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To the Punjab Pirs

STOOD by the Reformer's tomb: that dust
Whence here below an orient splendour breaks,
Dust before whose least speck stars hang their heads,
Dust shrouding that high knower of things unknown
Who to Jehangir would not bend his neck,
Whose ardent breath fans every free heart's ardour,
Whom Allah sent in season to keep watch
In India on the treasure-house of Islam.
I craved the saints' gift, other-worldliness
For my eyes Saw, yet dimly. Answer came:
'Closed is the long roll of the saints; this Land
Of the Five Rivers stinks in good men's nostrils.
God's people have no portion in that country
Where lordly tassel sprouts from monkish cap
That cap bred passionate faith, this tassel breeds
Passion for playing pander to Government.'

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