Tag Archives: truth

Amongst others…

I am presently heading off to Dublin for a while and then onwards to various locations for a short trip. The reasons for my visit are many and while some are more important than others, I find that the reasons themselves lead me to think that whatever we do in life may carry multiple reasons. Of course, there are actions which only have a singular reason i.e. drinking water to quench thirst but for actions that carry more meaning such as a look given to a friend or a gentle brushing of a lover’s arm can carry so much more. One reason is often included amongst others and depending on the time and place, any one of those reasons can become more important than others. With that thought, I present this poor ghazal below that formed itself in my mind.

درِ یار  آے،  آنے  سے  بیزار  بھی  تھے

مسکراے تو تھے، روے زار زار بھی تھے

 

کارنامہ  نا  تھا   وہ  میرا  کلمہِ حق

خوفِ خدا تو تھا، زیرِ تلوار بھی تھے

 

مانا کے عشق ہماری کم عقلی سہی پر

آپ  تو عاقل تھے،  ہوشیار بھی تھے

 

اب  کیوں  پوچھیں آپ  وقوعِ مقتل؟

وہاں ہم بھی تھے، سرکار بھی تھے

 

کون تیار نہ تھا مجھے قتل کرنے کو

دشمن تو دشمن،  یارِ غار بھی تھے

 

کچھ  اس طرح  دفتر کی  نوکری  چلی

ہم مصروف بھی تھے، بےکار بھی تھے

 

وجہِ عشق  تو  پیچیدا  نہیں  استاد  کی

کچھ وہ مائل بھی تھے لاچار بھی تھے

 

So I went to her door

But I was not quite into it

Although I smiled

I also wept

 

And it wasn’t a great feat

For me to speak the truth

Although I am an ethical man

I was also held at gun point

 

Yes, it was foolish of me

To fall in love

But you

Were supposed to be wise

 

And why do you ask

What happened at the harvest of blood?

I was there

And so were you

 

They were all eager

To cause harm to each other

My friends

And my adversaries

 

The mundane war

The daily strife

Keeps me busy

And bores me as well

 

So its not difficult to understand

Why he loves

His reasons amongst others

Include his affinity and his helplessness

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Filed under Ghazal, Poetry

The Minister

اب بھی کچھ ان سے رغبت کریں

سچ  یہ  کے اب  بھی محبت کریں

I still

Admire her deeply

Truth be told

I still find her fascinating

 

خواب دیکھا تھا کے وصال ہوا تھا

چلو خواب کو اک  حقیقت  کریں

A dream

About union

Should be turned

Into a reality soon

 

معمہ ہے  پیامِ  نظر و اشارہِ  یار

کبھی کریں کریں کبھی مت کریں

Her eyes carry

Mysterious messages

Sometimes yes

Sometimes no

 

پیامِ  مشیرِ  خاص  بنامِ  وزیرِ  اظم

جمہوریت کو چھوڑیں خالفت کریں

The minster

Sends a message

To the prime minister

Forget democracy, lets have a caliphate

 

بات ان کی باتوں سے باتوں میں آئی

یہ  بات  وہ بات  کس کی بابت کریں

A word

From a conversation

Within a conversation

What was that word concerning?

 

واعظِ پرسوز ہم کو تو یوں لگا

میاں  فصیحت نصیحت کریں

A heartfelt sermon

Appears to be

One coming from

A whiskey priest

 

تھک چکے جہاں گردی سے ہم

چلو اب ہم  خوابِ راحت کریں

And I am tired

From roaming the world

Let us now

Sleep for a bit

 

عذاب بن چکے وہ میرے فیصلے

خدا سے کہو کوئی رحمت کریں

Those past decisions

Have become a torture

Ask God

To have mercy on me

 

حکمِ  حاکم  ہوا  مرے  حال  پر

اسی  حال پے اب قناعت کریں

The judge

Tells me

Stay as you are

Remain patient

سفید بال استاد کے دیتے ہیں مشورہ

عمرِ  آخر آ چکی  وصیت  کریں

Those white hair

Of his suggest to him

To make a will

Prepare for the next world

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Quite Unlikely…

لبِ دریا، جام و مینا، مہ کامل نظر آتا ہے

میرے  یار تیرا بچنا،  مشکل  نظر آتا ہے

A quiet beach

The cup and the measure, the full moon

It is quite unlikely

That you’ll survive this

 

ابھی ہٹائیں کے نہ یہ لٹیں تیرے رخ سے

چاند چہرہ پسِ زلف، بمشکل نظر آتا ہے

So should I brush away?

The stray hair strands from your face

You moon like beauty

Appears somewhat hidden

 

اک نگاہ میں جان گئے تیرے دل کے راز

صاف چہرے پے، حالِ  دل  نظر  آتا ہے

With one look

I knew what you hid

Your face reveals

What your heart conceals

 

کون کہتا ہے کے خدا دکھائی نہیں دیتا

ہر جاہ وہ جلوہ نما!  بلکل نظر آتا ہے

And who says

That beauty can not be seen

I see her signs everywhere

I absolutely do!

