The allure of poetry with the example of a Farsi ghazal II

Returning to my account about the allure of poetry (on those few imbued with culture and senstivity that is). As I write this today (Tuesday, the 11th of May of the Year of Glorious Uncertainty 2010), the urge to complete this becomes overpowering for two reasons – the first that is a Wednesday again tomorrow and secondly, the day today was a total washout…. one of those on which nothing goes right.

However, let me continue with my narrative. I had told you how overcome by a Farsi ghazal by Aalim Lakhnavi – which I first did not pay much attention but then the radif kept on playing in my mind till I determined to acquire the kulliyat as soon as possible.

I had reached the point where I had left for my lunch appointment, slightly late due to the clock at the establishment I was completing the preparatory work being slightly out of step with the real time. There was a slight sense of trepidation as I made my way to the venue and the uncertainty increased marginally as I waited for my friend. However, after a few agonising moments, all the tension dissipated as I espied him making his way jauntily towards me.

Well, I can’t speak much about the substance of our conversation but what I can dwell on – and at length – is the food. The macaroni and sausage salad, in that enticing white sauce, was present though I was a little disappointed not to find the tuna fish salad this time. However, the mutton strips salad was a most excellent substitute and I shamelessly gorged on it.

Well the repast soon ended – as all good things eventually do – and then I faced the dilemma of deciding what my next step should be. Ideally, it should have been to go and acquire Aalim’s kulliyat but the food had temporarilysubdued my ardour. I instead decided to go to an internet cafe to deal with some important pending work but not spend more than an hour and a half at the most – It was roughly 1600 hours at the time. However, with one thing or the other, it was well after 1800 hours that I could rouse myself.

And on the way to old Delhi, I kept dilly-dallying – in my mind – whether to make the effort or not, wondering I would make it in time or not. But then I gritted my teeth and decided to make the attempt, in any case, even after the massive crowds in the metro station shook my resolve a bit. I managed to board the third train, reach my stop in a matter of minutes and move in double-quick time through that maddeningly-crowded street while dragging anxiously on a cigarette, and making judicious use of elbows and a stare to force my way and Wonders of Wonders, I made it in time. 

The usual people – Rakesh ji of Ahluwalia Books and so – were there as I huffed and puffed my way in and after the due courtesies, went in straight and picked the book… there was no time to look for more. Khusro sahab sportingly gave me a good discount on it and even tea was arranged before he apologised for the short time and I did too for coming late….. and then we parted as the shutters came down.

Well there was a small more matter as I saw a couple of interesting books in that small shop ahead and then went in to Farid to pick up them up at the discounted rate but I don’t think it fits in here.

What I will end with is the lyric itself that inspired this heroic venture….. and I cannot do anything if you…. but lets not end on a polemical note. The ghazal is more fitting for the purpose of the ending. Enjoy

Aan behtar ast anja ke behtar nami konem
Armaan dil supurd muqaddar nami konem

Sau gana ishq khvesh ke behtar nami konem
Dil ra agar haawale dilbar nami konem

Da az khamosh bash ke youm-e-saaed mast
Imroz zikr badah-e-saaghir nami konem

Talkh ast sabr lek ba khosh dahd madam
Az aah vafa le hashr ba mashahr nami konem

Ya beem lutf az khalish khar hai dasht
Barsang astaan to bastar nami konem

Tabeer khwaab maane shud az hilal-e-Eid
Khud ra agar haawale nami konem

Khvaheem az to zulm be bend kise ba khalq
Qaatil laqab dahm-o-sitamgar nami konem

Aya naseeb ishq na shaad husn dar azal
Bashnau ke az to khwaish degar nami konem

Mara bud che karz abnae rozgaar
Ma jaz Khuda sataish-e-degar nami konem

Mara che kar az haram-o-dair ae habeeb
Ma aashqeem-o-kar pambar nami konem

Bar dasti heech masho mutmain ba dehr
Aalim shikayat dil-e-maztar nami konem

Tamam shud!…….


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