“There is no wisdom without power.
Were they to try to pawn me and my wisdom,
Together with my books and my inkstand,
For one day’s worth of food, it would not work
And such a bargain would be thought contemptible.
The poor, their state, their life,
How dark they are with troubles!
In summer they cannot find food, and in the cold
They have to warm themselves over a brazier.
Street dogs attack them and they are the butt
Of every despicable man.
When one of them complains about his lot,
There is none to excuse him among all mankind.
Such is the life of the poor man;
It will be best for him when he is in his grave.”
– The Arabian Nights (trans. Lyons, et al.)