Another treat from Benny’s The Illustrated Omar Khayyam. I love most of Benny’s illustrations, but some grab my attention more than others. I found this one especially striking. Details about Benny’s new translation.
Those of you who follow Benny’s blog and his Rubaiyat blog know that he has been working on a new translation of the Rubaiyat. It is now complete and includes fifty water-color illustrations by Benny.
What is the secret of the astounding success of Omar Khayyam? Was it because he made a philosophy of wine, advocating, ‘Eat, drink and be merry’? Or was it mystic wine?
This colour plate does not find place in the book.)
For those who are interested in Omar Khayyam my version shall certainly resonate as true to the original. Imagine the pleasure of reading him for the first time? Eight hundred years later you can relive the pleasure his quatrains first produced among his readers.
“In the ten sections of his book, Benny Thomas has composed his own Khayyāmasque quatrains covering most of the central and salient features of Khayyāmian themes. Whether it is in the chapter titled “Cup of Wine” or “Love Feast,” the essence of Omar Khayyām’s Rubā‘iyyāt is echoed in the poems of Benny Thomas. For those interested in a mystical reading of Khayyām’s quatrains, this collection of poems provides an invaluable insight…” (Selected from the Foreword by Prof. Mehdi Aminrazavi the author of The Wine of Wisdom.)
Unravel the Khayyam vs Fitzgerald tangle with Benny’s Introductory essay-Rubaiyat
For those who have come to accept Omar Khayyam’s the Rubáiyát from the translation of Edward Fitzgerald my quatrains may come as a disappointment. The reclusive Victorian poet- scholar took great liberties with the original and yet created a standard by which the work of Omar Khayyam has ever since come to be compared. It is an irony. It so happens that according to the adage ‘finders keepers, and losers weepers’ Omar Khayyam long neglected in his own country and treated with scorn, reason for which one may guess, required help from unexpected quarters to reinstate his reputation for posterity. Edward Fitzgerald’s service to the memory of the glorious Astronomer-Poet is akin to Howard Carter’s part in bringing the glories of King Tutankhamen’s tomb to the attention of the world. In the many versions of Fitzgerald, Omar Khayyam has come into his own.
Be that as it may Fitzgerald’s work…
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