Mask thy wisdom with delight, Toy with the bow, yet hit the white, As Jelaleddin old and gray; He seemed to bask, to dream and play Without remoter hope or fear Than still to entertain his ear And pass the burning summer-time In the palm-grove with a rhyme; Heedless that each cunning word Tribes and ages overheard: Those idle catches told the laws Holding Nature to her cause. God only knew how Saadi dined; Roses he ate, and drank the wind; He freelier breathed beside the pine, In cities he was low and mean; The mountain waters washed him clean And by the sea-waves he was strong; He heard their medicinal song, Asked no physician but the wave, No palace but his sea-beat cave. Saadi held the Muse in awe, She was his mistress and his law; A twelvemonth he could silence hold, Nor ran to speak till she him told; He felt the flame, the fanning wings, Nor offered words till they were things, Glad when the solid mountain swims In music and uplifting hymns. Charmed from fagot and from steel, Harvests grew upon his tongue, Past and future must reveal All their heart when Saadi sung; Sun and moon must fall amain Like sower's seeds into his brain, There quickened to be born again. The free winds told him what they knew, Discoursed of fortune as they blew; Omens and signs that filled the air To him authentic witness bare; The birds brought auguries on their wings, And carolled undeceiving things Him to beckon, him to warn; Well might then the poet scorn To learn of scribe or courier Things writ in vaster character; And on his mind at dawn of day Soft shadows of the evening lay.