The First Gift From My Son
By Dr. Mohsin Atique Khan
When I started opening my bag to take out my clothes, my fingures touched upon a box, out of curiosity I took it out and was amazed to see a gift pack. It was a pencil box wrapped neatly and elegantly. I immediately remembered my wife saying, “Abdullah bought you a gift and put it in your bag” when I was leaving the village the day after the Eid after celebrating it with my family. At that time Abdullah appeared to be blushing and refused to tell me and his mother what he had put in my bag. I had not taken this seriously that time, but now I remembered the face of Abdullah and I found myself curious enough to find out what this box actually contains, a thought rushed to my my mind, is Abdullah mature enough now to buy a gift for his father? does he know what a father like me loves to have as a gift? Does he know the meaning of the gift? Does this mischievous and annoying boy loves me so much? Does he feel he will miss me after I leave the village?
I received the first gift from my son, and this is the best gift for me and a father like me, and I could not help myself but to admit his thorough understanding of my hobbies and liking. he must have noticed me busy with writing during the night after returning from my office, sometimes to dusk, and awake during the weekly holidays when I needed the rest. After seeing this pen, memories of a poem of Mohammad Nazim Nadwi flashed through my mind, that I had read during my school days some 20 years ago. The poem was originally written in Arabic when he got a gift from his teacher who had just returned from Deccan, and it can be roughly translated as below:
My lord gifted me a very slim pen from Deccan
This is more precious than the pearls and and slimmer than a beautiful figure
This is the best thing that can be gifted to a person who want to remain in good memories of the people
Oh, my goodness, this has the best ink of the world
how many penniless people have made great fortune through it during turbulent times.
And how many despicable people have earned respect and glory in their country by this.
This Arabic poem of an Indian poet describes the importance of the pen in human life and its value among the sons of Adam, and what can be more joyous and pleasurable for me than my son’s realization of the truth of the pen, the secret of success hidden in it, and its value that can not be guessed, the respect that it brings to its bearer, and the glory in which its user ushers, and the memories of its holder.
I remember Abdullah, who was only seven years old, was waiting along with his little brother for the joy of the Eid hoping to get the Edis from the adults in our house, and to see the fair of Eid. On the day of Eid he seemed to be the richest man on earth, and he kept the money received from elders in his pocket cautiously without allowing anyone to reach out to his pocket however he thought to spend some money to buy a pen for me. He bought the finest pen available in the village for me and in fact this is the most beautiful gift he could have ever given me.
May god bless you, your brother and sister my son.