mayay nee main kino aakhan
inherently the pleading for repreive, from suffering, the mere expression of longing for love and then the character of a "mother" as a comrade in arms a confidante runs deep in the poetic tradition in the punjab and sindh.
there are multiple words like "ama", "amar", "ayal" and some others just to describe "mother" in the Risalo of the Shah
In any case, reading "Recurrent patterns in Punjabi Poetry" and relishing the parallel between Shah Latif and Shah Hussain/Bullay Shah etc. and while "mother" would be character the lady (Heer) would turn to, the first chapter on Shah Hussain draws interesting inferences from this maternal character.
So this is where i take up an excerpt
"nee maayay mainoon khaireyaan dee gaal na aakh"
the kafi suggests the underlying folk-song pattern. the usual figures in the marriage songs - the girl, the mother, the prospective husband and in-lws are all there. And the refrain calls the plaintive marriage song address of the girl to her mother on the eve of her departure from the parents' house.
But the folk pattern remains at the level of an underlying suggestion. The mother and daughter in the folk-song were both helpless votaries of an accepted convention, bowing before the acknowledged power of an unchanging order.
Here in the "kafi" the daughter assumes the power of choice and rejection. She stands outside the cycles of time and society. The mother continues to represent the social order and the accepted attitudes.
According to her convictions, the Kheras offer the best possible future to her daughter because they assure mundane security and presitge within a decaying order. But the daughter is now determined to go beyond this order and seek further inner development.
To her the Kheras, her unacceptable in-laws represent the tyranny forced on the individual. To her, Ranjha the socially condemned cowherder represents the consummation of her revold, promising a union which is the real inner fulfillment.
The accepted attitudes are based on a superficial vision which takes appearance to be the only reality. Ranjha who always hides his real self behind the shabby garb of a 'jogi' or a cowhereder can never be preferred to the wealthy Kheras.
His real entity is a mystery that can be realised only in Heer's individual emotions. And for such a realisation a conscious break with the order of appearances is a pre-requisite.
(Shah) Hussain's truimph is achieved, not by evading the bondages but by suffering them and finally transforming them. The mother remains a part of the daughter consciousness - in addressing her she addresses herself. But this part of her consciousness is now subjected to the more vital individual self. In this refrain (the first line of the kafi), a mixture of earnest protestation and assured abandon.
(to be continued)