The Epic of Gilgamesh – Tablet X

The tavern-keeper Siduri who lives by the seashore,
she lives...
the pot-stand was made for her, the golden fermenting vat was made for her.
She is covered with a veil ...
Gilgamesh was roving about...
wearing a skin,...
having the flesh of the gods in his body,
but sadness deep within him,
looking like one who has been traveling a long distance.
The tavern-keeper was gazing off into the distance,
puzzling to herself, she said,
wondering to herself:
   "That fellow is surely a murderer(!)!
   Where is he heading! ..."
As soon as the tavern-keeper saw him, she bolted her door,
bolted her gate, bolted the lock.
But at her noise Gilgamesh pricked up his ears,
lifted his chin (to look about) and then laid his eyes on her.
Gilgamesh spoke to the tavern-keeper, saying:
   "Tavern-keeper, what have you seen that made you bolt
                                your door,
   bolt your gate, bolt the lock!
   if you do not let me in I will break your door, and smash
                                 the lock!
   ... the wilderness."
... Gilgamesh
The tavern-keeper Siduri who lives by the seashore,
she lives...
the pot-stand was made for her, the golden fermenting vat was made
                                   for her.
She is covered with a veil ...
Gilgamesh was roving about...
wearing a skin,...
having the flesh of the gods in his body,
but sadness deep within him,
looking like one who has been traveling a long distance.
The tavern-keeper was gazing off into the distance,
puzzling to herself, she said,
wondering to herself:
   "That fellow is surely a murderer(!)!
   Where is he heading! ..."
As soon as the tavern-keeper saw him, she bolted her door,
bolted her gate, bolted the lock.
But at her noise Gilgamesh pricked up his ears,
lifted his chin (to look about) and then laid his eyes on her.
Gilgamesh spoke to the tavern-keeper, saying:
   "Tavern-keeper, what have you seen that made you bolt
                                your door,
   bolt your gate, bolt the lock!
   if you do not let me in I will break your door, and smash
                                 the lock!
   ... the wilderness."
... Gilgamesh
... gate
Gilgamesh said to the tavern-keeper:
   "I am Gilgamesh, I killed the Guardian!
   I destroyed Humbaba who lived in the Cedar Forest,
   I slew lions in the mountain passes!
   I grappled with the Bull that came down from heaven, and
                                killed him."
The tavern-keeper spoke to Gilgamesh, saying:
   "lf you are Gilgamesh, who killed the Guardian,
   who destroyed Humbaba who lived in the Cedar Forest,
   who slew lions in the mountain passes,
   who grappled with the Bull that came down from heaven, and
                                killed him,
   why are your cheeks emaciated, your expression desolate!
   Why is your heart so wretched, your features so haggard!
   Why is there such sadness deep within you!
   Why do you look like one who has been traveling a long
                                  distance
   so that ice and heat have seared your face!
   ... you roam the wilderness!"
Gilgamesh spoke to her, to the tavern-keeper he said:
   "Tavern-keeper, should not my cheeks be emaciated?
   Should my heart not be wretched, my features not haggard?
   Should there not be sadness deep within me!
   Should I not look like one who has been traveling a long
                                 distance,
   and should ice and heat not have seared my face!
   ..., should I not roam the wilderness?
   My friend, the wild ass who chased the wild donkey, panther of
                             the wilderness,
   Enkidu, the wild ass who chased the wild donkey, panther of
                              the wilderness,
   we joined together, and went up into the mountain.
   We grappled with and killed the Bull of Heaven,
we destroyed Humbaba who lived in the Cedar Forest,
we slew lions in the mountain passes!
My friend, whom I love deeply, who went through every hard-
                           ship with me,
Enkidu, whom I love deeply, who went through every hardship
                              with me,
the fate of mankind has overtaken him.
Six days and seven nights I mourned over him
and would not allow him to be buried
until a maggot fell out of his nose.
I was terrified by his appearance(!),
I began to fear death, and so roam the wilderness.
The issue of my friend oppresses me,
so I have been roaming long trails through the wilderness.
The issue of Enkidu, my friend, oppresses me,
so I have been roaming long roads through the wilderness.
How can I stay silent, how can 1 be still!
My friend whom I love has turned to clay.
Am I not like him? Will I lie down, never to get up again?"'
Gilgamesh spoke to the tavern-keeper, saying:
   "So now, tavern-keeper, what is the way to Utanapishtim!
   What are its markers Give them to me! Give me the markers!
   If possible, I will cross the sea;
   if not, I will roam through the wilderness."
The tavern-keeper spoke to Gilgamesh, saying:
   "There has never been, Gilgamesh, any passage whatever,
   there has never been anyone since days of yore who crossed
                                   the sea.
   The (only) one who crosses the sea is valiant Shamash, except
                         for him who can cross!
