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saadat tahir

Rookie - 634 Points (21011965 / Islamabad-Pakistan)

A Date with mem-Sahib...History with chemistry


'Konkani Mai Ascends the Throne'
(Hyperlinks are highly recommended to grasp the aura of this poem)
Dedicated to the memory of Fernando da Costa Leal

On the horizon is a winding road.
Bent ol man is lugging his load.

Far out to sea; a billowing sail.
The peacock struts an lends a wail.

The distant hills a beauteous view
Mid morn it is, and where the crew?

Sky an the earth meet and end.
oh! Saladin go, an for them send.

Haven't got all day to sit an wait
Pooch won't be bathed at this rate

Horses are restless back in the barn
The gypsy girls are out picking corn

A commotion near the outhouse there
Pushpa hurry! Go get Ramsingh here

Ah Hariram; the postman is cycling in
Oh! Ramsingh check that infernal din

Excuse mem-sb it's the Konkani binge
They've stolen the Mai's cartage sling

No wonder my! They are so upset,
Go tell Sahib; an them not to fret

Pushpa's full of mysterious lure
Let it happen? I might have a cure

Agustus hasn't felt me, in this year.
I Wonder now, how long can I bear?

Hariram Ah! you have this wad
He looks well built an yes so sad

The sweat has run, down his shirt
Muscled leg's, have caught some dirt


Starched turban, whistle an rap
Brawny like a fruit tree full of sap.

Ya..uh..umm it's a letter from mum
Hariram! Oh! Why don't you come?

I've got this carton that you'll pack
Phuspa's sneaky, the witching hack

She's ebony black an white her teeth
Well endowed and braids like a wreath

I know she's caught Augustus' eye
Mass at Basilica, he left on the sly

She's so earthy with heathen ways
Wherefore now the inquisition days

Hariram here hold me up the stool
Bother I think, he can't be a fool

Oh come on Hariram; a little bit up
His eyes I saw, were a brimming cup

Gingerly at first he held my back
Rasped me then, against the rack

My legs went weak, and I drooped
Lowered me down and slowly stooped

In a flash it hit me, a punch of whiff
By myside I felt him, eager an stiff

Breathed he heavy in an guttural hiss
Taught me the meaning of earthly bliss

My elation's path sullied in dirt
No taboos chain, raunch and flirt

lay I ravished an the stair creaked
knew well Pushpa, what I seaked

(Islamabad)
(April 24,2009)

Submitted: Tuesday, April 28, 2009
Edited: Friday, July 19, 2013


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Poet's Notes about The Poem

A date with mem-sahib- explanation

(most of the links and pics have been parsed in posting here)
To the poem above...
this is just the explanation, with out the pics and links the poem is rather less engrossing

This poem is set in colonial Portugal; Goa, India 1910. At an excusive enclave where the colonial masters lived in sprawling splendor and had a host of local servants and followers to pamper their wishes and whims. It is…..

Dedicated to the memory of

Fernando da Costa Leal
(an army officer, writer, poet and Portuguese botanist) 15 October 1846 Margão Portuguese India - 4 April 1910 Goa, Portuguese India
As administrator he displayed great sympathy to Indian culture. He was liberal in his attitude and a proponent of reform. Da Costa Leal spent the final years of his life in Panjim and died there on 4 April 1910 and was buried there.
Altinho is Portuguese for 'high' or tall; a locality atop the hillock of Panaji (or Panjim) , the state capital of India's smallest state Goa, which was a former Portuguese colony. In the past it has been considered an elite residential colony, with the State's chief minister's residence and the Archbishop's palace located here. Although Altinho is a residential area, it is a home to Panaji's All India Radio station (whose precursor was the famed Emissora de Goa radio station of Portuguese times) . It is also home to a sprawling set of quarters for government servants, and homes allotted to ruling party politicians
http: //en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Fernando_da_Costa_Leal

Mean while half a world away at the same time a monster with a conviction was rearing its head…..
In December of 1909, freezing and half starved, Hitler moved into a homeless shelter. He ate at a soup kitchen operated by the nuns from a nearby convent.
In February 1910 after dumping his old friend August Kubizek he moved into a home for poor men where he would stay for the next few years. Hitler sometimes earned a little money as a day laborer, shoveling snow and carrying bags at the train station………………………
Now, at age 21, he was becoming keenly interested in politics, watching events unfold around him in Vienna……….
…………..He had no real interest in women, preferring to keep away from them and even smugly rebuffed those who showed any interest in him. He strictly adhered to his Catholic upbringing regarding sex, believing men and women should remain celibate until marriage.
'I never knew the beautiful word youth.' -Hitler stated in a well known letter.


