Posts Tagged ‘poetry’

Ek dost bahut duur se aata hai..

October 4, 2014

Finally, I did go Bhopal yesterday.  The feeling that I could actually meet dear Shams bhai proved stronger than my laziness.

I reached Bhopal station and he came to pick me.  We went his home. We went out.  Visited places – the lakes, Taj-ul-Masajid (Crown of the Mosques), the shaheen (Eagle) of Iqbal, curfew waali maata, various historical structures in Bhopal, many of them in ruins, few maintained.  We rode on his bike on roads.  We had samovar tea.  We had lunch.

Me with Mr. Shams Adanan Alavi.

And we talked, talked, and talked –

of the city, it’s people, it’s structures and monuments, it’s literature, it’s language.  We talked of Maharashtra, it’s politics, the social movements of Maharashtra, and the literary movements thereof.  We talked of Mahatma Phule.  We talked of Sikandar Jahaan Begum.  We talked of Annabhau Sathe and Dr. Ambedkar.  We talked about the Dhamma Chakra Pravartan festival at Deekahsbhoomi, Nagpur.  We talked of Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh.  We talked of Maratha Seva Sangh.  We talked of Marathi ghazal.  We talked of poetic meter.  And then it was a time to finish the visit and come back!

Later I felt like I talked too much and made him listen all the time.  I had gone there to listen to him.  I noted a few times when he was talking about himself, I myself started talking.  Perhaps, I was so excited..  Perhaps some other time..

I came back.  Today, he posted a poem on his Facebook.. A poem dedicated to me.. “a friend comes from far away..” ek dost bahut door se aata hai.. Never believed someone would dedicate me a poem..

And I am overwhelmed.. almost in tears to read it!

Ek dost bahut duur se aata hai

Dedicated to Ganesh Dhamodkar
نذر گنیش دھاموڈکر

Ek dost bohat door se aata hai
arz-e-baraar٭ ki Khusbhu lata hai
kehta hai Marathi aur Urdu mein Ghazal voh
aur mujhe Chakbast** ka she’r sunaata hai
ab tak rabt tha us se
magar mulaqaat na thi
hoti thee.n baate.n magar shayad milne ki saa’at na thii
voh naujawaa.n jahaaN bhi jaata hai
saath Gahlib ka barqi diivaa.n le jaata hai
Ek dost bohat door se aata hai…
dhyaan se dekhe usne shahr ke dar-o-faseel
taal ke aks meiN nazar aayii use ‘Ambazari jheel’
hai kam-sukhan magar kamaal kar jaata hai
yakdam Taj Bhopali ke baare me.n savaal kar jaata hai
Ek dost bohat door se aata hai…
Uski aankho.n meN kuchh khwaab haiN
khamushi ke pas-e-pusht kaii inqelab haiN
apne kuchh Khwaab mujhe sunaata hai
ham se jab misra mauzoo.n nahi hota
voh jumla bhi ‘beher’ mein keh jaata hai
Ek dost bohat door se aata hai…

                                                                        Shams ‘Adnan’ Alavi

[Arz-e-Baraar=Land of Berar in today’s Maharashtra
٭٭Renowned Urdu poet late Brij Narayan Chakbast
barqi divaa.n=Diwan in file in computer/pen drive/pdf]

Ghalib – My Friend, Philosopher, Poet

June 13, 2014

Ghalib is “the” poet of the subcontinent. His ash’aar (couplets) have provided solace to millions. Thousands have interpreted him in their own way. Indeed, Ghalib’s shair (couplet) present themselves differently in different situations.

Ghalib has been a dear companion to me over years. His deewan has been a bible to me. There hasn’t been a day, and I mean it literally, when I’ve not thought of some of his shair. Ghalib accompanies me in my happiness and more so in my sadness.

I’m thinking of writing on Ghalib’s poetry – if my time permits and gives enough leisure to me. Nothing is fixed yet. Perhaps, I will, or I will not. I’ve been constantly prodded by one senior poet friend of mine to write about Ghalib. Though I’ve shown my interest, I haven’t committed anything yet.

I shall finish this post with one of Ghalib’s shair:

taaliif e nuskha haaye wafaa kar rahaa tha main
majmoo.n e khayaal abhi fard fard tha

Compiling the recipe of love I was; the ingredients of my thoughts were still in fragments and pieces.

Short letter to X

December 17, 2013

Dear X,

One shair of Ghalib for me, rather just one line of it. “ Aashiqui sabr_talab aur tamanna betaab..” Love asks for patience, and desires are uncontrollable. What shall I do of my heart until it ends all?

thinking of you,

Ganesh

Again and Again : Rainer Maria Rilke

October 29, 2013

Again and again, however we know the landscape of love
and the little churchyard there, with its sorrowing names,
and the frighteningly silent abyss into which the others fall:

Again and again the two of us walk out together
under the ancient trees,
lie down again and again
among the flowers,
face to face with the sky.

You and I, despite knowing the churchyard and the sorrowful names there, fall in love again and again.

I cannot stop writing

March 1, 2012

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.”

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Of a poem and a dream…

November 12, 2011

Another Saturday. Life passes week by week. Ideas come and go. Days pass. Saturdays, Sundays, and then Mondays. What’s the thing that’s missing?

