If you could be a “fly on the wall” anywhere at any time in history, where and when would you choose?
“Fly on the wall”, I would love to be at the time of Bahadur Shah Zafar, the last Mughal Emperor in India.
Bahadur Shah Zafar was the last of the mughal Emperors. He was an emperor at a time when the condition of the country was at its lowest ebb. His last days in his beloved land was difficult. He was accused of killing European women and children.There were charges laid against him which it was claimed would last till the world lasted.
He was frail and gaunt when he was threatened he’d be killed if he tried to escape. The Mughal emperor came out from the resting place of his ancestor after a long wait, one of unimaginable tragedy, hardship and humiliation.
I would like to be a fly on the wall when Bahadur Shah Zafar came to court at 11 am with his lawyer. How he tried to explain by hand gestures and his voice to impress the court of his innocence. It didn’t work, he was exiled to Rangoon now known as Myanmar.
He was a poet and spent his time writing poetry. One of the ones I liked was the one he wrote while he was in exile the following is the English translation from Urdu:
I had requested for a long life, a life of four days, two passed by in pining, and two in waiting.
How unlucky is Zafar ! he couldn’t get two yards of land in his beloved land.
My life has no ray nof light , I bring no solace to heart or eye, out of dust again, I am of no use to anyone.
I came to the world what did I see ? whatever it was it was like a dream. Man is moulded from clay but I saw him as a bubble of water!