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ash-Shu`ara` (The Poets)
as rendered by N J Dawood 2014
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N J Dawood (2014) rendition of Surah The Poets(ash-Shu`ara`)
26:1 Tā‘ sīn mīm.
26:2 These are the revelations of the veritable Book:
26:3 you will perhaps fret yourself to death on account of their unbelief.
26:4 If We will, We can reveal to them a sign from heaven before which they will bow their necks in utter humility.
26:5 They turn their backs on each fresh Admonition they received from the Merciful:
26:6 they disbelieved, but the truth of that which they have laughed to scorn will dawn upon them.
26:7 Do they not see the earth, how We have planted on it all kinds of beneficial plants?
26:8 Surely in this there is a sign; yet most of them do not believe.
26:9 And surely your Lord is the Mighty One, the Compassionate.
26:10 Your Lord called out to Moses, saying: ‘Go to those wicked people;
26:11 the people of Pharaoh. Will they not take heed?‘
26:12 Lord,‘ he said, ‘I fear they will deny me.
26:13 I may become impatient and stammer in my speech. Send for Aaron.
26:14 They accuse me of a crime,¹ and I fear that they may put me to death.‘
26:15 Never fear,‘ said He. ‘Go both of you with Our signs; We shall be with you and shall hear all.
26:16 Go to Pharaoh and say to him: "We are messengers from the Lord of the Universe.
26:17 Let the Israelites depart with us."‘
26:18 Pharaoh said: ‘Did we not bring you up when you were an infant? And did you not stay in our midst several years of your life?
26:19 Yet you have done the deed you did; surely you are ungrateful.‘
26:20 He said: ‘I did that when I had gone astray.
26:21 I fled from you because I feared you. But my Lord has given me wisdom and made me an apostle.
26:22 And this is the favour with which you taunt me: you have made the Israelites your bondsmen.‘
26:23 Who is the Lord of the Universe?‘ said Pharaoh.
26:24 He said: ‘The Lord of the heavens and the earth and all that lies between them. If only you believed!‘
26:25 Do you hear?‘ said he to those around him.
26:26 Your Lord,‘ he went on, ‘and the Lord of your forefathers.‘
26:27 He said: ‘The apostle who has been sent to you is surely possessed!‘
26:28 The Lord of the East and of the West,‘ said Moses, ‘and all that lies between them. If only you could understand!‘
26:29 If you serve any other god but myself,‘ he said, ‘I shall have you thrown into prison.‘
26:30 Even if I showed you a convincing sign?‘ he said.
26:31 He replied: ‘Show it to us, if what you say be true.‘
26:32 He threw down his staff and thereupon it changed to a veritable serpent.
26:33 Then he drew out his hand, and it was white to all who saw it.
26:34 This man,‘ he said to the nobles around him, ‘is a skilful sorcerer
26:35 who seeks to drive you from your land by his sorcery. What is your counsel?‘
26:36 They said: ‘Put them off awhile, him and his brother, and send forth criers to the cities to bring
26:37 every skilled enchanter to your presence.‘
26:38 The sorcerers were gathered on an appointed day,
26:39 and the people were asked: ‘Are you all assembled?
26:40 We may follow the sorcerers if they win the day.‘
26:41 And when the sorcerers came they said to Pharaoh: ‘Shall we be rewarded if we win?‘
26:42 ‘Yes,‘ he answered, ‘and you shall become my favoured friends.‘
26:43 Moses said to them: ‘Throw down all that you wish to throw.‘
26:44 They threw down their ropes and staffs, saying: ‘By Pharaoh‘s glory, we shall surely win!‘
26:45 Then Moses threw down his staff, and it swallowed up their false devices.
26:46 The sorcerers prostrated themselves,
26:47 saying: ‘We now believe in the Lord of the Universe,
26:48 the Lord of Moses and Aaron.‘
26:49 He said: ‘Do you dare believe in him before I give you leave? He must surely be your master, who has taught you witchcraft. But you shall see. I will cut off your hands and feet on alternate sides and crucify you all.‘
26:50 That cannot harm us,‘ they replied, ‘for to our Lord we shall return.
26:51 We hope our Lord will forgive us our sins, since we are the first who have believed.‘
26:52 Then We revealed Our will to Moses, saying: ‘Set forth with My servants in the night, for you will be pursued.‘
26:53 Pharaoh sent forth criers to the cities.
26:54 These,‘ they said, ‘are but a puny band,
26:55 who have provoked us much.
26:56 But we are a numerous army, well-prepared.‘
26:57 Thus did We make them leave their gardens and their fountains,
26:58 their treasures and their sumptuous dwellings.
26:59 Even thus; and to the Israelites We gave those.
26:60 At sunrise the Egyptians followed them.
