The Words Of The Candle | Naim Frashëri

Here among you have I risen,
And aflame am I now blazing,
Just a bit of light to give you,
That I change your night to daytime

I’ll combust and I will wither,
Be consumed and be extinguished,
Just to give you brightness, vision,
That you notice one another

For you will I fade and tarnish,
Of me there will be no remnant,
I will burn, in tears lamenting,
My desire I cannot suffer.

Of the fire I am not fearful,
I will never be extinguished
If I burn of my desire,
Try to shine as best I’m able.

When you see that I have vanished,
Do not think that I have perished,
I’m alive, among the living,
In the rays of truth I’m standing

In your souls do I take refuge,
Do not think I’m stranger to you,
Patience was bestowed upon me,
Thus I glow with steadfast courage

Doing good is all I long for,
That you not remain in darkness.
Forward now and gather ’round me
Talk, smile, eat, drink and make merry

Love within my soul is harboured,
Yes, for mankind am I burning,
Let me melt and let me smoulder,
To grow cold I do not wish for.

Let my wretched corpse be consumed
For our true God the Almighty,
May my lungs scorch, charred to ashes,
For mankind I’ll melt and vanish

With me all man’s joys I’ll carry,
Bear them to the Lord Almighty.
Humanity is what I long for,
Goodness, gentleness and wisdom

If you’ll with me be companions?
If you’ll love me as I love you,
If you all love one another,
Work not for the Prince of Darkness.

Venture towards me, fleeting heart, do
Come, approach this fire a little!
Though the flame may singe your wings, it’s
Sure to sanctify your spirit.

With the torch that here consumes me
I the eyes of men have opened,
Been of them a true companion.
I do know them, they do know me

I’ve observed them all in passing,
Mothers, kith and kin, and fathers,
All of them are my concern still,
All who lived here on this planet

Even now I see them ‘mongst you,
For I recognize their spirits.
I, like you, have changed, transfigured,
Changed and altered my companions

Many times have I turned into
Earth and wind and fire and water.
I’m a spark come from the heavens,
From the sun I’m glowing embers

Through the skies I fly, a-soaring,
And live deep within the ocean,
Often in the soil I sleep or
Take my rest in fruits and honey

I’m a suckling lamb or kid goat,
Flower, grass or leaves a-sprouting,
So much do I have to tell you,
Yet I fear my speech will fail me.

What’s the point to put to paper
Words this flickering tongue’s inspired?

Naim bey Frashëri (1846-1900) was a major protagonist of Albanian independence the end of the nineteenth century and is regarded by many as the Albanian national poet. Frashëri was also a member and supporter of the Bektashi religious community, a progressive Shia Islamic dervish sect that became very popular in Albania, and still is. 
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