   The crossing is difficult, its ways are treacherous--
   and in between are the Waters of Death that bar its approaches!
   And even if, Gilgamesh, you should cross the sea,
   when you reach the Waters of Death what would you do!
   Gilgamesh, over there is Urshanabi, the ferryman of Utanapishtim.
   'The stone things' L are with him, he is in the woods picking
                                   mint( !).
   Go on, let him see your face.
   If possible, cross with him;
   if not, you should turn back."
When Gilgamesh heard this
he raised the axe in his hand,
drew the dagger from his belt,
and slipped stealthily away after them.
Like an arrow he fell among them ("the stone things").
From the middle of the woods their noise could be heard.
Urshanabi, the sharp-eyed, saw...
  When he heard the axe, he ran toward it.
  He struck his head ... Gilgamesh.'
  He clapped his hands and ... his chest,
  while "the stone things" ... the boat
  ... Waters of Death
  ... broad sea
  in the Waters of Death ...
  ... to the river
  ... the boat
  ... on the shore.
  Gilgamesh spoke to Urshanabi (?), the ferryman,
      ... you."
Urshanabi spoke to Gilgamesh, saying:'
      "Why are your cheeks emaciated, your expression desolate!
      Why is your heart so wretched, your features so haggard?
      Why is there such sadness deep within you!
      Why do you look like one who has been traveling a long
                                     distance
      so that ice and heat have seared your face!
      Why ... you roam the wilderness!"
  Gilgamesh spoke to Urshanabi, saying:
      "Urshanabi, should not my cheeks be emaciated, my expression
                                    desolate!
      Should my heart not be wretched, my features not haggard
      Should there not be sadness deep within me?
      Should I not look like one who has been traveling a long
                                    distance,
and should ice and heat not have seared my face!
      ... should I not roam the wilderness?
      My friend who chased wild asses in the mountain, the panther
                               of the wilderness,
      Enkidu, my friend, who chased wild asses in the mountain, the
                         panther of the wilderness,
      we joined together, and went up into the mountain.
      We grappled with and killed the Bull of Heaven,
      we destroyed Humbaba who dwelled in the Cedar Forest,
      we slew lions in the mountain passes!
      My friend, whom I love deeply, who went through every hard-
                                 ship with me,
      Enkidu, my friend, whom I love deeply, who went through
                           every hardship with me,
      the fate of mankind has overtaken him.
    Six days and seven nights I mourned over him
      and would not allow him to be buried
      until a maggot fell out of his nose.
      I was terrified by his appearance(!),
      I began to fear death, and so roam the wilderness.
      The issue of my friend oppresses me,
      so I have been roaming long trails through the wilderness.
      The issue of Enkidu, my friend, oppresses me,
      so 1 have been roaming long roads through the wilderness.
      How can I stay silent, how can I be still!
      My friend whom I love has turned to clay;
      Enkidu, my friend whom I love, has turned to clay!
      Am I not like him! Will I lie down, never to get up again!"
     Gilgamesh spoke to Urshanabi, saying:
      "Now, Urshanabi! What is the way to Utanapishtim?
      What are its markers! Give them to me! Give me the markers!
      If possible, I will cross the sea;
      if not, I will roam through the wilderness!"
Urshanabi spoke to Gilgamesh, saying:
   "It is your hands, Gilgamesh, that prevent the crossing!
   You have smashed the stone things,' you have pulled out their
                           retaining ropes (?).
   'The stone things' have been smashed, their retaining ropes (!)
                             pulled out!
Gilgamesh, take the axe in your hand, go down into the woods,
and cut down 300 punting poles each 60 cubits in length.
Strip them, attach caps(?), and bring them to the boat!"
When Gilgamesh heard this
he took up the axe in his hand, drew the dagger from his belt,
and went down into the woods,
and cut 300 punting poles each 60 cubits in length.
He stripped them and attached caps(!), and brought them to
                                  the boat.
Gilgamesh and Urshanabi bearded the boat,
Gilgamesh launched the magillu-boat' and they sailed away.
By the third day they had traveled a stretch of a month and a
                                  half, and
Urshanabi arrived at the Waters of Death.
Urshanabi said to Gilgamesh:
   "Hold back, Gilgamesh, take a punting pole,
   but your hand must not pass over the Waters of Death ... !
   Take a second, Gilgamesh, a third, and a fourth pole,
   take a fifth, Gilgamesh, a sixth, and a seventh pole,
   take an eighth, Gilgamesh, a ninth, and a tenth pole,
   take an eleventh, Gilgamesh, and a twelfth pole!"
In twice 60 rods Gilgamesh had used up the punting poles.
Then he loosened his waist-cloth(?) for...
Gilgamesh stripped off his garment
and held it up on the mast(!) with his arms.
Utanapishtim was gazing off into the distance,
puzzling to himself he said, wondering to himself:
   "Why are 'the stone things' of the boat smashed to pieces!
