Belânu and Iltani - Part 5

Iltani has sent me a tiny rose,
Tinier than her little ear
Which is so small, so small
That I fear my great love can never,
Never all be poured into it!
Iltani has sent me a rose,
A little, little rose,
Yet so great has she made it seem to me
By the magic of her graciousness,
That it shuts out heaven and earth,
It shuts out everything to me
But the face of Iltani,
The lovely, lovely face of Iltani,
Which by the magic of her graciousness,
She has imprinted on the heart of the rose she sent me.

For the rose that Iltani sent me,
For the tiny rose greater than heaven and earth
I will have made a cylinder of crystal,
Of crystal clear and pure as Iltani's heart, —
I will have a cylinder of purest, clearest crystal
Split in twain and hollowed delicately,
And between the halves of this crystal
I will place the rose that Iltani sent;
I will cause the King's jeweller
To rivet the halves together again
With bands of finest gold,
With bands of gold of Ophir
Rich as my love for Iltani
And with studdings of male rubies
Fiery as my love for Iltani
And with sparks of elmêshu
Lasting as my love for Iltani.

And this crystal,
Whose heart will be the rose of Iltani,
I will cause to be made into a seal,
Into a most precious seal of love
For sealing the love that I bear unto Iltani;
Our names shall be mingled upon it,
Together with the names of Ishtar and Tammuz,
Mingled in deep engravure,
That neither Time nor the jealous Gods,
Nor Fate, nor Iltani herself
Can ever efface!
Such shall be the chief seal of Belânu
Which he will wear about his neck forever,
Even in the dark Cave of Arala!

Ah, small rose, sweet rose,
Rose of the rose Iltani!
When she sent you to Belânu,
When she sent you to me from the altar of Irnini,
Did she know,
Did she remember
That another name of Irnini is Ishtar?
Does she know,
Does she remember
That Ishtar is the goddess of love?
You have cast out Ti'u and his fever, darling rose,
But you cannot cast out the fever of love
For you come from the altar of Ishtar,
From the hands of Iltani!

What is this you are saying, dearest rose, —
Rose of Iltani and Ishtar?
Is it indeed you that are speaking
In a voice sweet and faint as your fragrance?
Verily the rose is speaking!
Thus saith the rose:
" Send a message to Iltani,
From me, the rose offered to Ishtar,
Send a message to Iltani
From Ishtar who told it to me
As I lay upon her altar,
Say there is another rose to be offered,
Another rose to be offered by Iltani
To Ishtar,
And this other rose is Iltani herself! "

Verily I will obey you, rose of Ishtar,
Rose of Iltani,
The message shall go straightway
To that lady, the rose Iltani!
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