Ahmed Nadeem Qasmi: Mein tou darya houn, samandar mein uttar jaoun ga

Posted on July 11, 2006
Filed Under People, Poetry, Urdu
12 Comments
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Adil Najam

Ahmed Nadeem Qasmi died today.

I learnt of his demise from Sabahat Zakariya’s blog Silsala-e-Mah-o-Saal, which also reminded me of that very apt verse from Qasmi sahib:

KouN kehta hai kay mout aa-ayee tou marr jaouN ga
Mein tou darya houN, samandar meiN uttar jaouN ga

[Who says that I woudl die on the arrival of death
I am a river, I will just merge into the ocean]

According to The News, Ahmed Nadeem Qasmi, 89, was “the last of the literary giants.” He was born as Ahmed Shah in Anga, a place near Khushab in 1916. In 1937 he became editor of Phool: Taleem-e-Niswan, after independence he joined Radio Pakistan in Peshawar, and in 1963 he became the editor of Funoon. He was also a key leader of the taraqi-pasand (progressive) writers movement and of the majlis-e-taraqi-e-adab. Although he was a central figure he progressive movement and although his poetry is a living testament to his commitment, he did come for some criticism for being seen as close to Gen. Zia-ul-Haq during the early years of that Martial Law.

One of his memorable poems was pathar (stone), which can be heard on RealPlayer in his own voice here (the first lines reads: ‘Do not make a sculpture out of sand, my dear artist; wait for just a moment and I was get you the stone you need…’):

ret se but na banaa ai mere achchhe fan_kaar
ek lamhe ko Thahar mai.n tujhe patthar laa duu.N

mai.n tere saamane ambaar lagaa duu.N lekin
kaun se rang kaa patthar tere kaam aayegaa
surKh patthar jise dil kahatii hai bedil duniyaa
yaa vo pattharaa_ii hu_ii aa.Nkh kaa niilaa patthar
jis me.n sadiyo.n ke tahayyur ke pa.De ho.n Dore

kyaa tujhe ruuh ke patthar kii zaruurat hogii
jis pe haq baat bhii patthar kii tarah giratii hai
ik vo patthar hai jise kahate hai.n tahaziib-e-safed
us ke mar_mar me.n siyah Khuun jhalak jaataa hai
ik insaaf kaa patthar bhii to hotaa hai magar
haath me.n teshaa-e-zar ho to vo haath aataa hai

jitane mayaar hai.n is daur ke sab patthar hai.n
sher bhii raqs bhii tasviir-o-ginaa bhii patthar
mere ilhaam teraa zahan-e-rasaa bhii patthar
is zamaane me.n har fan kaa nishaa.N patthar hai
haath patthar hai.n tere merii zubaa.N patthar hai
ret se but na banaa ai mere achchhe fan_kaar

A sampling of his progressive instincts and an apt obituary are to be found in this ghazal (you can listen to it in his voice, on RealPlayer, here):

Andheri raat ko yeh moujza daikhaiN gay humm
Charagh agar na jalla, appna dil jalaiNgay humm

Agar hai mout mein kuch lutf, tou bass itna hai
Kay iss kay baad khuda ka suragh pAaiN gay h
um

We shall demonstate this miracle to the darkend night
when we can not light the lamp, we shall burn our hearts

If there is any pleasure in death, it is but this
after that (death) we shall discover the essence of god

12 responses to “Ahmed Nadeem Qasmi: Mein tou darya houn, samandar mein uttar jaoun ga”

  1. Rafay Kashmiri says:

    @Neel,

    kia kamal ki shaya’ri thi Qasmi marhoom ki,
    aur, khasusan, yeh ghazal to ‘ ghazab ‘ ki hey,
    aik aik shair, misrah, qafia aur radhif mein hamahangi,
    unki ‘khasiat’ thi.
    Unko gaeiy howay aaj 2 saal hogaey, laikin, har shai’r utna
    his ta’azah hay, jitna chaman mein hor roz aik ta’aza phool.

    Qasmi Saheb ki nazr hay:

    Sha’ir jo kehta hay, yaqeenan, wo sunta bhi hay,
    Ham jo suntay hein faqat, sehar mein gom hotay hein
    Rafay Kashmiri

  2. MALIK SHARIQ HASSAN AWAN says:

    AHMED NADEEM QASMI was a great poet of PAKISTAN.He was a pride of SOON VALLEY.

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