I cannot stop writing

I often get a question:  “How do you write?”  It has a wide range of connotations:  “How do you get such thoughts?”; “How can you find time to write?”; or just “Why the hell you stress yourself after a workday? Don’t you get tired ?”  The answer is simple for me.  I write because I write; I cannot do otherwise.  I cannot live without writing.  It is not about writing a blog or writing online.  Writing online is kind of a perversion, because I cannot write on-paper for many reasons.  Writing online has its benefits too; I get a quick response and I can refine my thoughts if there is any odd thinking.

I never knew myself for years that I can write.  I was a reader; reading for my own pleasure.  I never understood at what time my reading changed from “just reading” to “a reading experience.”  At some point in my reading career, without even knowing myself, I started interpreting things in my own way.  And I started to realize whatever I had read until then was just a reading practice for the years to come.  Earlier, I used to devour hundreds of pages in a day, but it was just a preparation.  Till then, I hated poetry.  I had never brought a poetry book from library.  I never understood why people write poems.  It was all because I had never read good poetry, or I had not learnt interpreting things till then.  All this happened around my early twenties.  From around 19 through 21, I was turning from a “reading reader” to a “writing reader.”

For me, writing is interpreting things.  If reading is an attempt to understand the world better, interpretation and writing is a way to understand ourselves.  It was around this critical time, I was haunted with this question “What am I?” and I started writing.  Practically, I never asked myself this question and never tried to answer it, I started gaining insights in myself with my interpretations and my point-of-view towards things.

Around the same time, I found Urdu poetry.  I would have little hesitation to say Urdu poetry is the crowned queen of all Indian poetry.  Urdu poetry helped me a great to learn the skill of appreciating words.  I was my kind of poetry, that talks in subtleties, that speaks through symbols and icons, that speaks a little and leaves a lot to the reader.  Iqbal was one of my early favorites.  Look at one of his couplet:

ढूंढता फिरता हूं ऐ इक़बाल अपने आप को,
आप ही गोया मुसाफिर आप ही मंज़िल हूं मैं

I keep wandering, oh Iqbal, in search of my “self”
As if I am the traveler and I am the destination too!

Then came Sahir,

जो तार से निकली वो धून सब ने सुनी है
जो साज़ पे गुज़री है वो किस दिल को पता है

Everyone has listened to the tune that comes out of the strings,
Who knows what the instrument goes through!

And how can I forget Ghalib, the king of Urdu poetry.  The introduction line of my last blog read:

ये मसाईल ए तसव्वूफ़, ये तेरा बयान ग़ालिब
ह्म तुझे वली समझते जो न बादाख्वार होता

These problems of mysticism, these discourses of yours Ghalib,
We would have considered you a saint, if you were not a drunkard!

The above couplets are just for introduction.  I can’t tell you exactly how Ghalib had made me restless, and at the same time, how he had become solace to myself.  I can’t stop myself from quoting one more from Ghalib:

दोनों जहान दे के वो समझे ये खुश रहा,
यां शर्म आ पडी के अब तकरार क्या करें

Having given all her world, she thinks he must be happy now,
Here I’m in a shame now what shall I complain about?

I find it very difficult to stop when I start talking about Urdu poetry.  It has became a kind of passion for me.  We can keep this topic reserved for some time later.

I started building my own self over these things.  And oftentimes, a single couplet grew over me like a whole concept, a series of interpretations, things unwinding one after one.  It built up so much in me, I was left like a pregnant cloud and the only thing I could do was to shower.  This led to one more search, on whom?  I was left once again with “I wander in search of my self, O Iqbal.”  It is very difficult to find one who “understands” your passions and you.  I pass through dreams, lives, failures .  Again a new search, I cannot stop showering.

I cannot stop writing.

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18 Responses to “I cannot stop writing”

  1. mayur hulsar Says:

    haa haa.. there you go dear friend… looks like the dirt in pipe is gone and water has started freely flowing now!

    very nice post.. keep ’em coming!

    • Ganesh Dhamodkar Says:

      Thanks Mayur! I really needed these words from you. I know something had clogged the flow, and you (mean overall regular readers) were not quite happy with what I was writing, but as you know, to write good you need to build it in yourself before you sit on your computer. Incidentally, one other reader asked me “why do you write?” and that made the flow get going! Thank you for your patience in the meanwhile!

  2. mukesh Says:

    ok…sirji..dont stop!!!i read regularly…k..

  3. Blood-Ink-Diary Says:

    Wonderful post! Thank you for visiting my blog – through which I have now discovered yours! You have some lovely work here. Keep in touch. Cheers

  4. Suja Says:

    Good post, keep writing 🙂

  5. neeru sahgal Says:

    keeep writing and exploring your hidden talent or may I say passion.

  6. pradnya Says:

    nice post ganesh.love to read about urdu poetry and sahir ludhianvi is my favourite too.i loved all his songs from ‘hum dono’.especially,
    Kabhi Khud Pe Kabhi Hallat Pe Rona Aaya,main zindagi ka saath nibhata chala gaya,sukh aur dukh ke raastein bane hai sabke waste jo gam se haar jaoge to kis tarah nibhaoge.. do lemme know if u like them too. 🙂

    • Ganesh Dhamodkar Says:

      Yeah, I know the first two songs. “Kabhi khud pe kabhi haalat pe rona aaya” is kind of a favorite. “Main zindgi ka saath nibhata chala gaya” is also a good one, somewhat lighter. I live every shair from this song, “gham aur khushi mein farq na mahsoos ho jaha, main dil ko uss makaam pe laata chala gaya” is excellent, and “barbaadiyo.n ka jashn” etc.

      I don’t know the third song, however. I will try finding it on your recommendation 🙂

  7. WordsFallFromMyEyes Says:

    I love seeing men writing, poetry, songs – sorry, not that men aren’t made to as much as women, but I rejoice to see men doing that 🙂 I relate to “can’t stop writing!!”

  8. Neha Says:

    Hi 🙂 Liked your post because I too discovered very recently that I am a writer and could’ve never been anything else! Thank you for visiting my blog 🙂 I see we share the love for the golden era of films and its music.

    Keep writing!

  9. Sumit Says:

    Are bapre re!! Can’t believe people have patience of reading long blogs. But anyway happy writing to you.

  10. Images from a Street Festival… « Mayur Hulsar Photography Says:

    […] cause of not able to post this was because lately I m not able to write what I m willing to. Like Ganesh one of my blogger friend who recently was not able to write anything straight, I too was struggling […]

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