 

کدھر ہے وہ  گستاخ  سچ گو شاعر؟

وہی یہاں سزا کے قابل نظر آتا ہے

Where is that inordinate poet

That dares to speak the truth

He deserves

A severe punishment

 

کون مانے گا؟ یہ صورت اور یہ حرکت

لوگ بولیں استاد شکلأ، عاقل نظر آتا ہے

And who will believe

A match between visage

And habits

The people say he looks reasonable enough

 

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Filed under Ghazal, Poetry

The complaint

Mirza Asadullah Khan Ghalib was one of the greatest poets who ever lived in the Mughal Empire. More than his poetry, it is his life and love for life that I find quite inspiring. Undoubtedly, his words have inspired generations of poets that followed him and I still find his diwan (collection of poetic writings) to be quite delightful. The first couplet of the diwan is reproduced below:

نقشِ فریادی  ہے  کس کی  شوخیِ تحریر  کا

کاغذی    ہے   پیرہن    ہر  پیکرِ  تصویر  کا

Naqsh-e-faryaadi hai kis ki shaukhi-e tehreer ka

Kagazi hai pairahan har paikar-e tasveer ka

A rather simplified meaning of this couplet is:

This sign made by the one who complaints

Is it a mischief through writing?

Every image worthy of being admired

Wears paper thin clothes

Obviously, different thinkers and critics have applied their own meanings to the words and a very powerful as well as detailed explanation (along with criticism) can be found at the Ghalib index maintained by Columbia University. I suggest you read it if you’re so inclined. It does explain a lot of the difficulty in translating poetic thought, particularly from languages such as Persian and Urdu. As I reflected on Ghalib’s words, a rather dismal ghazal formed in my mind, of which the hasil-e-ghazal (primary meaningful verse) is the second couplet.

ان مناظر  پے  اب  دھیان کون کرے

ترے سامنے تعریفِ جہاں کون کرے

These vistas

Are immaterial

Am I to waste time praising the world?

Or should I admire your beauty?

j

شوخیِ تحریر تو جرم  ٹھہری یاروں

فریادی  موجود پر، نشان کون کرے

And it is a crime to write

Or to make a mark

The injured party is there

Who registers the complaint?

j

دیوانگی میں افسردگی؟  ہنسی اتی ہے

ہم ہنسے  رقیب ہنسے،  فغاں کون کرے

A sense of sadness

With a hint of insanity

It makes me and him laugh

But who cries?

j

کیوں  صدائیں  اپنی جدا  ہو گئیں

آج تجھ کو میرا،  ہمنوا کون کرے

And for some reason

We now have different beliefs

Who today

Will make us sing in harmony

j

فیضی ضبطِ حالی، اقبالی کم نصیبی

اب  تیرے  در کو،  آستان  کون  کرے

Faiz like patience

Poor timing as Iqbal

Now who shall make your house

A dwelling

j

کوئی تو  ہے یہاں,  جو من میں  آتا ہے

یوں میری جان کو، جانِ جان کون کرے

You are creeping further

Right into my heart

Turning my life

Into the life of your life

j

رنگے مرے ہاتھ اسی کے لہو سے

اب مرے ہاتھوں کو، حنا کون کرے

And my hands are soaked

In her blood

Who shall now

Put henna on my hands?

j

یہ  شہر  تو تیرے  اسیروں کا ہے

جو  قید توں کرے، رہا  کون کرے

This city belongs to those

Who have been ensnared by your tresses

And who can free

Whom you have captured

j

عجب بے دلی سی ہے سرِ شام

جفا  ہوتی نہیں،  وفا کون کرے

Without her

The evening feels sad

I am accused of being faithless

Who can be faithful?

j

بس   کر یہ فتوے   بازی   او قاضی

جنہے  رب اک  کرے، جدا کون کرے

Please stop

Passing judgements and sentences

Individuals who are made to think alike

Are alike in action

j

کچھ سبب تو ہے، کے خاموشی ہے

اک  راز پنہاں ہے،  آیاں کون کرے

There must be a reason

For this silence

A secret, hidden

Who makes it obvious?

j

ہے تو استادِ بے باک جو سچا ہے

جراتِ گناہ اسکے سوا کون کرے

And it is only I

Who says the truth

This courage to sin

Belongs to none other

j

اَلصَّلاَةُ خَيْرٌ مِّنَ النَّوْمِ سنا صبحِ ازل

ایسی  پر  سوز  اذان  کون  کرے؟

With first light I heard

Worship is better than sleeping

Who said

Those beautiful words?

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A Demanding God… خدا جیسا نہیں ہے کوئی

خدا جیسا نہیں ہے کوئی یہاں پے وفا طلب

حکمِ  نعراِ حق ہوا لازم، ہو چاہے جاں بلب

بے فیض میرا تقویٰ ، غرقِ  دریا میرا ایماں

کے اک لحظہ قبلِ موت ہم ہوے زباں سلب

 

A jealous God indeed and quite demanding too

I am ordered to say the truth even if lay dying

My faith useless and my belief empty

if I remain silent, but a moment before my passing

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