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Nov 21, 2009
08:49 AM
Ungifted, unintelligent, giving dire evidence of a shoddy mind filled with stale cliches: that is Faiz and all the Urdu "poets".

Nothing here of the toughness of TS Eliot, of Neruda, of Pound.
Momeen Rashid
Delhi, India
Nov 21, 2009
11:31 AM
Faiz was a progressive shayar; who didn't believe in concept of, "art for art's sake", and wanted to bring a social change with his poetry.While his work is written in fairly strict diction, his poems maintain a casual, conversational tone, creating tension between the elite and the common, somewhat in the tradition of Ghalib. Faiz is especially celebrated for his poems in traditional Urdu forms, such as the ghazal, and his remarkable ability to expand the conventional thematic expectations to include political and social issues.
asif sultan
shreveport, usa
Nov 21, 2009
11:34 AM
Faiz wrote stark poems of outrage over the bloodshed between Pakistan, India, and what later became Bangladesh. However, when Bhutto was overthrown by Zia Ul-Haq, Faiz was forced into exile in Beirut, Lebanon. There he edited the magazine Lotus, and continued to write poems in Urdu.

by Faiz Ahmed Faiz
Translated by Naomi Lazard

India-Pakistan War: 1965

Since our lights were extinguished
I have been searching for a way to see;
my eyes are lost, God knows where.

You who know me, tell me who I am,
who is a friend, and who an enemy.
A murderous river has been unleashed
into my veins; hatred beats in it.

Be patient; a flash of lightning will come
from another horizon like the white hand
of Moses with my eyes, my lost diamonds.
asif sultan
shreveport, usa
Nov 21, 2009
11:51 AM
This ghazal was written by Faiz after he saw the atrocities by Pakistani army on people of Bangladesh. His lines,"khoon ke dhabbe dhulenge kitni barsaaton ke baad", is classic faiz.
ham ke Thahare ajanabii itane madaaraato.n ke baad
phir bane.nge aashnaa kitanii mulaaqaato.n ke baad

kab nazar me.n aayegii bedaaG sabze kii bahaar
Khuun ke dhabbe dhule.nge kitanii barasaato.n ke baad

the bahut bedard lamhe.n Khatm-e-dard-e-ishq ke
thii.n bahut bemahar subahe.n meharabaa.N raato.n ke baad
asif sultan
shreveport, usa
Nov 21, 2009
11:57 AM
Faiz studied philosophy and English literature, but poetry and politics preoccupied him more than anything else. For writing poetry that always antagonizes the ruling Úlite and challenges colonial and feudal values, like such rebellious writers as Ngugi of Kenya and Darwish of Palestine, Faiz had to go to jail repeatedly during both colonial and postcolonial times in Pakistan. Inspired by the Marxist ideology, Faiz's poetry exhibits a strong sense of commitment to lower-class people, yet it always maintains a unique beauty nourished by the long, rich tradition of Urdu literature. His love poems are as appealing as his political poems, and he is considered primarily responsible for shaping poetic diction in contemporary Urdu poetry.
asif sultan
shreveport, usa
Nov 21, 2009
11:59 AM

Faiz Ahmed Faiz

is tarah hai ke har ek peR ko’ii mandir hai
ko’ii ujRaa huaa, benuur puraanaa mandir
DhuunDtaa hai jo Kharaabii ke bahaane kab se
chaak har baam, har ek dar kaa dam-e-aaKhir hai
aasmaaN ko’ii purohit hai jo har baam tale
jism par raaKh male, maathe pe sinduur male
sar-niguuN baithaa hai chup-chaap na jaane kab se
is tarah hai ke pas-e-pardaa ko’ii saahir hai
jis ne aafaaq pe phailaayaa hai yuN seh’r ka daam
daaman-e-vaqt se paivast hai yuN daamna-e-shaam
ab kabhii shaam bujhegii na andheraa hogaa
ab kabhii raat Dhalegii na saveraa hogaa
aasmaaN aas liye hai ke ye jaaduu TuuTe
chup ki zanjiir kaTe, vaqt kaa daaman chhuTe
de ko’ii shanKh duhayii, ko’ii paayal bole
ko’ii but jaage, ko’ii saaNvlii ghuuNGhat khole

Translation by Agha Shahid Ali

The trees are dark ruins of temples,
seeking excuses to tremble
since who knows when–
their roofs are cracked,
their doors lost to ancient winds.
And the sky is a priest,
saffron marks on his forehead,
ashes smeared on his body.
He sits by the temples, worn to a shadow, not looking up.
Some terrible magician, hidden behind curtains,
has hypnotized Time
so this evening is a net
in which the twilight is caught.
Now darkness will never come–
and there will never be morning.
The sky waits for this spell to be broken,
for history to tear itself from this net,
for Silence to break its chains
so that a symphony of conch shells
may wake up to the statues
and a beautiful, dark goddess,
her anklets echoing, may unveil herself.
asif sultan
shreveport, usa
Nov 21, 2009
12:04 PM
Faiz Ahmed Faiz
Pass Raho

