از آمدنم نبود گردون را سود
وز رفتن من جاه و جلالش نفزود
وز هیچ کسی نیز دو گوشم نشنود
کاین آمدن و رفتنم از بهر چه بود
Dashti, quatrain 20, p.247
az aamadanam nabud gardun raa sud
vaz raftan-e man jaah o jalaalash nafzud
vaz hich kasi niz do gusham nashnud
kin aamadan o raftanam az bahre che bud
My coming brought no profit to the sky,
Nor does my going swell its majesty;
Coming and going put me to a stand,*
Ear never heard their wherefore or their why.
Whinfield, quatrain 176
What gain did Heaven get from making me?
What kudos did it earn from my demise?
Yet I have never heard from anyone
Why I was brought here, and why taken away.
Elwell-Sutton, In Search of Omar Khayyam, quatrain 20, p. 190
* put me to a stand = caused me to be perplexed, unable to sort things out
Translation & Discussion of the quatrain: 1.There was no profit to the sky/celestial sphere/the universe from my coming 2. and from my going its (the sky's) importance/honor and majesty were not increased - the verb is (na) + fozudan (=afzudan). 3. From no one also did my two ears hear -- the verb is shonudan, an older form of shanidan 4. "This coming and going of mine for what reason was it?" The function of ke (+in), that is, کاین, is to introduce a question indirectly, the question posed by "hear (what?)" in the preceding line.
Several quatrains, beginning with the first quatrain in this weblog, raise the perplexity throughout the quatrains attributed to Khayyaam, this frequent theme of "why". These are questions we ask, but they should not be a sticking point. Serious as they may be, Khayyaam apparently did not mean for them to be a place either for depression or for easy answers (on this, see Aminrazavi, 122-126). There is a choice for most of us, a choice to live a life that has meaning for us. Remember these words:
حالی خوش باش و عمر بر باد مکن
haali khosh baash o ‘omr bar baad makon
"be happy just now -- do not throw your life away (toss it to the winds)"