Hmm, my mp3 player is too intuitive. I wrote what’s the thing that’s missing and it started playing Enge enathu kavithai. Where is my poem–one that I had written in dream?

Bless me O God!

November 10, 2011

Morning!  I started the PC and was about to start work.  I usually keep humming all the time, may be it at home, at work, while riding a bike, or while doing nothing (no one has ever enlightened me on how to do nothing).  And I started humming an abhanga by Tukaram:  हेची दान देगा देवा तुझा विसर न व्हावा, विसर न व्हावा तुझा विसर न व्हावा!!  “Bless me O God; I shall never forgot thou, never, never ever!”  How couldn’t I love these words, how couldn’t I!! Oh God, bless me, I shall never forget thou, never ever!

I knew a similar couplet by Bashir BadrWo bada rahim o karim hai mujhe ye sifat bhi ata karein, tujhe bhulne ke duaa karoon to meri duaa mein asar na ho.”  He is really a kind one, He should grant me a wish–if I ever wish to forget you, I wish must never be granted.  And I loved these lines too, but this time Tukaram took my heart away!

In case of Bashir Badr, he wishes he should never forget his beloved one.  And Tukaram?  For him, the God is his beloved, and he is asking the God never to let him forget Him.

I was humming it all over the day, it was constantly going in my head while all the work was going:  हेची दान देगा देवा तुझा विसर न व्हावा, विसर न  व्हावा तुझा विसर न व्हावा!!

For a moment I thought did Tukaram mean that God should always keep us unhappy that we must not forget him?  Nay, it cannot be such.  Tukaram didn’t mean it that way.  May be it was the case with Bashir Badr, certainly not with Tukaram!

Be with me! Never let me go! Hold me to your heart!! And how can I forget you?  Isn’t it what Tukaram means?  Never let me go!

Tukaram made my day today!!

Notes:
Tukaram (1608-1650) was a Marathi seer poet and is considered the zenith of the Warkari tradition, which sought salvation for all irrespective of caste and creed.  Tukaram wrote poetry in the form of abhangas (literally something that cannot be broken).  Tukaram is considered as one of the best poets the language has ever produced.  Tukaram’s abhangas are still played in the households of Maharashtra.

Bashir Badr is a contemporary Urdu poet, one of my favorite.

Day 1: Post a Day October 2011 — A thirty-day challenge

October 1, 2011

So, here am I with the first post of my 30-day challenge for the month of October 2011.  The idea of posting everyday on a blog is really fascinating and it will be more so with continued support and motivation from all of you.

There are certainly some reservations.  Can it really be creative?  Won’t it just be writing for the sake of writing?  Won’t it be writing because I have the challenge to complete?  Yes, it will be, but writing something is better than not writing at all.  And I know, whatever I will write, I would always be kind of creative in some way or other.

Creativity is “to create”.  He who creates is a creative and not the one who just thinks.  Having some feelings and putting them down on the paper (or on screen) are two really different things.  One cannot be called creative unless he transforms his thinking in the form of creation.

I think I won’t fall short of ideas for at least this 30-day challenge.  I have a lot to tell you.  If I just wait for the form, the form would never come and whatever I am thinking will fade out.  So, before it fades out, I want to put in out in whatever form it takes.

Once a Prashant Vaidya (a Marathi ghazal writer from Kalyan) told me, “Ganesh, we won’t become a poet by just writing good poems for say three months or three years.  To be called a poet, you must give out good poetry for some 30 years. ”  Soon after that, I almost stopped writing poems.  My short poetic career did not even last for three years.  After a keen reading of classics, I had made my taste so special and had raised my bars so high that I could never reach them, and I never wrote again.  And then a lot of things happened and eventually the ideas stopped to occur to me.  Thus, I became a no-poet.

So now, without waiting for ideas or form, I am going to start writing.  And I know, as I will move ahead, I will get my form back.  I know what my form is; I will rediscover it.  I don’t mean that I will start writing poetry again, or stories or novel or some sort of book, but certainly I will start loving writing as it used to do.

So, this is for today, for the first of October 2011; and a whole month of excitement ahead.

P.S.  And I will have to learn to stop too, otherwise I will write a long, long posts for the first few days and will stop writing altogether after that.  So, stop, stop, stop… Enough for today.

A note from Glimpses of Bengal by Rabindranath Tagore

September 29, 2011

Shazadpur 10th July 1893

All I have to say about the discussion that is going on over “silent poets” is that, though the strength of feeling may be the same in those who are silent as in those who are vocal, that has nothing to do with poetry. Poetry is not a matter of feeling, it is the creation of form.

Ideas take shape by some hidden, subtle skill at work within the poet. This creative power is the origin of poetry. Perceptions, feelings, or language, are only raw material. One may be gifted with feeling, a second with language, a third with both; but he who has as well a creative genius, alone is a poet.

Once I used to be a poet! (Another junk from my Outlook draft folder!)

August 31, 2011

They say once I used to be a poet. I have a diary full of poems I had written in my hostel days. Some of my poems were published in local newspapers, and one of them had gotten a wide critical acclaim. I still occasionally get messages, are you the same Ganesh Dhamodkar, the poet of that ghazal? I hesitantly say, yes, I am the same one, but it was a thing of past; I don’t write anymore! And practically, it was one of the very last poems of mine. My short poetic career ended just in less than a couple of years.

Why did I stop writing, in particular writing poems?