Saturday, October 10, 2009


We had rains tonight . I could feel the anger of Indra, the rain god when we had been in the Dal lake yesterday. Winds , Dark clouds , and mild drizzle received us in the lake too. I felt cold .My friends from the bank who had accompanied me for a survey advised me not to venture in the lake in this weather . I said no. I knew the lake since my childhood days . Raj kumar sharma my friend and colleague in the Bank joined us from Dal Gate . Due to frequent traffic jams at Sonawar and Durga Nag temple Road , we took a different route from Sonawar . We went via Radio Kashmir and Tourist Reception Centre . The majestic Chinars opposite Burn Hall school have started bidding goodbye to summer . Dry Leaves are dropping here and there . The gardeners broom them to safe corners and burn them to make Kangri charcoal for the fast approaching winter .
My footpath friend ( who has been introduced by me in one of the posts and who treats me as some one connected with Bollywood ) and his father have thrown their apple Reddis aside and are now selling Chestnuts baked on timber Charcoal . we call them Punjabi Ghour in Kashmiri .

Truck loads of Kangris are pouring in to the city Markets from Anantnag and Chrar . Rice Harvesting is almost over except in some areas of Anantnag . The staff in the civil secretariat is readying itself for the Annual Darbar Move to Jammu .NADRU GEJJI ( Bundles of lotus stem ) have started decorating the vegetable shops over here . Very soon we shall have the Kaachha Haak .With Geysers on , we bathe with warm water . Sun god has mellowed . We use quilts during nights . Pullovers are needed during mornings and evenings . It is a Marriage season over here and every family is busy either in arranging the lunch for guests or joining these functions as guests . I had too many invitations but had no time to attend them . Landscape is fast changing all over in Kashmir . Very soon We shall be witnessing the Saffron flowers blooming in Karewas of Pampore ,Khrew and Lodhuv . Soon the tall and lofty chinars shall be spreading golden colour all over .The Jhelum Bund walk way is full of dry chinar leaves. I saw an early variety of Treil ( Small juicy Autumnal apple ) in a fruit shop . Pickle sellers have come with their stocks in hand driven carts yelling “ANCHAAR ” “ANCHAAR “ . I saw Tumbak Naari ( a local Instrument used in family musical get together and Mehndiraat singing ) in Large numbers in Pottery shops at Surra Teng Rainawari . Kashmiris need them for about 35000 marriages being solemnized this autumn ( as per reports in Greater Kashmir, a leading English news paper published from Srinagar ) .All signs point to the arrival of Harud ( Autumn ). So, Enter Autumn Please. Enter with your grace and colours in Kashmir .
Faiz wrote a beautiful poem on autumn when he was touched by persistent war and violence in the world. The poem conveys a metaphoric personification of a change .“Give some tree the gift of green again./Let one bird sing,” (last two lines ) show how desperate Faiz is for the war to end. The people who are suffering so much that they would appreciate even some little things changing and giving them hope. They aren’t demanding everything to change, but pleading for even something very very small to go back to normal. The poem applies to sufferings of human beings in all parts of the world . Enjoy the poem in wonderful translation by NOAMI LAZARD:-
When Autumn Came
This is the way that autumn came to the trees:
it stripped them down to the skin,l
left their ebony bodies naked.
It shook out their hearts,
the yellow leaves,
scattered them over the ground.
Anyone could trample them out of shape
undisturbed by a single moan of protest.
The birds that herald dreams,
were exiled from their song,
each voice torn out of its throat.
They dropped into the dust
even before the hunter strung his bow.
Oh, God of May have mercy.
Bless these withered bodies
with the passion of your resurrection;
make their dead veins flow with blood again.
Give some tree the gift of green again.
Let one bird sing.

(Avtar Mota)


  1. Dear Mr. Autar Mota JI,
    Wonderful glimpse of Kashmir Autumn


  2. Mota sahib,
    About 30 years back I was posted at Sonwar, those days come autumn one had to literaly walk our a laid flooring of red chinar leaves. Chinar trees were on both side of the road from Badamibagh to Dalgate . That is gone now. You finf chinar trees at Amar Singh Club grounds only in this area. Still your photographs have made us peep again in our past. Pl keep it up.


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