   And why is someone not its master sailing on it?
   The one who is coming is not a man of mine, ...
   I keep looking but not...
   I keep looking but not ...
   I keep looking..."
 lines are missing here.]
Utanapishtim said to Gilgamesh:
   "Why are your cheeks emaciated, your expression desolate!
   Why is your heart so wretched, your features so haggard!
   Why is there such sadness deep within you!
   Why do you look like one who has been traveling a long distance
   so that ice and heat have seared your face!
   ... you roam the wilderness!"
Gilgamesh spoke to Utanapishtim saying:
   "Should not my cheeks be emaciated, my expression desolate!
   Should my heart not be wretched, my features not haggard!
   Should there not be sadness deep within me!
   Should I not look like one who has been traveling a long distance,
   and should ice and heat not have seared my face!
   ... should I not roam the wilderness)
   My friend who chased wild asses in the mountain, the panther
                            of the wilderness,
   Enkidu, my friend, who chased wild asses in the mountain, the
                      panther of the wilderness,
   we joined together, and went up into the mountain.
   We grappled with and killed the Bull of Heaven,
   we destroyed Humbaba who dwelled in the Cedar Forest,
   we slew lions in the mountain passes!
   My friend, whom I love deeply, who went through every hard-
                              shin with me
Enkidu, my friend, whom I love deeply, who went through
                        every hardship with me,
   the fate of mankind has overtaken him.
   Six days and seven nights I mourned over him
   and would not allow him to be buried
   until a maggot fell out of his nose.
   I was terrified by his appearance(!),
   I began to fear death, and so roam the wilderness.
   The issue of my friend oppresses me,
   so I have been roaming long trails through the wilderness.
   The issue of Enkidu, my friend, oppresses me,
   so I have been roaming long roads through the wilderness.
   How can I stay silent, how can I be still!
   My friend whom I love has turned to clay;
   Enkidu, my friend whom I love, has turned to clay!
   Am I not like him! Will I lie down never to get up again!"
Gilgamesh spoke to Utanapishtim, saying:
   "That is why (?) I must go on, to see Utanapishtim whom they
                           call 'The Faraway.'"
   I went circling through all the mountains,
   I traversed treacherous mountains, and crossed all the seas--
   that is why (!) sweet sleep has not mellowed my face,
   through sleepless striving I am strained,
   my muscles are filled with pain.
   I had not yet reached the tavern-keeper's area before my
                            clothing gave out.
   I killed bear, hyena, lion, panther, tiger, stag, red-stag, and
                        beasts of the wilderness;
   I ate their meat and wrapped their skins around me.'
The gate of grief must be bolted shut, sealed with pitch and
                                 bitumen !
   As for me, dancing...
   For me unfortunate(!) it(?) will root out..."
Utanapishtim spoke to Gilgamesh, saying: 
   "Why, Gilgamesh, do you ... sadness?
   You who were created (!) from the flesh of gods and mankind
   who made ... like your father and mother?
   Have you ever... Gilgamesh ... to the fool ...
   They placed a chair in the Assembly, ...
   But to the fool they gave beer dregs instead of butter,
   bran and cheap flour which like ...
   Clothed with a loincloth (!) like ...
   And ... in place of a sash,
   because he does not have ...
   does not have words of counsel ...
   Take care about it, Gilgamesh,
   ... their master...
   ... Sin...
   ... eclipse of the moon ...
   The gods are sleepless ...
   They are troubled, restless(!) ...
   Long ago it has been established...
   You trouble yourself...
   ... your help ...
   If Gilgamesh ... the temple of the gods
   ... the temple of the holy gods,
   ... the gods ...
   ... mankind,
   they took ... for his fate.
   You have toiled without cease, and what have you got!
Through toil you wear yourself out,
you fill your body with grief,
your long lifetime you are bringing near (to a premature end)!
Mankind, whose offshoot is snapped off like a reed in a
                             canebreak,
the fine youth and lovely girl
... death.
No one can see death,
no one can see the face of death,
no one can hear the voice of death,
yet there is savage death that snaps off mankind.
For how long do we build a household?
For how long do we seal a document!
For how long do brothers share the inheritance?
For how long is there to be jealousy in the land(!)!
For how long has the river risen and brought the overflowing
                               waters,
so that dragonflies drift down the river!'
The face that could gaze upon the face of the Sun
has never existed ever.
How alike are the sleeping(!) and the dead.
The image of Death cannot be depicted.
(Yes, you are a) human being, a man (?)!
After Enlil had pronounced the blessing,'"
the Anunnaki, the Great Gods, assembled.
Mammetum, she who forms destiny, determined destiny with them.
They established Death and Life,
but they did not make known 'the days of death'".

http://www.ancienttexts.org/library/mesopotamian/gilgamesh/tab10.htm

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