26:61 And when the two multitudes came within sight of each other, Moses‘ companions said: ‘We are surely undone!‘
26:62 No,‘ he said, ‘my Lord is with me, and He will guide me.‘
26:63 We bade Moses strike the sea with his staff, and the sea was cleft asunder, each part as high as a massive mountain.
26:64 In between We made the others follow.
26:65 We delivered Moses and all who were with him,
26:66 and the others We drowned.
26:67 Surely in that there was a sign; yet most of them did not believe.
26:68 Surely, your Lord is the Mighty One, the Compassionate.
26:69 Recount to them the story of Abraham.
26:70 He said to his father and to his people: ‘What is that which you worship?‘
26:71 They said: ‘We worship idols and pray to them with all fervour.‘
26:72 Do they hear you when you pray?‘ he asked.
26:73 ‘Can they help you or do you harm?‘
26:74 They said: ‘This was what our fathers did before us.‘
26:75 He said: ‘Do you see those you have worshipped,
26:76 you and your forefathers of old?
26:77 They are my enemies. Not so the Lord of the Universe,
26:78 who has created me; who gives me guidance,
26:79 food and drink;
26:80 who, when I am sick, restores me;
26:81 who will cause me to die and bring me back to life hereafter;
26:82 who, I hope, will forgive me my sins on the Day of Judgement.
26:83 Lord, bestow wisdom upon me, and admit me among the righteous.
26:84 Endow me with a tongue of truthfulness among posterity
26:85 and count me among the heirs of the Blissful Garden.
26:86 Forgive my father, for he has gone astray.
26:87 Do not hold me up to shame on the Day of Resurrection;
26:88 the day when wealth and offspring will be of no avail,
26:89 and when none shall be saved but him who comes before his Lord with a pure heart;
26:90 when Paradise shall be brought within sight of the righteous
26:91 and Hell be revealed to the erring.
26:92 They will be asked: "Where are the idols which you worshipped besides God?
26:93 Can they help you or help themselves?"
26:94 And into Hell they shall be hurled, they and those who misled them,
26:95 and Satan‘s legions all.
26:96 "By the Lord," they will say, as they contend with them,
26:97 "we clearly erred
26:98 when we made you equals with the Lord of the Universe.
26:99 It was but the transgressors who led us astray.
26:100 We have no intercessors now,
26:101 no loving friend.
26:102 Could we but live our lives again we would be true believers."‘
26:103 Surely in that there was a sign, yet most of them did not believe.
26:104 Surely your Lord is the Mighty One, the Compassionate.
26:105 The people of Noah disbelieved the emissaries.
26:106 Will you not fear God?‘ said Noah, their kin, to them.
26:107 I am indeed your truthful apostle.
26:108 Fear God, then, and follow me.
26:109 For this I demand of you no recompense, for none can reward me except the Lord of the Universe.
26:110 Fear God, and follow me.‘
26:111 They said: ‘Are we to believe in you when your followers are but the lowest of the low?‘
26:112 I have no knowledge of what they did,‘ he said.
26:113 ‘My Lord alone can bring them to account. Would that you understood!
26:114 Nor will I drive away the true believers.
26:115 I am sent forth only to give plain warning.‘
26:116 Noah,‘ they said, ‘desist, or you shall be stoned to death.‘
26:117 He said: ‘Lord, my people disbelieve me.
26:118 Judge rightly between us. Save me and the believers who are with me.‘
26:119 So We delivered him and those who were with him in the laden ark,
26:120 and drowned the others thereafter.
26:121 Surely in that there was a sign; yet most of them did not believe.
26:122 Surely your Lord is the Mighty One, the Compassionate.
26:123 Ad disbelieved the apostles.
26:124 Their kin Hūd had said to them: ‘Will you not fear God?
26:125 I am indeed your truthful apostle.
26:126 Fear God, then, and follow me.
26:127 For this I demand of you no recompense; none can reward me except the Lord of the Universe. ‘
26:128 Will you erect a monument on every hill?
26:129 Vain is your work. You build strong fortresses, hoping that you may last for ever.
26:130 When you exercise your power, you act like cruel tyrants.
26:131 Fear God, and follow me.
26:132 Fear Him who has given you all the things you know.
26:133 He has given you flocks and children,
26:134 gardens and fountains.
26:135 Beware the torment of a fateful day.‘
26:136 They said: ‘We care nothing whether or not you preach to us.
26:137 This is but a myth of the ancients.
26:138 Surely we shall not be punished.‘
26:139 They denied him, and thus We utterly destroyed them. Surely in that there was a sign; yet most of them did not believe.
26:140 Surely your Lord is the Mighty One, the Compassionate.
26:141 Thamūd disbelieved the apostles.
26:142 Their kin Ṣālih had said to them: ‘Will you not fear God?
26:143 I am indeed your truthful apostle.
26:144 Fear God and follow me.
26:145 For this I demand of you no recompense; none can reward me except the Lord of the Universe.
