Archive for faiz

Mortality

Day 10,030 – Saturday – 22 Safar 1429 – 11 Phalgun 1929 – 01 March 2008

So, for the past couple of weeks, I have been having issues grappling with life, death, mortality, my own life, my mortality. The length of my life. How long I got. How long most people get. How incredibly short seventy years is. Youth. How short youth is. Is my youth over? How much longer will it last? What is the essence of life? How do I know it? How do I get it?

Seemingly, each question, less than eight words, but contemplation material for a lifetime.

The canvas of these questions is so broad that they have been thought of and contemplated and deliberated with such intensity and for so much time that I possibly can not do justice to this topic in a post. But, since it occupies my mind nowadays, I think it is pertinent.

How short life is, and how strongly, as of this moment, I feel that all that life is about is the other humans in my life: family and friends. But, do I loose them? I dont believe in an after life. So, with the last breath of anyone I love, or with my last breath, that bond is broken forever, and all that remains is protons and worms and old clothing that smells like the cologne I used to wear. On the one hand, it pains me to think that the bond is broken and the relationship is over. To me the loss of this treasure of mine is more than my life, the loss of my life will be less of a trajedy than the loss of these relationships. On the other hand, I must cherish each and every moment of my life with them. I must, there is never enough time, and I love them so much. Life is to live.

I have found another reason for being, for feeling alive, for life. The will to explore. Knowledge. Poetry. Literature. Art. Music. Science. Humans. Cities. Countries. I want to explore everything. As much of this immense and complex world that we have. If there is Allah, he has planned this world in a way that none of us would be able to see everything in their lifetime, and hence enjoy each and every bit just as much. Planned for perfection. Maybe that is why life is short, intense and meaningful. Travel gives me a high. Reading poetry gives me a high. On most occasions, my work gives me a high. Life is for living. Too beautiful to live.

The most beautiful things in life are free. The ability to enjoy whatever life may offer. Soldiers in fox holes laugh at jokes. The ability to appreciate beauty. I would consider my life lost if I had not known Faiz. The ability to learn and grow into a greater person. These are free, and we should make as much use of them as possible.

I was slightly shaken from this when my uncle passed away last year. I smsd one of my friends about this, and SAR sent me an sms that brings things into so much perspective, that I consider this email one of my most precious possessions, “Once we perish theres no coming back so dance to the tune of life till the music lasts.”

SAR, I love you man. Have a long and beautiful life. All of you. Have a long (measured by depth, not time) and beautiful life, I can never ask more for any of you.

Ghazal

Monday – 21 Jamadi ul Awwal 1424 – 31 Asadh 1925 – 22 July 2003

the reason for todays post is to share with you all something that i enjoy. something that is capable of giving me orgasmic pleasure. it is poetry and music. since these specific artforms will be new to you. i will give you a background.

i just thought this post should be about a few cultural things from here. such as poetry and music. to start of with pakistan india and bangladesh form a cultural unit. perviously known as india(greek, english), hind(arabic), hindustan(persian, urdu) and bharat(sanskrit, hindi). so the poetic and musical traditions that i will talk about today will be from this region.

one of the many forms of poetry(‘shaairi’ in urdu) is the ghazal. it is one of the most popular. most rhythmic. most beautiful. and most liked forms of poetry in south asia(india+pakistan+bangladesh). it is made up of couplets. which join together to form the ghazal. every couplet has two lines which are about the same subject. different couplets in the ghazal can have different themes making it more independent and deep.

one of the many forms of music(‘mausiqi’ in urdu) is also the ghazal. it is the art of singing the ghazal. the poetic form i just talked about. it is made upon raagas. so it contains a heavy element to south asian classical music. there is a way of singing a ghazal that makes it much much more meaningful and pleasing. since the topics can range from love to life to society to romance to loss to anything whatsoever. it is interesting to see how the ghazal developes with time.

i love reading ghazals and feeling them and contemplating upon them. i love listening to music especially the way the ghazal is sung. i am more of a classical music guy. so i have a form of poetry that is very beautifully woven into music. it is a collection of two beautiful things. poetry and music.

everyone likes certain voices. everyone finds certain individual to be more melodious. everyone had a favourite voice. and usually in 98% of the cases people say that their favourite voice could be better. i mean to say they think it isnt perfect. well my favourite all time singer is mehdi hasan. he is an excellent ghazal singer. his is the best voice that i have ever heard emanating from a throat. also he is very adept in his art. he knows every little thing of what to do with his voice to send shivers down peoples spines. summarizing, he is perfect. i cannot imagine someone better.

so now i have ghazal being sung by mehdi hasan. i cannot tell you how much of a plesure it is. there isnt one ghazal sung by him that will not pull me to the source of the sound. be it my home, a party, a bazaar or an airport. i cannot resist it. i will move towards the sound like a zombie. there is not one ghazal sung by mehdi hasan during whict at one time or another i will not close my eyes just to let all my sensations focus only on that one sound. and be swept away by it. i never listen to him in the car. it is too dangerous.

since i have been rambling on so much i will stop now. in the hope that the love of my life (who also has to like mehdi hasan VERY much) will read this post. and stop. and realize that he has also found the love of his life. and we will live happily ever after. listening to mehdi hasan.

as i type all this mehdi hasan’s ghazals play in the background. this one is one of my favourites and one of his best works. since i cannot tell you how it sounds like i will only type the ghazal here. the poet was. faiz ahmed faiz. a wonderful wonderful poet. who also has the capability of pushing people into orgasmic pleasure just by the power of his words.

this poet of this ghazal is faiz ahmed faiz, it was sung by mehdi hasan. any south asian with an interest in music and poetry will tell you that ‘this combination must be excellent’. period. this ghazal will instantly be recognized by the people i was talking about earlier. let me write the ghazal for you along with a few of the stresses during mehdi hasans musical version.

gulON meiN rang bharE, bAd-e-naubahAr chalE

chalE bhi Aao ke gulshan ka kAr-o-bAr chalE

qafas udAs hai yArON sabA se kuchh to kahO

kahiN to bahr-e-KHudA Aj zikr-e-yAr chalE

jo ham pe guzri so guzrI magar shab-e-hijrAN

hamAre ashk terI ANkh but saNwAr chalE

huA jo teer-e-nazar neem_kash to kyA hAsil?

mazA to jab hai ke seene ke aar-paar chalE

maqAm ‘Faiz’ koI rAh mEIN jachA hi nahIN

jo kU-e-yAr se niklE to sU-e-dAr chalE

now the translation. since i am translating this it is very very very flawed. also it is just a prosaic translation.

spreading the colour in the flowers the early spring breezes blow

do come here now so the business of the garden should start

the prison cell is very lonely friends say something to the wind

would not that somewhere o lord the topic of my beloved comes up

what has befallen us is past but o night of lonely seperation

my tears have made better your eyes and your own self

what is the use when the arrows from your eyes are too weak?

pleasure will be when it will cross my heart and chest

no place faiz did i like in the way

when i left the street of the beloved i went straight towards death

i hate myself horribly for mutiliating this beautifuil ghazal by this ghastly translation. sorry to everyone who i hurt extermely by this display or boorish barbarism. it is so so so so so much better without the translation.

well i will not obsess about it. i will leave now. let god be kind to you.