Sunday, November 28, 2010

Concealed in words

An Iranian Prince once composed a verse of poetry...

"A black and white pearl is rare indeed"

He tried his best to add a second verse to this, but failed. He requested a number of other poets to help, but none of them succeeded. In desperation, he wrote to the King of Delhi, requesting for a second verse to be sent to him. The poets of Delhi were also unsuccessful. Zaibunisa Makhfi, the daughter of Alamgir Aurangzeb, was one day applying antimony and a teardrop fell from her eyes. Immediately, she composed the second verse:

"A black and white pearl is rare indeed,
Except in the surma mingled teardrop that falls from the eyes of the beloved"

The king sent the verses to the Iranian prince. After reading them, he requested that the poet be sent to him. Zaibunnisa wrote back with her answer in poetic verses:

"As the fragrance is concealed in the petals, I am concealed in my words.
Whoever desires to see me should read my verses"

~ A righteous and intellegent woman realises that her beauty is not to be subjected to the lustful glances of all and sundry. ~

-Khawatine Islam ke Iman Waqi'at, p230
as quoted in "Pearls from the Path", compiled by Moulana Afzal Ismail, Vol 2

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