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I ask not to break the silence, but only that you shall stand,
Dear friend, ask not what burneth in my breast, i.
But, after all, the issue of that which man desireth of mundane goods and wherefor he lusteth is unknown to him and consequently it behoveth a mortal to ask not of his Lord a thing whose end he wotteth not; for that haply the hurt of that thing is nearer to him than its gain and his destruction may be in that he seeketh and there may befal him what befel the Serpent charmer, his wife and children and the folk of his house. —
When he heard my words, he repeated these verses: — Dear friend, ask not what burneth in my breast,