The foot I set and proceed,
I hear the footsteps of the man of deeds,
Good or bad, God knows what?
But cold or hot
He is there…
How or where, not a single soul is aware.
Paces he forth and back,
Sun shines bright and i see him with his sack,
Burdened on his shoulders… was he lost?
I wondered. Will I leave my beloved that way at any cost?
Fear takes me over,
I see his lips quiver,
Tears blurred his vision,
Was it in any way my sensitive delusion?
I barely stare into his eyes,
My secretive eardrums hear his yearning cries,
Again, I look at him
To realize that tears were on the brim,
Mine or his was hard to say.
Sighting him was a part of my duties everyday,
Why did he walk for so long when he could hardly move his feet?
Why did he walk when his eyesight couldn’t spot a figure complete?
All this I thought as I stared at his white garment,
Fortunately, at that instant my mind acted as a parchment,
Documenting what I wondered about,
But even now, one thing remains a doubt.
Was he lost any way, what shall I say?
For I know not who he is and has long gone far away…
The poem I have written above talks about a man who lives in my residing area. He is extremely old, quite a hunch back I would say. He walks forth and back, from dustbin to God knows where. He collects the waste and throws them into the public bin in my area. I never had the nerve in me to go and ask him what he was exactly up to. Just another type of ignorance shown by me, but I always had the desire to help him; but I just didn’t know where to start it all from. I do not know the story behind that noble man and I am nowhere close to judge his present or past. But everytime I see him, one thing does click onto my mind, not necessarily something about him though. I generally think about all those old people who are suffering similarly and those old parents who can be taken care of extremely well, but instead they are on the roads finding nowhere to go.
Sadly, these cruel things happen in the same world where we have learnt that paradise lies under the feet of the mother. What an ecstasy it would have been for her when she first realized how important she was for this world? What must have she gone through when we spent our cozy months inside her womb? What must have she felt undergoing all the pain but yet she held it all up for she wanted to greet us with her smile? What must have she felt when the same son she held in her hands threw up his hands in air and screamed on her face to leave him alone? What must have she felt on losing her self-worth and eminent position that Allah has blessed her with? Have you ever given a thought about what she undergoes every second she sees you in trouble? Will you be ever that child whom she would proudly declare to be the best and will you be ever that child because of whom she needs not be ashamed in front of Allah or anyone in this world?
What about the father without whom life would have been just as plain as the sandy deserts? The sleepless nights he had spent with your mother to support you, the immeasurable love he poured out to you, the genuine smile he gave you when things went wrong, when the wise words hit you when you were absolutely blindfolded by the so called pleasures of the world; the days he spent working just because he had to give his children everything they wished for; the modesty with which he let you dwell into your dreams and leave off the worries to him, and so on goes the list.
Have we forgotten everything? I am afraid that the answer would be a ‘yes’ by few and I am happy that the answer would be ‘absolutely no’ from many.
To say what they have done for us is needless, but to think what we have done for them is highly important. It is not the materialistic things that they ask for, they just ask for your support and love because that’s what they were hoping to get back when they nourished you all along. There might have been differences, world of conflicting thoughts, endless arguments but let us put all that behind and get on our feet to act rightly. You were once a kid and you asked them a number of questions for which they answered happily with a smile, but now they hardly ask you one single question and that too about your well-being but you just snap at them. Now, you may realize how far we have come.
It’s never too late, run back and embrace their pale bodies. No matter what happened, in the end; yours and their unity is what matters. A wreck in the relationship of mother/father with children is just too horrendous to hear and let alone to think of living in such a manner. They have put their hands forth for your warmth long ago, but when are you going to do the same?
It was narrated that Abu Hurairah (RA) said: A man came to Allah’s Messenger (PBUH) and asked, “Which of the people is most deserving of my best companionship?” He said, “Your mother.” He said, “Then who?” He said, “Then your mother.” He said, “Then who?” He said, “Then your mother.” He said, “Then who?” He said, “Then your father.”
(Hadith No. 5971, Book of Al-Adab, Sahih Bukhari, Vol. 8; Hadith No. 6500 (2548), Book of Al-Birr, Sahih Muslim, Vol. 6).