Thursday, May 11, 2017




A Witness to times gone by and Something that was always around. A tree that gave soft and shining silk to us. A silent Darvesh in the Dargaah compound. .A feeling of some omnipresent spiritual entity. In winters, an all observing naked Faquir.

Is it Kalpavriksha? A Kalpatru that gives itself completely for the service of the mankind .

A tree that offers its branches for the yagneopavit ( Sacred Thread Ceremony in A Kashmiri Pandit Family ) ceremony. Its tender branches are also used for decorating the Coffin box used for carrying the dead to the crematorium. A trusted companion in our last journey. Silkworms feed on its green leaves. It offers its trunk for furniture and at times as General timber. sometimes, its thick branches are used to hold tools and implements made of iron.

O those Votive Threads( wishing strings) around it's slender trunk or branches.

Tu'l , It's fruit , so sweet , juicy and full of medicinal properties. Tu'l, Sometimes red, sometimes Pink, sometimes black and a few times snow-white. And the yummy yummy Jam made from this fruit.

But then suddenly, we turned ungrateful and unkind to it. Did we forget the Too't or Shahtoo't of our childhood days ?

I add lines from a poem of noted Kashmiri poetess Naseem Shafai translated to English by Prof. Neerja Mattoo....

When you walk in the shade of that old Mulberry ,
Go and tie a wishing string round it,
It stands as witness to times gone by,
The only memento our forefathers left.

It was in it's shade that granny spun
And sang Gazals of love so sweet.
It was here she mixed curd and rice,
And fed us, narrating ancient tales.

Through the sieve of it's branches and leaves,
Tempered and cooled, sunshine came down.
How many a tangled web of fate
Was sorted out in it's very shade !

How many a season, How much time,
It Saw and bore through all these years !
One Branch dying, Another born,
But still the lamps are lit at it's feet.

(Autar Mota)

Creative Commons LicenseCHINAR SHADE by Autarmota is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-No Derivative Works 2.5 India License.
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