THE PAINFUL WAIL
This is the first poem in B«ng-i-Dar« representing All«mah Iqb«l's nationalistic sentiments. He laments lack of amity between the Muslims and Hindus, which were the two major nations in the Indian sub-continent. His pain was aggravated by the fact that this lack of amity was delaying the independence of India from Britain. Several poems on this subject will follow. These poems have created misunderstanding about the political ideology of All«mah Iqb«l. Opinion has been expressed by some responsible persons that he was initially an Indian nationalist and was only swept away by the "separatist ideology of the Muslim League" into what the Indian Hindus call "communalism". This opinion betrays complete ignorance of the works and thought of All«mah Iqb«l as well as the basics of Islam. See Chapter 3 under "Political Ideology" for a discussion of this subject.
It is explained therein that All«mah Iqb«l loved India and its natural beauty and had respect for its heroes and heroines 1. He wanted to establish Hindu-Muslim amity to hasten India's independence from Britain. However, his political ideology was not the Western style democratic system but pan-Islamism.
Consumed with grief I am, I get relief in no way
O circumambient waters of the Ganges drown me
Our land foments excessive mutual enmity
What unity ! Our closeness harbors separation
Enmity instead of sincerity is outrageous
Enmity among the same barns grains is outrageous
If the brotherly breeze has not entered in a garden
No pleasure can be derived from songs in that garden
Though I exceedingly love the real closeness
I am upset by the mixing of waves and the shore
The miraculous poet is like the grain from the barn
The grain has no existence if there is no barn
How can beauty unveil itself if no one is anxious for sight
Lighting of the candle is meaningless if there is no assembly
Why does the taste for speech not change to silence
Why does this brilliance not appear out from my mirror
Alas! My tongue poured its speech down
When wars fire had burnt the garden down
1. The metaphor of "shore" and "waves" are used here for an enclosed area like a country and an expanding ideology , like Islam , respectively. In this verse Iqb«l exhibits his perturbation for Islam being restricted with in the space of a country .