After Tomorrow the Days Disappear: Ghazals and Other Poems

13 Dec 2017

Pity Christopher Marlowe, who had the misfortune of being born in the same year as William Shakespeare. While every teenager in the English-speaking world is compelled to read several of Shakespeare’s plays, Marlowe is just a name, a “not-Shakespeare,” to nearly everyone except English literature majors. In late thirteenth- and early fourteenth-century Delhi, the poet whose fame crowds out the others was Amīr Khusraw (1253‒1325). Writing three centuries later, the historian ʿAbdul Qādir Badāʾūnī compared Khusraw to the morning sun and his contemporaries to stars who faded in his brilliance. The brightest of these, the Marlowe to Khusraw’s Shakespeare, was Ḥasan Sijzī Dihlavī (1254‒c. 1330). In fact, the two men were close friends and fellow disciples of the Chishti Sufi saint Ḥażrat Niẓāmuddīn Awliyā (1238‒1325).