Translated from Urdu by Musharraf Ali Farooqi
The experts from the Turkish Historical Society detailed on a secret mission dug up his grave and took away the skull. After the inspection and measurement of theÂ frontal, parietal and temporal bones;Â theÂ zygomatic arch, the nose bridge and other bones, it was proved that he was of Turkic race. Since the Armenian, Greek, and Albanian experts were not part of this exercise, the claim of these races onÂ SinÃ¢nÂ remains unrefuted. His faith, which could not be determined by the shape of the skull or any other bone, hangs between the contradictory traditions associated withÂ SinÃ¢n. The numerous palaces, infirmaries, bathhouses,Â kervansarais,Â the civil and military bridges, and theÂ aqueductsÂ constructed by him are rightfully exempt from identifying his race and faith. But a god’s eighty-four large and fifty-one small temples spread over the length and breadth of the sultanate wereÂ also aÂ testament to his craft. He was buried according to the Sultan’s faith. He received a simple cenotaph.
~ Afzal Ahmed Syed
Afzal Ahmed Syed’s selected poetry “Rococo and Other Worlds”Â was published in Musharraf Ali Farooqi’s translation by the Wesleyan University Press Poetry Series in 2010. His collected poetry in translation will be published by Yoda Press in 2013-2014. He has translated works by a number of Eastern European poets, as well as Gabriel GarcÃa Marquez, Jean Genet, William Saroyan, and Jonathan Treitel. Find out more about SyedÂ here.
Translator’s Bio: Musharraf Ali FarooqiÂ is a critically-acclaimed author, novelist and translator. His recent works include the novels “Between Clay and Dust”,Â “The Story of a Widow”, an illustrated bookÂ “Rabbit Rap: A Fable for the 21st Century”,Â and the translations of Indo-Islamic epicsÂ “The Adventures of Amir HamzaÂ and Hoshruba”. More information about the author is available on his website.Â
Featured Artwork by Emaan Mahmud.