When the Cynical CEO Saw the Treasures Of Lahore

By Novid Shaid, 2011

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For Data Saheb, Ali Al Hujwiri, Qaddus Allahu sirruhu

***

As he strode by blessed Bhatti gate,

The CEO’s pulse quickened with contractions of hate,

for what he deemed a place of superstition and ignorance.

But his mother told him to pass by Daata’s gate,

Weekly visits she instructed, to his growing distaste.

No longer just his mother’s son, but a man of wealth and weight.

Earning millions, with a flourishing global trade.

Founder of his brand, with growing conglomerates.

Still his old mother insisted he pass by Daata’s gate,

As he neared, he heard his mother’s words reverberate

Entreating her son, so loving and affectionate

With these lines she had sung since he was a weeping babe:

.

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The Lights of the Sun, the Moon and the Hearts

By Novid Shaid, 2011

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(based on a poem attributed to Rabia Al Adawiyya, “Ya Habeeb al qulub”)

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O You, who created the dazzling light of the sun,

which fills the sky at dawn with a mesmerising crimson complexion,

and grows in height and strength until it scales its zenith

beaming down from way on high, illuminating and majestic.

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Red Light

By Novid Shaid, 2011

Wa kulla shayin hammana yahuna bismika Ya Azeem

Red light, in a traffic jam. A swirling, rich, lollipopish red. Good enough to bite a chunk out of, not red like blood, but sweet red. The red light shone in front of him, in a tiny revolving ball, which seemed to be growing at a gradual pace. First the size of a pea, now grown to a draught piece, spinning and circling before him, as he sat, twiddling his thumbs under the steering wheel, in this sweltering day, with no end to the relentless congestion and blistering heat.

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