1910: The Portuguese monarchy ends.

'Konkani Mai Ascends the Throne'

Young men of the village brave the heat to complete the five-kilometer procession in the company of the deity. The procession consists mostly of men who wear traditional headgear and color their bodies with dye and what not. The procession begins at noon and reaches Cuncolim at around 3 p.m.
The colorful and ceremonious procession makes its way to Cuncolim to the beat of traditional music accompanied by 12 silken umbrellas, one of which is completely red in color.
Once in Cuncolim, young people dance with the umbrellas to music while devotees take Prasad blessings from the deity, which is doled out by Hindu priests. The umbrellas are propelled to a height of 10 meters (11 yards) by bamboo sticks.
The dancing ends around 5: 30 p.m., when the deity is taken back to Fatorpa along a different route.
The 12 umbrellas represent the 12 clans or patrons of the temple at Cuncolim.
'The umbrellas are strong symbols of the common history and kinship of the villages, continued common devotion to a powerful goddess and the existence of a common Goan culture that has existed for centuries, wrote Paul Newman, in a paper titled 'Konkani Mai Ascends the Throne.' (Konkani is the official language of Goa.)
The traditional procession was forbidden by the Portuguese government at the request of then-patriarch Antonio Sebastiao Valent of the Roman Catholic Church. The ban was subsequently lifted in 1910 after the Portuguese republic was set up.
As early as 1822 Goans were permitted to elect, on a franchise determined by property and religious affiliation, two representatives to the Portuguese parliament. In 1910 official discrimination against Hindus was repealed which in turn led to an outburst of intellectual, cultural and political life in Goa.

Comments about this poem (A Date with mem-Sahib...History with chemistry by saadat tahir )

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  • Rookie Mamta Agarwal (6/3/2009 10:40:00 PM)

    wonderful, humourous, ironic- Saadat, you have really brought the whole scenario alive. perfect control of syntax and vivid word pictures- add to my fav list for further reading pleasure.
    foot notes are interesting.10++

    Mamta (Report) Reply

  • Rookie Kausar Mahmood (5/31/2009 4:54:00 AM)

    Along with the love of civilization & historical perspectives do reflect the command on english...... it is a nice creation
    km (Report) Reply

  • Rookie - 38 Points Indira Babbellapati (5/30/2009 9:56:00 AM)

    this is like seeing a vast canvas of a collage...difficult to make wrod picutes and u did it with utmost falicity! (Report) Reply

  • Rookie - 0 Points Anjali Sinha (5/11/2009 6:40:00 AM)

    again another masterpiece
    you seem to have done a perfect study
    of the mem-sahib
    perhaps a PHD on that
    A+++
    anjali (Report) Reply

  • Rookie rago rago (5/10/2009 7:18:00 PM)

    It is a poem seems to have been written from the heart and presented in a way to conquer the world........ pain taking but with a firm mind written... thank you for your kind sharing the history too. certainly marks will not suffice the poem.. (Report) Reply

  • Rookie - 218 Points Ruth Walters (5/9/2009 6:48:00 AM)

    This is very interesting, including, of course, the explanation. The poem very well written indeed.

    Ruthy (Report) Reply

  • Rookie Rory Hudson (5/8/2009 6:29:00 AM)

    Good one. A bit obscure without the explanation you give, but the main thing is, it paints a vivid picture of a lot of scenes making up a colourful canvas, as it were. It was particularly interesting for me since my wife is Konkani, though from the Mangalore area rather than Goa. (Report) Reply

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