tum mere paas raho
mere qaatil, mere dildaar, mere paas raho
jis gha.Dii raat chale
aasamaano.n kaa lahuu pii kar siyah raat chale
marham-e-mushk liye nashtar-e-almaas chale
bain karatii hu_ii, ha.Nsatii hu_ii, gaatii nikale
dard kii kaasanii paazeb bajaatii nikale
jis gha.Dii siino.n me.n Duubate huye dil
aastiino.nme.n nihaa.N haatho.n kii rah takane nikale
aas liye
aur bachcho.n ke bilakhane kii tarah qul-qul-e-may
bahr-e-naasudagii machale to manaaye na mane
jab ko_ii baat banaaye na bane
jab na ko_ii baat chale
jis gha.Dii raat chale
jis gha.Dii maatamii, sun-saan, siyah raat chale
paas raho
mere qaatil, mere dildaar, mere paas raho

Be Near Me

You who demolish me, you whom I love,
be near me. Remain near me when evening,
drunk on the blood of skies,
becomes night, in the other
a sword sheathed in the diamond of stars.
Be near me when night laments or sings,
or when it begins to dance,
its stell-blue anklets ringing with grief.
Be here when longings, long submerged
in the heart’s waters, resurface
and everyone begins to look:
Where is the assasin? In whose sleeve
is hidden the redeeming knife?
And when wine, as it is poured, is the sobbing
of children whom nothing will console–
when nothing holds,
when nothing is:
at that dark hour when night mourns,
be near me, my destroyer, my lover me,
be near me.

Agha Shahid Ali’s translation.
(From The Rebel’s Silhouette)
asif sultan
shreveport, usa
Nov 21, 2009
06:57 PM
Marxism has nothing to do with the likes of Faiz, trapped in a world of stale Middle Eastern thological dogma.

Get a life.
Momeen Rashid
Delhi, India
Nov 22, 2009
12:18 AM
An era passed away when Faiz left this Earth ... an era that would return to Pakistan or India for that reason ... or in the history of Islam in the sub-continent ...
Vijay Agarwal
Northampton, United Kingdom
Nov 22, 2009
12:45 PM
Faiz is one great poet, in the tradition of the Godless lover similar to Ghalib. Some couplets come to mind as follows:

Dil mein ab yoon tere bhoole hue gham aate hain,
Jaise bichade hue ka'abe mein sanam aate hain

The forgotten longings for you so now come to my heart,
As the departed idols (deities)come (back) to the Kaaba.

Aaiye haath uthaye hum bhi,
Hum jinhe rasme dua yaad nahin,
Hum jinhe soze' mohabbat ke siva,
Koi but, Koi khuda yaad nah

Come, let's raise our hands (for prayer) too,
We, who do not remember any rituals of (formal Muslim) prayer.
We, who except for the feeling of love,
do not remember any deity or God.
Muslim for Reform
Nashik, India
Nov 22, 2009
01:22 PM
shaiKh saahab se rasm-o-raah na kii
shukr hai zindagii tabaah na kii

(I) did not enjoin in the rites and ways of Mr. (Muslim) Shaykh,
Thanks that I did not destroy my life

raqs-e-may tez karo, saaz kii lay tez karo
suu-e-maiKhaanaa safiiraan-e-haram aate hai.n

Increase the tempo of the drunken dancing and the instruments,
The ambassadors of the holy place are coming in the direction of the Winehouse.

vaa_iz se rah-o-rasm rahii ri.nd se sohabat
farq in me.n ko_ii itanaa ziyaadaa to nahii.n thaa

Relations remained with the (Muslim) Preacher and shared company with the drunkard,
The difference between them was not too much.
Muslim for Reform
Nashik, India
Nov 23, 2009
09:47 AM
Faiz was shortlisted for Nobel prize for literature, but didn't receive it, probably due to short sightedness of the jury; or the fact that it was height of cold war and he had already received Lenin Peace prize.
asif sultan
shreveport, usa
Nov 23, 2009
01:05 PM
One gem of a couplet of Faiz reads as follows:

Gulon mein rang bharey, ba'ade naubahaar chaley,
Chaley bhi aao ke gulshan ka kaarobaar chale

Let color fill the flowers, winds of new springs blow
Please do come so that the business of the garden moves.

In this couplet, the phrase 'business of the garden' is very creatively and poetically conceived and employed, which was new to be used as such.
Muslim for Reform
Nashik, India
Nov 23, 2009
08:48 PM
Thank you, thank you, followed the link to the juvenilia and now finally I understand the meaning of the ghazal


But it is sung so well that even without understanding it completely, I used to enjoy it very much. Now, it makes perfect sense as well. Thanks again.
Ajit Tendulkar
Seattle, United States
Nov 24, 2009
02:33 AM
Thanks for the translations ... superfluous ...
Faiz will live forever ...
dev raya
Bangalore, India
Nov 24, 2009
03:12 AM
Superfluous? Um, hmm.
Ajit Tendulkar
Seattle, United States
Nov 25, 2009
07:56 PM
No matter how progressive even he wasof the view without Kashmir Pakistan ka map complete nahin hota. I guess there is a limit to which a Pakistani can be moderate and liberal.
Anil Kumar
Toronto, Canada
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