHSâ]: from Qur'ân 16:18, altered [from lâ tuHSû-hâfor metrical purposes.

5You are my sultan: means both Shams-é Tabrîzî, and on a higher level, God alone, the Only Beloved. It is a characteristic of Persian sufi poetry to be ambiguous in such a way as to refer both to the human beloved and the Divine Beloved. "When you breathe into me" is a reference to when God breathed into Adam of His spirit (Qur'an 15:29).

6In: this is "And in" [w-andar] in the earliest manuscripts of the Divan (see Foruzanfar's edition).

7What is [che shaw-ad]: this is "che bow-ad" in the earliest manuscripts of the Divan (see Foruzanfar's edition).

8a hundred times: an idiom meaning a great many.

9my heart nourished by longing sorrow: the lover's role in Persian poetry is to suffer from the pain of separation from and of yearning for the beloved, while the beloved's role is to be comfortable, luxurious, and aloof.

10Walad: a word play on the name of Rumi's son and successor, Sultan Walad, or Veled. The literal sense of this line is: "whoever trustingly rubs his head (on the ground in surrendered obeisance) to Walad."

11will become a sultan: means a "spiritual king."

12Aflaki: the first and last lines from a ghazal by Shamsuddîn AHmad Aflâkî. The entire poem occurs at the end of Golpinarli's book, "Mevlânâ'dan sonra Mevlevilik" in a section called "Samples of Mevlevi (Turkish) Poetry," where he includes four poems by Aflaki.

13bite at chains: crazy people used to be tied to chains during perioids of madness to protect them from themselves and others.

14(O) my friend, my (companion in the) cave [yâr-é ma-râ, gâr-é ma-râ]: means, "You are a friend like Abu Bakr," who helped the Prophet Muhammad escape from Mecca by hiding in a cave wth him, and who was therefore called in Persian, "Companion of the Cave" [yâr-é gâr].

15You are my Sultan: see notes from the second salâm.