The Ahkoond of Swat

"The Ahkoond of Swat is dead."--Press Dispatch

Original Text: 
Lanigan, George Thomas. "The Ahkoond of Swat." Canadian Poetry in English. Comp. Bliss Carman, Lorne Pierce and V. B. Rhodenizer. Toronto: Ryerson Press, 1954. PS8273 .C37 1954 Robarts Library
1What, what, what,
2What's the news from Swat?
3       Sad news,
4       Bad news,
5Comes by the cable led
6Through the Indian Ocean's bed,
7Through the Persian Gulf, the Red
8Sea and the Med-
9Iterranean--he's dead;
10The Ahkoond is dead!
11For the Ahkoond I mourn.
12       Who wouldn't?
13He strove to disregard the message stern,
14       But he Ahkoondn't.
15Dead, dead, dead;
16       Sorrow, Swats!
17Swats wha' hae wi' Ahkoond bled,
18Swats whom we had often led
19Onward to a gory bed,
20       Or to victory,
21       As the case might be.
22       Sorrow, Swats!
23Tears shed,
24       Shed tears like water,
25Your great Ahkoond is dead!
26       That Swat's the matter!
27Mourn, city of Swat!
28Your great Ahkoond is not,
29But lain 'mid worms to rot:
30His mortal part alone, his soul was caught
31(Because he was a good Ahkood)
32Up to the bosom of Mahound.
33Though earthly walls his frame surround
34(For ever hallowed be the ground!)
35And sceptics mock the lowly mound
36And say, "He's now of no Ahkound!"
37(His soul is in the skies!)
38The azure skies that bend above his loved
39       Metropolis of Swat
40He sees with larger, other eyes,
41Athwart all earthly mysteries--
42       He knows what's Swat.
43Let Swat bury the great Ahkoond
44   With a noise of mourning and of lamentation!
45Let Swat bury the great Ahkoond
46   With the noise of the mourning of the Swattish nation!
47       Fallen is at length
48       Its tower of strength,
49It's sun had dimmed ere it had nooned:
50Dead lies the great Ahkoond.
51       The great Ahkoond of Swat
52       Is not.
RPO poem Editors: 
Ian Lancashire
RPO Edition: 
2009
Form: