Saturday, September 24, 2005

Poetry - Odds and ends

Disclaimer - I'm writing about things I liked, am no expert on poetry :)

The other day, one of my friends, on chat, pasted to me some verses from some shayari he was reading. The usual hopelessly-in-love verses, I remarked. Though seeing the depths of those feelings in poetry certainly tugs at your heartstrings, especially with the intimacy that Urdu seems to bring (or maybe it is because of it being my mother tongue, even though I hardly undertand half of it), those feelings so marked by that hopeless fatalism, seem relegated to over-romantic fiction and indulged-in fantasies. I would definitely not want to be in those shoes, to be so carried away by desperate emotions! Of course, there are other sides to urdu poetry, only I haven't seen much of them - except some of Iqbal's poems, like Hamdardi - sweet, simple and poignant.

Can't find a link to Hamdardi, these are from 'Aata hai yaad mujhko ...', one of the few other poems of his that I've read.
lagatii hai choT dil par, aataa hai yaad jis dam
shabanam ke aa.Nsuuo.n par kaliyo.n kaa muskuraanaa

Somehow simpler words and expressions seem to make much more of an impact on me than
long-winded metaphor-filled poetry. Snip-snap, cut to the chase I say. This is a poem I'd copied from Roger Stevens' blog long ago, I like the instant identification you can make and the the rhythm of this poem too.

The Things You Are

The keeper of my heart
The healer of my soul
The hit song in my chart
The glue that makes me whole
The walker by my side
The holder of my hand
My student and my guide
The one who understands
The finisher of thoughts
My spokes, my wheel, my hub
The crosses and the noughts
My reggae and my dub
The laughter for my jokes
My wherefores and my wise
My hub, my wheel, my spokes
The blue that fills my skies
Disperser of my gloom
You blow my clouds away
The painter of my room
You brush away the grey
The seas that lap my shore
The rudder on my keel
The peel, the flesh, the core
My hub, my spokes, my wheel
The maker of my dreams
The slaker of my thirst
The miner of my seams
My second and my first
The raker of the leaves
That fall across my path
The one who still believes
The one who makes me laugh
My racing car of fun
The lock that fits my keys
The icing on my bun
Yes, you are all of these

I'm currently reading Possession by A.S. Byatt, it's fiction about two fictional poets. So she made up their poetry too, which is the labyrinthine fantastical kind (so the made-up poetry is described). I like the rhythm though, its nice singing it in your head.

All day snow fell
Snow fell all night
My silent lintel
Silted white
Inside a Creature -
Feathered - Bright -
With snowy Feature
Eyes of Light
Propounds - Delight.

( Her prose is also quite poetical. From a love letter - 'only write to me, write to me, I love to see the hop and skip and sudden starts of your ink - ...' or 'leaving Roland to an inner ear full of verbal ghosts')

I like blank verse too, but it should carry rhythm if not rhyme. I had wanted to make a post on this long ago but I shall do it now. This was a poem allegedly posted on the Hamas website, not very well-written but painful.

The rumbling noise of tanks
Crushing cars are heard,
Exploding machine guns
Echo in the air,
Mountains of fire burn down
Our town ...
What can I do ... ?
Each day,
The screams of mothers could be heard,
Each day,
The crying babies cry frantically,
Each day,
Men fight intensively ...
What can I do?
Each time an explosion occurs,
Bodies fall,
Each time a cry of freedom is heard,
Souls are lost,
Each time a mother cries,
A loved one is gone ...
Anger grows ...
What can I do?
Break a sweat,
Shed a tear,
Lose my blood,
Sacrifice my soul?

And I discovered Inkspillz' poems a few days ago. I loved them. To end on a light note, here's one of them -


Don’t Move!




You are welcome!

So, what were you saying?
You’re through with me?


Anonymous said...


(currently no blog ..)

infinity said...

urdu is certainly a language made for romantic poetry...'the things you r to me' is like something i would have written 3-4 years ago when i was a desperate teenager yet to fall in love...i liked the other 3..."hazaaron khwahishein aisi ki har khwahish pe dam nikle,bahut nikle mere armaan lekin phir bhi kam nikle..."

burf said...

pls modify ur links so that they auto open in a new window

GratisGab said...

Ah yes those verses...they're from "Parende Ki Fariyaad" right? Lovely poem indeed.

blister said...

Jab se chaman chhuta hain, yeh haal hogaya hai, Dil gham ko khaa raha hai, gham dil ko khaa raha hai. Aazaad karde mujhko o khaid karne wale, main be-zubaan hoon khaidi, tu chhod kar du'a le.....

