Occupy Poetry

Akbar, the Great 1542 - 1605

BY T. Wignesan

Akbar, the Great 1542 - 1605

Can a man – all alone - foist a god upon his fellows
Even if it’s only himself
And they his subjects
G.. is Akbar!
Does the muezzin from the minaret of Qoutoub-Minar
look up or
down to the illiterate savant emperor
whose newly-ordered cosmos
much as Tamerlane and Genghis Khan's blood
mixed gods
invented the Gysin-Burroughs cut-up and fold-in method
a cornucopian chimera
shi'ite-sunnite-kharidjites
hindu/buddhist-jain
confucian-taoist/zoroastrian
orthodox-christian/judaic
saivite-vaisnavite
mahayanist-theravadite
shintoist-zen-chan
agnostic-atheist
A…. is Great!
In the begining there was no VERB for him

In the end
from
"brahmana" Himalayas to the "asurya" Deccan
from
Ghazna and Kabul to the spent chugged mouth of the
Ganges
where bloomed the Allah-Upanishad
One common language
One uncommon religion
One classless society
One mutually nourishing art
One scientific quest
and the sweet music of friendly disputation
within then the world’s vastest book and art collection
though knowingly
took to wife an Hindu princess
chose his prime counsellor from among the Brahmin élite
where within hearing distance lithesome nymphs bathed
in scented milk
his victoriously wearied warrior limbs back from punitive
expeditions
through Panipat Delhi Agra Punjab Gwalior Ajmer
Gujarat Bengal Sind Orissa Baluchistan Ahmadnagar
Kashmir
Khandesh
to circumscribe the sub-continent
a Ceasar at the court of Fatehpur-Sikri

Akbar is ___!
Who would parse and complete or conclude the syllogism
For « One » who dared abolish the jiziyah

Note: Jalal ud-Din Muhammad Akbar (1542-1605), the third Mughal
Emperor, edicted that muezzins should herald the rising of the sun by
the call: Allah-u-Akbar!
The « jiziyah » , a word of Arabic origin, meaning a tax levied on non-
Muslims who wished to conserve their own property, and imposed by
the Moghul sovereigns – on and off - in India, was abolished by Akbar
in his seventh year of accession to the throne.
©: T. Wignesan, March 13, 1992 (from the sequence/collection:
"Words for a Lost Sub-Continent")

From: 
T. Wignesan

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