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Gur Panth Parkash

Gur Panth Parkash
by Rattan Singh Bhangoo
Translated by
Prof Kulwant Singh

 

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The Coronation


Dr Parvinder Mehta

The image of the Sikh in the mirror,
so appealing, so handsome,
a young prince receiving coronation,
getting ready to face the world.
His freshly-bathed beard,
with curls like wavy clouds
caressed with admiration and care.
His long hair embracing him,
a royal cape of responsibility.

                Bowing in admirable and loving service
                he gathers these cascades of
                black wisps from back to front,
                combing out the tangles
                through caution, care and affection.
                Like life, the Sikh man loves his hair,
                with obedience and pride,
                following this daily ritual
                of remembrance and affirmation.

The soft, shining hair, go with the flow
of his tender, guiding hands.
The strands surrender their movements
kneaded together in unison.
His long beard twirled in grasps
of firmness and glued conviction.
His hair - like faithful subjects
follow the king's wishes,
no rebellion, no insurgence,
a simple complacency
of honor and respect.

                The curls and twists and turns
                give up to his hand's beckoning.
                The tugs strengthen his commitment,
                rolling into a confident knot of circular solidarity,
                reminding him of his promise to cherish God's gift.
                The tied band on the forehead
                prepares him for this coronation.

Five meters of muslin meanwhile, caressed and stretched
between him and his wife affirming their unbreakable
bond, an unwavering commitment.
Twirling the folds inside, unwrinkling the wraps
with patted caresses, he glances at his wife
as she twirls the folds on the other side.
She smiles back like a blushing bride
concealing emotions in wrapped layers.

                The quick pulls and tugs and folds
                bring them closer as they meet
                with layers and folds of the crowning,
                waiting eagerly to be placed on the proud head.

The mirror shows him ready for the moment,
he smiles at his beautiful empress.
He reminds her of their wedding
day when she saw her glorious groom
eyeing secretly his new bride.

                The first fold embracing his neck,
                a corner clenched tightly,
                like a child learning to hold with his teeth,
                moving up from the back to the forehead
                and then sloping down back.
                His crown emerges amidst
                this affectionate perusing,
                these multiple folds
                of dedication and tradition
                inheritance and reverence,
                commitment and allegiance,
                a disciple's acknowledgment
                of his Guru’s edification.

Remembering his Guru’s baptismal call,
he imagines that spring morning
when followers accepted the regal form
to bear and acknowledge the ambrosial
nectar of commitment and promises.
No fear in their hearts,
only a passion for obedience,
valiant soldiers, bold in thought
and actions, they learned to embrace
equality, drinking sips of pious
sweetness immersed with the Guru's love.

                The Sikh man's smile reveals
                the same pride of ancestral promises
                as he sifts through his mirror-image
                getting ready to face the world
                that knows not yet of his cherished inheritance.
                The proud wife wonders if
                the world will ever know about
                the hidden tunnels and histories
                of arduous persecutions.
                Will they ever unearth these
                grandiose, invisible rubies of faith and
                jewels of optimism adorning his crown?

Bidding wishes and love
to her handsome prince,
she hopes they will understand
perhaps someday… if not today
surely someday.

 

¤


ęCopyright Institute of Sikh Studies, 2012, All rights reserved.