ZuluBoy said...

Aadaab Sahiba. Yeh devil valey sign ka kya matlab hai ?

Suhail said...

Snip-snap, cut to the chase I say..

I admit it's slightly morose but you will definitely like this one from Abu Talib. Simple and effective.

kabhii aa.Nsuu kabhii Khushii bechii
ham Gariibo.n ne bekasii bechii

chand saa.Nse Khariidane ke liye
roz tho.Dii sii zindagii bechii

jab rulaane lage mujhe saaye
mai.n ne uqtaa ke raushanii bechii

ek ham the ke bik gaye Khud hii
varanaa duniyaa ne dostii bechii

infinity: I remember the first time I read the line following "hazaaron khwaahishe"(khuld.. Adam.. beaabroo nikle..), I was awed how Ghalib managed to squeeze Adam's story in 2 lines. Poetry is truly magical. However Urdu shayaris are not just about romantic poetry. Try reading Iqbal, Sahir..for that matter even Ghalib - these people have written on a variety of topics. And I'm sure Ghalib even has a sher or two on mangoes :D Need to dig them out.

manuscrypts said...

the bug's life was good :)

Arnav said...


bllisster said...

BBOORREEDD!! GGAAAAAYYY!!!(that seems to be a popular comment, so i thought it's in fasshhion) do another post man, enough of poetry, get RREEAALL aRRReady.....

Anonymous said...

yeah man, its been long, and i know ur excuse too, but u have to learn how to be creative :)


hi blister ;;). How you doo-in !


blister said...

Good, good ploy-boy, but it ain't modest to flirt on somebody else's blog ;)

blister said...

and yeah, it's howa Yoooou doin, if u did mean it all in Joey'esque

blister said...

CG2, if u don't write somethin new soon, we're prob'ly gonna hijack this page and turn it into a nonsense-spammer's page, what, eh?

thedq said...

cute :-)

blister? said...

Question Mark

A question mark,
Shaped like an ear,

Hopes to hear
The answer
To every

Likes to pry -
Nosy fellow
That he is.

Makes everybody's

Handa said...

update the blog already...

thou humblest blister from blister-shayer said...

puh-leeeeeezzz do another post, ur prose be-eth our life-blood, how shalt we breath hence forth, if thou writest not another post?

blister said...

does anybody have Nissim Ezekiel's 'For Kalpana' poem?

Anonymous said...

CG , its ok to flirt on someones blog. till u are caught that is :D and i dont think the cool cat is going to do that .. so its ok :D

and yeah How you doo-in is Joey ishtyle :D

(again with a blog ... muhahaha)

Sudha said...

Yeah, so I'm going to be one of the one lone voices of reason, and -gasp!- actually comment on your post.

If you've finished with 'Possession', you have to see the movie. I swear--Jeremy Northam is to die for!

Serious eye candy--left me in a puddle of eostrogen every time he appeared on screen! And Aaron Eckhart isn't bad either.=)

And coming back to books--if you get your hands on 'Eugenia Morpho' by one of the Byatts (don't remember if it's by A.S. or by Robin Byatt) read it--it's a nice,quirky read.

The Reporter said...

playboi, whatever :P And you and blister can flirt elsewhere :P

infinity, come on! It has a very good rhythm .. haan, urdu is made for romance i guess, more than others at least ..

burf, i use firefox, so I like them the way they are .. :-s

Suhail, thank you for the poem :) It is very nice .. I think I know the one on mangoes that you're talking about ..

The Reporter said...

gabby, you guessed right! :) And blister pasted the rest of the verses :)

zubbie, that was a hug!

manuscrypts, hehe :D You think so?

Arnav .. thanks :|

nupur, thanks :)

blister, did YOU write that poem? Its so cute!

handa, finally did so :)

blister from blister-shayer, loved that comment :)

The Reporter said...

sudha, the novel had pictures from the movie on the cover .. looked good though i cant imagine how they could have turned something that's so literary into a movie .. I know Eckhart, don't know the other guy, i guess he plays the poet? Loved Eckhart in After Sunset, that was him only no?

Okay, will try to read that book, havent heard of it yet though .. :)

Sudha said...

Haven't seen 'After Sunset', but he was in 'Paycheck' recently. And in 'The Missing', if you've seen it.

Yup, Jeremy N was the poet. Robert Something, if I remember correctly. He was also in 'An Ideal Husband'--the one with Minnie Driver and Cate Blanchette.

Don't worry,'Posession' was a good movie. And no, I didn't like it just because of Jeremy N.
Really. =)