PRELUDE

Nadir, the Afghan monarch, meek in the spirit like a dervesh,
blessings of God on his noble soul;
affairs of the nation sound by his sagacity,
his sword protector of the luminous Faith;
like Abu Dhar melting himself in prayer,
his blow in fight shattering rocks.
The time of Siddiq1 was renewed by his grace.
the days of Farooq2 made afresh by his glory.
Bearer of anguish for the Faith like a tulip,
in the night of the East his person a lamp;
in his sight the ecstasy of inspired men,
the essence of his life charged with fervour.
Kingship, a sword, and darveshism, the inner sight,
both these are pearls from the sea of
La Ilah!3
Faqr 4 and kingship are twin incidences of the Prophet.
these are but effulgences of his charismatic self.
Both these powers spring from a believer’s self,
one is the Qayam 5 and the other prostration.
Faqr is all feling, pain, scalds and aspiration;
its glory lies in rolling in blood,
Felicitations without end to the Faqr of this martyr.
O breeze, O traveller with high speed; my winged Hermes,
blow softly in going round his grave;
the King is asleep, lay your feet softly,
open the knot of the bud even more gently.
I received a message from his glorious self,
which infused new life in me. It ran:6
“I was burnt sere O! by your fiery lay,
how happy the nation which knows your intent”.
Our nation knows well your heart-ache,
we know from where these notes arise.
O you like lightning in the lap of our clouds,
the East aglow and bright with your light,
Shine awhile on our mountains,
grant once again the same burning fever.
How long will you remain bound in chains?
You are a Moses, take to the path of Sinai.
I passed over gardens and villas, plains and terrains, barren and dry,
stopping Over hills and mountains like the breeze.
Khayhar is not unfamiliar with godly men;
Its breast is full of thousand stories.
I have seldom seen paths more intricate and criss cross,
the sight gets lost in their winding courses.
Seek not grass in its barren crags,
colour and scent arise not from its core.
It is a land whose partridges have the temper of a hawk;
in its clime white fierce falcons with sharp talons,
the leopard starts trembling by their fear.
But on account of lack of centrality, it is in a bad plight.
Lacking order, it is imperfect and half-backed.
No majesty of falcons in its people’s flight,
Which is less even than that of pheasants.
Alas! this nation without the glow of life!
Its time is devoid of happenings;
one is lying prostrate and the other standing up,
its condition is just like a prayer without an Imam.
Its flask shattered to pieces by its own stone;
Alas! this parlous state — a today without the morrow.