Chronicles Of Poetry

November 3, 2010 at 9:15 PMNov (Friends, Literature, Media, Musings, Poetry, Slice Of Life)

Amrita got me the complete collection of Ahmed Faraaz poetry. Heart, mind and soul is intoxicated as of now. The book has made me revisit Salma Agha singing his ghazal ‘Zindagi Yun Thi Ke Jeeney Ka Bahaana Tu Tha.”

The most moving moment in this video clip of Salma Agha singing Ahmed Faraaz, for me, is the poet being moved to tears while listening to his own words. The song makes him restless and without noticing the ‘no smoking’ board in the studio he lights the cigarette and smokes. Every time i watch this video i wonder what brought tears in the eyes of Faraaz saheb. Was it the voice of Salma Agha or was it his own words?

We all have heard of Pandith Nehru crying while listening to Lata Mangeshkar singing ‘Aye Mere Watan Ke Logon’.  But in the Salma Agha singing Faraaz video we see a song making its own creator cry. The poet sheds tears listening to his own creation. Poetry moved not just the listener but also its writer!!!

The story of Nehru being moved to tears while listening to the song ‘Aye Mere Watan Ke Logon’ is one of those repeated stories for the construction of the idea of a nation.

Iqbal, the one who wrote ‘Saarey Jahaan Se Achcha’, wrote a lengthy poem titled ‘Shikwaah’ which is Iqbal’s dialogue with Allah. While introducing this poem to us, the translator of the poem Kushwanth Singh draws our attention to an interesting fact. He says, “Shikwaah mey be regarded as the first manifesto of the two-nation theory which was later elaborated in detail by Chaudhari Rahmat Ali and accepted as the basis of the foundation of a separate state for the Muslims (Pakistan) by Mohammad Ali Jinnah.” In 1904 Iqbal had written ‘Saarey Jahaan Se Achcha’ and in 1909 he wrote ‘Shikwaah’. The latter one, as said by Kushwanth Singh, became the seed for the two-nation theory the earlier one still remains to be one of the tool for creating the idea of nation in India.

Long ago a friend of mine was telling me that Pandith Nehru had written in his diary the lines of Frost, “I have miles to go before i sleep,” the night he died. Listening to this another friend made a remark, “Oh my God! The poem killed him???” and we all had laughed.

Recently i remembered this incident while reading the obituary of Kee. Ram. Nagaraj written by my teacher H.S. Shivaprakash. Few hours before his death Kee. Ram. was  making a “passionate speech” about his beloved poet Da. Ra. Bendre. It is said that Kee. Ram., that evening during his speech, declared “poetry is powerful therapy thanks to which he had regained his strength to make the speech, his poor health notwithstanding.” Mentioning this H.S.S. wrote, in Prajavani, “It appeared like even death dared not to touch Kee.Ram. with its icy-hands when he was speaking of poetry. He proved that though poetry cannot defeat death, it could at least postpone death by a few hours.”

16 October 2010

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