Posts Tagged ‘poetry’
Snow is on everyone’s minds these days. The Winter Olympics are in full swing and our North American customers seem to be covered in it (even those in the balmy state of Texas)! Snow is beautiful and magical – a stunning sight to behold.
Perhaps no other word better captures the exquisiteness of snow than the Sanskrit hima (pronounced with a short “i” as in “pit”). Merely speaking the word hima ushers in winter’s breathtaking serenity.
In the above graphic, you’ll see the word hima as written in 8 Indic languages (Bengali, Gujarati, Hindi/Devanagri, Kannada, Malayalam, Oriya, Punjabi and Telugu). If you speak one of these languages at home, see if you can get your kids to identify their native script!
Hima is, of course, also the first part of Himalaya (aalaya means “abode”) – the mountain range that crowns India and holds many secrets of her past. If you find yourself hibernating with the kids these days, stage a poetry reading with this stunning work: The Himalayas by Allama Iqbal (scroll past the Urdu for the English translation). Lyricism as only Iqbal can deliver…
I remember when my son saw Gandhi-ji’s picture for the first time several months ago – I had a large copy of the above picture (the portrait, not the cupcake) lying around at home for a future Gnaana product. When I noticed he was staring at the picture, I told him that it was Gandhi, and that he was “a very good man.” I guess Gandhi’s photograph was amusing to him because he smiled (his cute, shy smile) and repeated “Gandhi.” I guess if you think about it, Gandhi does look funny (especially when he’s enlarged) – with the bald head, ears sticking out, bushy mustache and the round spectacles – like a jovial grandfather ready to get silly with the kids.
Images are so powerful.
This Gandhi Jayanti, I propped up that picture on our cookbook stand and announced that it was Gandhi’s birthday. Later this evening, we’re celebrating with a quiet party at home – with cupcakes and candles (since, in the world according to toddlers, one simply cannot have a birthday without cake), and a simplified oral story (my son’s latest craze) about the man who defeated an empire by being calm and patient.
And here is a great poem, written from a kid’s perspective, from an unknown author:
A Poem On Gandhiji
It was vacation, and I had nothing to do;
Sometimes it takes a stranger to make you stop and appreciate the things in your life. I was out one day and randomly started talking to a fellow South Asian, a Mr. Kareem, who was about my father’s age. We started talking about children, and he was giving me some advice. “You know, Kahlil Gibran described the relationship between a parent and a child to a bow and its arrow,” he said. That analogy was so beautiful – I went home and looked up the exact language.
Here is the poem:
Your children are not your children.
You may give them your love but not your thoughts,
You are the bows from which your children
Thank you, Mr. Kareem, for pointing me to these wonderful, inspirational words. And I just ordered Gibran’s The Prophet from Amazon.