Bricks [Spoken Word]


Today we walked through the town of Fatehgarh Sahib
Our daughters have read books for years on the lives and deaths of our beloved Sahibzade
But as parents, the books were not enough

We wanted them to walk the same ground that Baba Zorwarar Singh walked
To touch the same soil where Baba Fateh Singh’s blood fell
To feel the warmth of Mata Gujri’s presence while standing in the Tunda Burj
We wanted them to see the wall with their own eyes
To run their hands across the bricks
To hear the story those bricks tell
I wish I could rip those bricks right out of the walls and put them in their backpacks so they will alway feel the weight of their sacrifice in every step, in every mile they walk for the rest of their lives
Our history cannot just be told
It must be felt

As we sat in Gurdwara FatehGarh Sahib
The guru’s shabad was flowing all around us
But as parents, feeling the presence of the chotay sahibzade around us
Listening to the shabad wasn’t enough
It wasn’t just the shabad I wanted them to hear
I wanted them to feel that the guru was near
I didn’t want them to just listen to the raag and the reet
I wanted them to hear the guru’s heartbeat
They already know our baani is a gem
But I want them to know that the guru is speaking to them
I don’t want the shabad to just flow through their ears
I want the shabad to move them and bring them to tears
Our baani cannot just be sung
It must be felt

Standing in FatehGarh Sahib, armed with baani and history
I wanted them to feel that they are invincible
That they have the inspiration to move mountains and they stood in the very place where our heroes showed us how
I wanted them to feel the rush, that divine thrill
That calm and cool feeling of acceptance of guru’s will
That the price we pay for the guru’s setting us free
Is that they have to live a life that’s bigger than “me”
That when injustice is near and you’re not sure where to begin
That they hear the call of the khalsa panth from within
That they never be a bystander, always stay true
And when the world needs an ally, know that ally is you
When armed with baani and history, you can face any attack
Because your guru’s always with you, and he’s always got your back
And when the weight of the world’s problems brings them down
They know their sangat will be the net that will help them rebound
I want them to know the life of a gursikh is rare,
The path is sharper than a sword, and finer than a hair


Our path cannot be explained
It must be walked

Sitting steps away from where our chotay sahibzade gave their lives
I knew that as a parent, I cannot let
Gurmat be a subject we learn like math and science
Or something we take our kids to on Sunday
Or that extra checkbox we need to make our kids well-rounded
But instead, gurmat must be the lens in which they view the world
The way in which they approach everything else in their life
Because when it comes down to it…it is our everything

It is our Sikhi that determines what we give and what we take
It is our Sikhi that guides us in the decisions we make
It is our Sikhi that helps us know right from wrong
It is our Sikhi when in fear, will help us stay strong
And when our conviction is tested, it will not matter what we’ve been taught
It is our Sikhi that will show us how much courage we’ve got
Not just that tough-guy courage
But the courage in our actions when no one else is looking

I want them to know

That a seven and nine year old
didn’t give their lives so we can reminisce and cry
They gave their lives so we can hold our heads high
So when the Wazir Khans of the world put us to the test
We stand up, brave and fierce, and let Waheguru handle the rest


Photo Credit:  Taken by RP Singh; original preserved brick of Qila Anandgarh Sahib, at Anandpur Sahib, Panjab

About RP Singh

Writer. Poet. Organizer. View all posts by RP Singh

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