The Book Of The Thousand Nights And A Night, Vol 1 Page-255

The Book Of The Thousand Nights And A Night, Vol 1

A plain and literal translation of the arabian nights entertainments

When it was the Twenty-sixth Night, She said, It hath reached me, O auspicious King, that the young merchant continued, When I entered and took a seat, the lady at once came in crowned with a diadem[FN#533] of pearls and jewels; her face dotted with artificial moles in indigo,[FN#534] her eyebrows pencilled with Kohl and her hands and feet reddened with Henna. When she saw me she smiled in my face and took me to her embrace and clasped me to her breast; then she put her mouth to my mouth and sucked my tongue[FN#535] (and I did likewise) and said, “Can it be true, O my little darkling, thou art come to me?” adding, “Welcome and good cheer to thee! By Allah, from the day I saw thee sleep hath not been sweet to me nor hath food been pleasant.” Quoth I, “Such hath also been my case: and I am thy slave, thy negro slave.” Then we sat down to converse and I hung my head earthwards in bashfulness, but she delayed not long ere she set before me a tray of the most exquisite viands, marinated meats, fritters soaked in bee’s[FN#536] honeys and chickens stuffed with sugar and pistachio nuts, whereof we ate till we were satisfied. Then they brought basin and ewer and I washed my hands and we scented ourselves with rose water musk’d and sat down again to converse. So she began repeating these couplets[FN#537]: “Had we wist of thy coming, thy way had been strewn With the blood of our heart and the balls of our sight: Our cheek as a foot cloth to greet thee been thrown, That thy step on our eyelids should softly alight.” And she kept plaining of what had befallen her and I of what had betided me; and love of her got so firm hold of my heart that all my wealth seemed a thing of naught in comparison with her. Then we fell to toying and groping and kissing till night fall, when the handmaidens set before us meats and a complete wine service, and we sat carousing till the noon of night, when we lay down and I lay with her; never in my life saw I a night like that night. When morning morrowed I arose and took leave of her, throwing under the carpet bed the kerchief wherein were the dinars[FN#538] and as I went out she wept and said, “O my lord, when shall I look upon that