The Quickening: Unknown Poetry of Ṭáhirih, volume 2

This second of the companion works is a translation of another manuscript discovered by Dhuká’í Bei?áíe. Like the source manuscript for Adam’s Wish, this text was conveyed to us by his son Bíjan Bei?áíe. This manuscript consists of 203 unnumbered pages and contains a mixture of poems and prose in Arabic and Persian with no mention of the transcriber, the calligraphers, or the date when the manuscript was transcribed. As with the previous volume, facsimiles of the poems in this manuscript are included at the end of the volume.

The Quickening thus contains poems that are most appropriate to the conclusion of the corpus of the poetry of ?áhirih inasmuch as they are largely dedicated to the announcement and celebration of the advent of the Day of Days, to the spiritual reformation of human society long promised in all the previous revealed religions and alluded to by the previous Manifestations of God, and to her own mission and martyrdom.  

The volume contains forty-two poems of varied style and length, from verses of two or three lines, to more formal and lengthy elucidations of what ?áhirih portrays as a milestone in human history—namely, the universal recognition of the essentially spiritual purpose of creation, and of revealed religion as the motive force in the dynamic progress of human society. What distinguishes these poems from the works in the previous two collections is apparent from the beginning—a consistent tone and spirit of praise, exultation, and the unleashed joy such as that which we discover only occasionally in what we might suppose to be her earlier poetry. 

The tenor of these verses is focused on announcing that the promised Manifestation alluded to by the Báb as “Him Whom God shall make manifest” (which is Bahá’u’lláh according to her poems) has in fact appeared, thereby fulfilling the “Quickening” that will herald the Day of Days when the peoples of the earth will be awakened, revitalized, and unified in a common understanding and appreciation of the Creator as the source of life and as the overseer of all human endeavors. 

A few sample poems

Leave a Comment