This is a picture of a minar from a little masjid (mosque) which is in the center of Varanasi (Benaras).
The lines made by the wires are providing a poetic music paper which would be waiting for writing music in the sky…
Tonight the music will not play any sound, there are no notes to drop there, maybe the muezzin who will call later to prayer will remind us to honor the memory of a righteous man who left our little community.
We are all mourning his beautiful soul…
I never asked his name, over here it is rude to call elders by their name, he was Nishat’s father and this is how we always called him.
Nishat’s father was a Master embroiderer, a kind of magician who knew the finest secrets of the art of Zardozi embroidery, this ancient Persian art which has been passed down for many generations, dating back before the Mughal empire and which reached its zenith under the patronage of Emperor Akbar in the 17th century.
When I met him in his little workshop near the Ganges he was already blind, however he has been opening this art to me.
He was holding my hand, always happy and proud to show me the last masterpieces that his sons and grandsons were working at.
He has been teaching them his knowledge, probably like his own father did before.
He was a believer, sometimes he was praying Allah next to me.
Like everyone I was touched by his grace, by his kindness and by the way he was ajusting with all religions.
It happened that I was sitting next to him while he was in praise in front of an altar showing Jesus and Mary which was manufactured by his sons for the Pope in Rome, just nearby the ghats where an Hindu ceremony was going on.
There was a certain bliss, a lesson of peace and hope which is the legacy that he is leaving for us to share.
This is his portrait that I made two years ago.