THURSDAY Revisited – Poetry by Dr Ali commentary


THURSDAY Revisited

Commentary from Tahsin Chowdhury

Sunday I attended a Pakistani community event hosting Tahir Ul Qadri. I went because my father insisted on me attending, and because we thought Tahir Ul Qadri would discuss Sufism, as he usually does. Long story short, there was a mis-communication, and it was actually a politically driven event. We sat and heard the different voices of the Pakistani diaspora in the United States.

One man: Dr. Majid Ali spoke. He wrote a book of poetry called Drone Democracy (can’t find URL) and recited an excerpt from that book called Thursday. To be honest, the entire event I was a little bored. It mostly consisted of my father and I using the little Urdu we knew to translate to our Bengali selves what the speakers were saying. This poem, recited in its English form, caught my attention.

Love is to celebrate,

A crystal without creed,

A dew drop without color,

A raven without race.

A flower without faith,

A river without religion.

 

Love is to be,

A Muslim on Fridays,

A Jew on Saturdays,

A Christian on Sundays,

A Hindu on Mondays,

A Buddhist on Tuesdays.

An agnostic on Wednesdays,

A nobody on Thursdays.

 

What day,

Makes my day?

Might it be a Thursday?

A day to be a nobody.

 

Thursday,

A day for,

The language of silence,

The commerce of compassion.

A day to live,

A day to love,

A day to be true,

Giddy on life,

A day to be a nobody.

 

Thursday,

A day for,

For trancing in every shrine,

Far, far,

From the mind of the malign,

Softly, sublimating,

Into the heart of the Divine.

A day for love,

A love,

That only soul can refine.

On the way to be a nobody.

(Here is a recitation of it.)

 

It caught my attention. And I instantly felt the need to find the written text and read it over.

It signifies that true love for both the internal and the external comes when we “humble down” our egos. It started off by identifying different aspects of nature, which flow together regardless, and do not distinguish themselves.

As we’ve read, the author then identified the diverse human identities in the world associated with different portions of time. I see not just a writer embracing the diversity of weekdays, but let’s push more: I see a writer embracing the diversity of time, and how different times play a significant role to different people.

I know what some of you may be asking: Wednesday doesn’t mean anything to Agnostics. But I feel this poem goes deeper than fact-checking, and was highlighting diversity of peoples.

I love how the author set a separate portion for Thursday as the day to be nobody. He wrote:

A day to live,

A day to love,

A day to be true,

Giddy on life,

A day to be a nobody.

I think the poem ultimately sums up its purpose in the end. What I interpret is: if we “humble down” the ego of our identity; let it be religion, economic status, race etc; only then would we find “true love.” I believe he was pointing out that “love” fails to be achieved when we turn into a “somebody” from a nobody, when we categorize, and divide ourselves.

As you can tell: I loved the recitation.

There is one great thing to be learned from it: that we should leave the pride of our “identities” at the door when meeting others, in order to connect on a human level. This reminded me of one of my previous posts where I tried to point out we should identify others as human first before their specific race, ethnicity etc.

 

A day for love,

A love,

That only soul can refine.

On the way to be a nobody.

By Tahsin Chowdhury

 

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