For Mumtaz, with love

For every thousandth footstep

that crosses your threshold,

does she feel his devotion a little bit more?

For every awed gaze

cast upon your alabaster splendor,

is she reminded that she was his muse?

For every lover inspired

by the story of how you came to be,

does she think of how he chose her above the rest?

Or is it your enduring presence

across centuries – of war, of occupation,

of so much human suffering

And the strength and patience

of the hands that built you

– the true story behind your wonder?


The Poetics challenge at dVerse this week was to write about a historical artifact. I thought of the Taj Mahal, known as one of the Seven Wonders of the World. It is also known as one of the greatest monuments to love; Mughal Emperor Shah Jahan commissioned it as a memorial for his late wife, Mumtaz, who died delivering their 14th child. While their story gives it some very romantic origins, I am also awed by the fact that it took twenty-two years to be built, over two thousand workers across India and Persia, and has stood in all its marble glory for almost 400 years now – and millions of people still flock to it every year.

14 Comments

  1. Ain Starlingsson, forestbathing hermit says:

    Just stunning..it feels like you captured the awe it deserves, not just its timeless appeal but the story behind, and the effort to create…wonderful poetry

    Like

    1. Thank you so much Ain! ๐Ÿ™‚

      Like

  2. fireblossom32 says:

    That image of the Taj Mahal and the area in front of it which you’ve used here is one of the most striking that I’ve ever seen. I’d love to go to Agra and see it in person. As you’ve expressed in your poem, it is magnificent for the love story behind its creation, and also for the blood, sweat, and tears that went into the building of it. It is that most rare of things, in that it magnificent, yes, but it is more than just what meets the eye. It’s unfathomable, in the tuest sense of the word.

    Like

    1. Thank you so much for reading, and your thoughts! I hope you do get to see it in person one day ๐Ÿ™‚

      Liked by 1 person

  3. Ron Rowland says:

    An excellently told tale.

    Like

    1. Thank you so much Ron! ๐Ÿ™‚

      Like

  4. merrildsmith says:

    You written a beautiful tribute to a beautiful tribute. And you also capture the history and the love story behind it, as well as the challenges that went into building it.
    I agree with fireblossum that the photo here is strikingly beautiful.

    Like

  5. Ingrid says:

    It is truly magnificent, and a wonderful story which you tell so well!

    Like

    1. Thank you so much Ingrid! ๐Ÿ™‚

      Liked by 1 person

  6. msjadeli says:

    A noble tribute to a wondrous and iconic structure. I like the way sunrises and sunsets color it.

    Like

    1. Thank you so much! ๐Ÿ™‚

      Liked by 1 person

      1. msjadeli says:

        You’re very welcome.

        Like

  7. We both wrote on the Taj Mahal! Love this.

    Like

    1. Thank you so much! ๐Ÿ™‚

      Like

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