The magnificent Taj Mahal
Several years ago I had visited the town of Agra, in northern India, to see the monument “Taj Mahal”, which was built by the seventeenth century Mughal Emperor, Shah Jehan, to commemorate his departed queen, Mumtaz Mahal. The magnificent monument is considered one of the ‘Seven Wonders of the World’ and to add soul to its magnificence, is the history of true love which transgresses the passage of time and lives up to eternity.
The tombs of Shah Jehan and Mumtaz Mahal
Shah Jehan was the third son of the Mughal Emperor Jehangir and ascended the throne in 1627. He was his father’s favorite prince and was sent on all important campaigns during his rule. He had met a beautiful Persian Princess, at the age of 14 and fell deeply in love with her. He married her in 1612 and named her Mumtaz Mahal. He maintained his deep love even after marriage. She accompanied him in most of his campaigns and bore him 13 lovely children. However, fate played a cruel trick and she died while giving birth to their 14th. child in 1631. The aggrieved Emperor was inconsolable and took a decision to build a mausoleum for her that would exceed in grandeur any other tomb ever built. This would keep her memory alive forever.
The work on the construction of Taj Mahal began in 1632. The best masons, architects, calligraphers, carvers, artisans, painters from all over his empire and the regions of Central Asia, were requisitioned. It was built with the best white marble, which were inlaid with semiprecious stones. The stones were later looted by invaders, who also damaged some portions of the mausoleum. It took 22 years and cost a huge amount of money to complete.
When I saw this epitome of true love, I was awestruck ! I could not find words to describe its grandeur. If all the marble slabs could speak, they would sing paeans on the glory of eternal love. I just recollected the beautiful poem on eternal love written by B.L.Johnson:
A lake that sets my heart a blaze
Like lovers lost in a distant gaze.
Eternal souls that have no name
Drawn together like moth to a flame.
An unspoken love that could never be seen
Unites two hearts with only a dream.
A love forbidden by lifes cruel fate
Longs for the kiss of its one true mate.
A destined encounter which never took place
Condemned our love and left no trace.
A bond once blessed and worshipped from afar
Can no longer be seen but written in the stars.
For this week’s prompt, let’s create a response for “awestruck.” Post poetry, prose, a memoir, nonfiction, or an essay