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Oh, for corniced palace of Baghdad! not
the palatial cornices of Sindád al-Híra—
It crowns the gardens cascading below,
a virgin unveiled in a perfumed chamber.
Wind plays in the branches. They bend.
Lovers at last coming together.
Her neck necklaced by the river Tigris,
her lord our master our Imám al-Hádi,
Násir, Mansúr, best of caliphs,
who never set out on horseback to war.
God bless him long
as a dove on a swaying bough's cooing,
Long as smiles flash lightning
(and eyes stream like clouds in answer)
From a bride like the sun when the mist parts,
revealing herself luminous in splendor.
Source: Poetry (April 2008)