26:146 Are you to be left secure in this land,
26:147 amid gardens and fountains,
26:148 cornfields and palm-trees laden with fine fruit,
26:149 hewing your dwellings out of the mountains and leading a wanton life?
26:150 Have fear of God and follow me.
26:151 Do not obey the bidding of transgressors
26:152 who perpetrate corruption in the land and do no good at all.‘
26:153 They said: ‘Surely you are bewitched.
26:154 You are but a mortal like ourselves. Show us a sign, if what you say be true.‘
26:155 ‘Here,‘ he said, ‘is this she-camel. She shall have her share of water as you have yours, each drinking on an appointed day.
26:156 Do not harm her, or the scourge of a fateful day shall take you.‘
26:157 Yet they hamstrung her, and in the morning were repentant.
26:158 The scourge took them. Surely in that there was a sign. Yet most of them did not believe.
26:159 Surely your Lord is the Mighty One, the Compassionate.
26:160 Lot‘s people disbelieved the apostles.
26:161 Their kin Lot had said to them: ‘Will you not fear God?
26:162 I am indeed your truthful apostle.
26:163 Fear God and follow me.
26:164 For this I demand of you no recompense; none can reward me except the Lord of the Universe.
26:165 Will you fornicate with the males of humans
26:166 and eschew the wives whom God has created for you? Surely you are a sinful people.
26:167 Lot,‘ they said, ‘desist or you shall be banished.‘
26:168 He said: ‘I abhor your ways.
26:169 Lord, deliver me and my kin from their practices.‘
26:170 We delivered him and his kindred all,
26:171 save for one old woman who stayed behind,
26:172 and the others We utterly destroyed.
26:173 We pelted them with rain, and evil was the rain which fell on those who were forewarned.
26:174 Surely in that there was a sign. Yet most of them did not believe.
26:175 Your Lord is the Mighty One, the Compassionate.
26:176 The dwellers of the Forest¹ disbelieved the apostles.
26:177 Shu‘aib had said to them: ‘Will you not fear God?
26:178 I am indeed your truthful apostle.
26:179 Fear God and follow me.
26:180 For this I demand of you no recompense: none can reward me except the Lord of the Universe.
26:181 Give just measure and defraud none.
26:182 Weigh with even scales
26:183 and do not cheat the people of what is rightly theirs; nor shall you corrupt the land with evil.
26:184 And fear Him who created you and the earlier generation.‘
26:185 They said: ‘You are surely bewitched.
26:186 You are but a mortal like ourselves. Indeed, we believe that you are lying.
26:187 Bring down upon us a fragment of the sky if what you say be true.‘
26:188 He said: ‘My Lord has better knowledge of what you do.‘
26:189 They disbelieved him, and thus the scourge of the Day of Darkness smote them; it was surely the scourge of a fateful day.
26:190 Surely in that there was a sign; yet most of them did not believe.
26:191 Your Lord is the Mighty One, the Compassionate.
26:192 This is surely revealed by the Lord of the Universe.
26:193 The Faithful Spirit has brought it down
26:194 into your heart, that you may give warning
26:195 in eloquent Arabic speech.
26:196 It was surely foretold in the Scriptures of the ancients.
26:197 Is it not sufficient proof for them that the doctors of the Israelites recognize it?
26:198 If We had revealed it to a foreign man,
26:199 and he had recited it to them, they still would not have believed.
26:200 Thus do We put unbelief in the hearts of the guilty:
26:201 they shall not believe in it until they see the woeful scourge,
26:202 which shall suddenly smite them when they are heedless.
26:203 And then they will say: ‘Shall we ever be reprieved?‘
26:204 Is it their wish to hurry on Our scourge?
26:205 Think! If We let them live in ease for many years;
26:206 and then the promised scourge does fall upon them,
26:207 of what avail will their past enjoyments be to them?
26:208 Never have We destroyed a city We did not warn
26:209 and admonish beforehand. We are never unjust.
26:210 It was not the demons who brought this down:
26:211 it is neither in their interest nor in their power.
26:212 Indeed, they are too far away to overhear it.
26:213 Therefore call on no other god besides God, lest you suffer torment.
26:214 Admonish your nearest kin
26:215 and show kindness to those of the believers who follow you.
26:216 If they disobey you, say: ‘I am not accountable for what you do.‘
26:217 Put your trust in the Mighty One, the Compassionate,
26:218 who observes you when you stand upright
26:219 and when you walk among the worshippers.
26:220 He it is who hears all and knows all.
26:221 Shall I tell you on whom the demons descend?
26:222 They descend on every lying sinner.
26:223 They eagerly listen, but most of them are liars.
26:224 Poets are followed by erring men.
26:225 Behold how aimlessly they rove in every valley,
26:226 preaching what they never practise.
26:227 Not so the true believers, who do good works and remember God with fervour and defend themselves only when wronged. The wrongdoers will then learn to what end they will be overturned.


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