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The Rubaiyat of Omar Khayam

These selected stanzas from The Rubaiyat of Omar Khavam of Naishapur, by Edward Fitzgerald, provide an example of how a one literary piece can provide a setting for another. As you read these, consider how they relate to Edwin Arlington Robinson's "Mr. Flood's Party."

VII
Come fill the Cup, and in the fire of Spring
Your Winter-garment of Repentance fling:
The Bird of Time has but a little way
To flutter--and the Bird is on the Wing.

XII
A Book of Verses underneath the Bough,
A Jug of Wine, a Loaf of Bread--and Thou
Beside me singing in the Wilderness-
Oh, Wilderness were Paradise enow!

XXII
For some we loved, the loveliest and the best
That from his Vintage rolling Time hath pressed,
Have drunk their Cup a Round or two before,
And one by one crept silently to rest.

XXX
What, without asking, hither hurried Whence?
And, without asking, Whither hurried hence!
Oh, many a Cup of this forbidden Wine
Must drown the memory of that insolence!

LXIII
Oh threats of Hell and Hopes of Paradise!
One thing at least is certain--This Life flies;
One thing is certain and the rest is Lies;
The Flower that once has blown for ever dies.

LXXI
The Moving Finger writes; and, having writ,
Moves on: nor all your Piety nor Wit
Shall lure it back to cancel half a Line,
Nor all your Tears wash out a Word of it.

LXXIV
YESTERDAY This Day's Madness did prepare;
TOMORROW"S Silence, Triumph, or Despair:
Drink! for you know not whence you came, nor why;
Drink! for you know not why you go, nor where.

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