1 Should the King come .. 9
2 Do not find fault with me
for the love that is mine 39
3 What you must give 64
4 What makes a Persian? 83
5 Whether I am good or bad 98
6 Seek not water, seek thirst 111
7 . . . and I am a new wayfarer 128
When I was quite small, my mother often took me to the
hammam (baths). There, women would come to wash our
hair or our backs and, to keep the little children amused,
always had a store of poems and songs. One of these
women, as she rubbed me, would sing softly:
To whom shall we give this girl?
No ordinary man shall she wed!
Should the King come with his army, his Minister in his train,
Perhaps she will not be wed . . .
I wonder if that woman remembers cradling the child
who, one day, became the wife of her King? I did not
forget. All unknowing, it was a part of my future that she