I am present
in the past
There is one Urdu verse which is quite renowned because of its theme, and this verse goes like:
تندئ بادِ مخالف سے نہ گھبرا اے عقاب
یہ تو چلتی ہے تجھے اونچا اڑانے کے لیے
Tundi-e baad-e-mukhalif se na ghabra ay uqaab
Ye tou chalti hai tujhay ooncha urranay ke liye”
Don’t fear the intensity of opposing-wind*, O’ Eagle
It only blows to help you fly even higher.
[*headwind: A wind blowing from directly in front, opposing forward motion]
Due to such fine theme and the presence of the metaphor “Uqaab“, the Eagle, many people confuse this verse and relate it to Dr. Allama Muhammad Iqbal.
Although readers familiar with Iqbal’s work already know this fact, but this is shared just to clarify the confusions in general circle.
Photo: Dr. Munir Ahmed Slatch
Courtesy: Aqeel Abbas Jafri
On this 133rd birth anniversary of Dr. Muhammad Iqbal, I’m sharing some of my hand-painted calligraphic works I did few years back. Urdu verses by Iqbal are painted in different decorative writing styles. I have used various mediums for creating these artworks.
[Click images to view larger versions]
“A friend of Joseph [Prophet Yusuf] returned from a far journey.
Joseph asked, “What present have you brought me?”
The friend replied, “What is there you do not possess? What could you need?
Since no one exists more handsome than you, I have brought a mirror
so that every moment you may gaze in it upon your own face.”
– Mevlana Jalaluddin Rumi
Taken from the book: “Discourses of Rumi“, Or, “Fihi ma Fihi” (Arabic: فیه مافیه)
By Doug Marman, Based on the original translation by A. J. Arberry
What is there that God does not possess? What does He need?
Therefore, bring before God a heart, crystal clear, so that He may see His own perfection. “God looks not at your form, nor at your deeds, but at your heart.”
Similar idea is also mentioned by Rumi at another place:
You’ve no idea how hard I’ve looked for a gift to bring You.
Nothing seemed right.
What’s the point of bringing gold to the gold mine,
Or water to the Ocean.
Everything I came up with was like taking spices to the Orient.
It’s no good giving my heart and my soul
Because you already have these.
So- I’ve brought you a mirror.
Look at yourself and remember me.
– Jalaluddin Rumi
A very famous poem [Nazm] titled “Ambri” [Punjabi: امبڑی. English: Mother] written by a very renowned Poet from Pakistan Anwar Masood. Although, he is widely known because of his humorous poetry, but he has also written some very serious pieces. This poem is probably among one of the most serious works by him.
I’m sharing a video of Anwar Masood reciting his famous poem “Ambri“, with a short description in the start, taken from a TV program. I have attempted to translate this entire video, including the poem in English for those who don’t understand Punjabi. Please note that this translation is not literal.
[Anwar Masood speaks]
“You have said something really nice in the start about this topic [i.e. Mother], and it surely is very hard to talk about it.
It took Ten Years to write me this poem. I was in Pindi Gheb that time, and one night this poem asked me to write it. And then I attempted to pen it down. I realized it afterwards that this poem was sort of revealed entirely upon me in this complete form and composition.
This poem is a true story, and the names of two student in this poem are real as well.
One boy is named Bashir, while his other class-fellow is Akram.
Bashir was late in the class, and the schoolmaster, called “Munshi“, asked for the explanation why he was late.
Here, I’m telling it in front of all the audience that I was the schoolmaster in this poem.”
[Schoolmaster asks Bashir]
You are so late today, Bashir!
Even when your village is quite nearby.
You’ll surely get some severe beating as punishment,
As you have almost missed two periods.
[The student, Bashir, replies]
Dear Sir, please listen to my reason first.
Akram has really did the worst today.
He beats his mother, and beats real harsh
And this rascal has crossed the limits today.
He thrashed her till that butter-churning-staff broke.
But when some people gathered from nearby
He picked up his books and ran to school.
Sir, his mother then came to our home
Her face was full of bruises, her hands were swollen much
Her eyes were wet with tears, and lips were bleeding too.
She asked me “O sweet Bashir!
Please do me a favor today, dear!
Take this lunch to my son Akram
As he was cross with me and went without it”
She has cooked these special “Paratha” [bread] for him
And egg-pudding prepared with such care.
She has carefully wrapped his lunch
And handed over to me.
She was repeatedly saying this to me
“Please hurry up dear
Please don’t be late.
My son must be fainting with hunger.
That poor soul went to school without eating”
She handed me the lunch
And I headed towards this school.
This Akram has really did the worst today…
‘Come to the edge’, he said.
They said, ‘We are afraid’.
‘Come to the edge’, he said.
He pushed them….
And they flew.
- Guillaume Apollinaire
This is one of the finest lines I’ve ever read. I really like the theme behind this. Sometimes. We are not aware of the things we can do until someone make us do that.
Yes, I have Wings… I have Energy… I just Need a Push!!!