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Rahil's Calon Lily Scroll

Behold the beauty of desert’s sweetest bloom.

She weaves rich patterns disdaining use of loom.

By practiced art she plies her chosen craft,

And gathers every eye within the room


We praise her grace, the passion of her heart

And willingness all secrets to impart

At Rahil’s deeds is Falcon’s Realm in awe

She proved the Persian dance most noble art.


She by careful skill all viewers doth entrance

Through thoughtful plan no step is left to chance

That others might tread path lit by her torch

With open hand she shares the lore of dance.


For she would each new student ably train

In burning sun or Lilies’ driving rain

Building up the riches of her craft

Scanting her own purse by lack of gain.


Rahil al-Sirhaan by Shah is summoned now

Before the Calon Crown must dancer bow

And then arise, more lofty state to claim

All granted rights she bears, Our Royal Vow.


So Hirsch the Calon Shah does at this very hour

With Magdalena, Khanumshah, use Royal Power

To praise the deeds of Rahil al-Sirhaan

And mark her work with Calon Lily flower.


May she who’s marked by wolf be praiséd high

And with Our Royal Will henceforth comply

Since wolf’s howl only sounds when she’s at dance,

May Our valleys often echo with its cry.


Let he who gainsays this face Judgment dire:

His lying tongue be burned in endless fire

We do this on third and twenty day of Dej,

Year two score and four in Tall Stones’ Shire.



This is based on the Fitzgerald translation of The Rubáiyát of Omar Khayyám.

The poetic form probably bears more connection to 19th century Britain, than the 12th century Persian in which it was written. 


The next to last quatrain refers to the ulualtion, which according to my source, Rahil properly uses only while dancing.  Hence we ask her to dance often.


In the Persian calendar, the month of Dej corresponds with January.


( 7 comments — Leave a comment )
Jan. 25th, 2010 02:13 am (UTC)
In the Persian calendar, the month of Dej corresponds with January.

Not quite. That's like saying that the month of January corresponds with Aquarius. Dej and January overlap, but yesterday was the third day of bahman (Persian months aren't capitalized) 1388.

Otherwise, a terrific text --the king squirmed a bit when the "lying tongue" bit was read-- and very well-received.

Edited at 2010-01-25 02:18 am (UTC)
Jan. 26th, 2010 05:37 pm (UTC)
Latin translation, oh god of latin:

"Anything worth doing is worth overdoing"
Jan. 26th, 2010 06:32 pm (UTC)
Quid dignum agendi etiam dignum superiaciendi est.

Jan. 27th, 2010 02:29 pm (UTC)
thank you!
Sep. 24th, 2012 01:01 am (UTC)
Was this text translated or transliterated into Farsi?
Sep. 24th, 2012 02:22 pm (UTC)
Not that I am aware of. I was not present when the scroll was presented.

It was somewhat of a rush job. I had been approached to do it in November, but begged off as I knew nothing of Persian poetic style. At Kris Kinder, I was reapproached, bought a copy of the translation referenced above, spent a lttle time talking with Lucian to get some "Meat for the bones", and then wrote it fairly quickly after that.

I do not consider myself at all knowledgible about Persian literature, and know nothing about the language.
Sep. 24th, 2012 03:23 pm (UTC)
Ok, thanks for the info! I am trying to decide how possible it will be for me to write and translate a scroll (since my Farsi is not good enough to write a poem, I can only do that in German and Hebrew). I love persian poetry and am working on writing in the rhyming couplet form of Nizami. I am also wanting to convince the illuminator to paint in a Rumi poem about ecstatic dance as if it were s line from the Qoran (I wish I were more artistic and could do it myself... without a newborn, maybe I would try to teach myself muslim religious calligraphy, but....).

Edited at 2012-09-24 03:33 pm (UTC)
( 7 comments — Leave a comment )



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