Today's Beautiful Gem: `Things of Love' by
Zeb-un-Nissa Makhfi (1638-1702),
translated by Willis Barnstone.
"Though I am Laila of Persian romance,
my heart loves like ferocious Majnun.
I want to go to the desert
but modesty is chains on my feet.
A nightingale came to the flower garden
because she was my pupil.
I am an expert in things of love.
Even the moth is my disciple!"
Note: If one has two close relatives as poets in the immediate family,
one would consider himself very fortunate and even blessed. But,
not so in the case of Emperor Aurangazeb! He branded his brother
Dara Shikoh as a heretic and got him executed. He did not approve
of his daughter Zeb-un-Nissa's love towards a court noble and got
him too executed. As for Zeb-un-Nissa, he didn't kill her, but he
imprisoned her. She was a talented poet among the women of her
time and wrote lyrical songs and ghazals.
om s'aantih: Peace! - J. K. Mohana Rao