Nasir Kazmi was a poet par excellence. His appeal was his extremely romantic and poetic expression, using simple words yet such a sophisticated composition and the finesse of expression. He was influenced by Mir Taqi Mir.
Pursan na tha koi tau yeh ruswayyian na theen
zahir kisi pe haale pareeshan na tha kabhi.
(Only your asking as to my well being has made my sorrows known to everyone
Otherwise I was alone in my misery.)
In his foreword in Barge Ne he says that in the days of yore the poetic expression was not an indiginity. The poet sang his songs in villages, valleys and towns and described the values and stories of love,bravery.travel, chivalry and entertained the people.People loved the poet as an entertainer and performer.He sang their desires and their aspirations in his songs.He was known as a Bhat, Creator and an inventor.They linked him to divinity.Then the rulers also wanted to rule the heart of the masses and they desired that praises be written in their favor and in their honor. The Bhat changed to Bhakti and the emperor became sure of the manipulation of the poet to say whatever he wanted.
The universality of poetic expression was lost and the poet became labelled with a place, a kingdom and he developed a need for artificial appreciation and patronage.
Writes he of the modern poet that in modern times the poetic expression is faced with a dilemma. The poetry is not really understood by the audience. The poet wants to express like a minstrel-poet of yore, spontaneity,divine connection, excellence in expression and composition yet placidity and profoundness to be a character of his verse.
Says he about poetic popularity that to find the reader or audience is not in the hands o f the poet.If the voice is strong ,it reaches far and wide.It also is important that it also reflects the voice of the masses.This is very important.If the lament is not the reflection of the heart of the masses it merely becomes a scream.
These words of Nasir Kazmi express and describe his own poetic expression. He is undoubtedly one of the greatest and most popular poets of modern time in the subcontinent of the Urdu language.
Nasir Kazmi wrote with great spontaneity, total abandon, excellence in composition and an expression that reflected the desires, feelings and the trials and tribulations of a person or a people.
His intensity of passion and the need to get away from intense love is expressed in this ghazal:
Hoti hai tere naam se wehshat kabhi kabhi
Barham hui hai yun bhi tabiyat kabhi kabhi
Ai dil kise naseeb yeh tufiq-e iztiraab
milti hai zindagi mein yeh raahat kabhi kabhi
Tere karam se ai alam-e husn aafreen
Dil ban gaya hai dost ki khilwat kabhi kabhi
Joshe junoon mein dard ki tughyaaniyon ke saath
Ashkon mein dhal gayee tere surat kabhi kabhi
Tere qareeb reh ke bhi dil mutmaen na tha
Guzri hai mujh pe yeh bhi qayamat kabhi kabhi
Kuch apna hosh tha na tumhara khayal tha
Yun bhi guzar gaye shabe furqat kabhi kabhi
Aye dost hum ne tarke muhabbat ke bawajood
Mehsus ki hai teri zaroorat kabhi kabhi
(The distress of your name sometimes causes my heart's ailment.
How my heart turns in agony is a sweet forsaken joy that few are bestowed with.
Ah, sweet sorrow
you have made my lover's company a possibility sometimes.
Alas this madness, this passion
Has made the tempestuous sorrows
My beloved's face shielded in tears
Even your sweet closeness could not provide
This unruly heart a comfort , sometimes.
Some nights of love have passed in distress
Neither was I thinking clear nor was I in remorse
Alas I thought I was finished with you
But that was a thought in vain.
Nasir Kazmi had a style of sweet abandonment in love. His expression of despair and longing in love is explicitly expressed in this ghazal:
Girifta dil hain buhat aaj tere diwane
Khuda kare koi tere siwa na pehchane
Mitee mitee se umeedain thake thake se khayal
Bujhe bujhe se nigahon mein gham ke afsane
Hazaar shuker ke ham ne zaban se kuch na kaha
Yeh aur baat ke poocha na ahle duniya ne
Baqadre tashna labi purseshe wafa na hui
Chalak ke reh gaye teri nazar ke paimaane
Khayal aagaya maayus rahguzaaron ka
Palat ke aagaye manzil se tere diwane
Kahan hai tou ke tere intezaar mein ai dost
Tamam raat sulagte hain dil ke weerane
Umeed -e pursishe gham kis se kijeeye Nasir
Jo apne dil pe guzartee hai koi kiya jaane.
He laments his beloved's insensitivity to his own intense passion in this beautiful ghazal:
Woh dil nawaz hai laikin nazar shanas nahi
Mera ilaaj mere charagar ke paas nahi
Tarap rahe hain zaban par kai sawal magar
Mere liye koi shayane iltimas nahin
Tere jaloo mein bhi dil kaanp kaanp uthta hai
Mere mizaaj ko aasudgi bhi raas nahin
Kabhi kabhi jo tere qurb mein guzare the
Ab un dinon ka tassawur bhi mere paas nahin
Guzar rahe hain ajab marhalon se deeda -o dil
Sahar ki aas to hai zindagi ki aas nahi
Mujhe yeh dar hai teri aarzoo na mit jaye
Buhat dinon se tabiyat mere udaas nahin.
(Alas my beautiful beloved is only enchanting in her ways
She knows not what my restless heart wants.
My heart is filled with a lava of questions
None makes it to expression lest she knows my sorrows.
Your nearness is but a test on this restless soul of mine.
Aah, I am trying to forget in vain
The days I spent in my beloved's company.
Alas my heart's torment is great
I have hope of dawn but not of life.
I do dread forgetting you
My sadness has left me quiet.)
His beautiful use of metaphors and words to express his vast feelings of love is very grandly expressed in this beautiful ghazal:
Tere khayal se lo de uthee hai tanhaai
Shabe firaaq hai ya teri jalwa aaraye
Tu kis khayal mein hai manzilon ke shidaayi
Unhein bhi dekh jinhein raaste mein neend aayee
Pukaar ai jarse karavane subhe tarab
Bhatak rahe hain andheron mein tere saudaayi
Theher gaye hain sare raah khaak urdhane ko
Musaafiron ko na cherdh ai hawa -e sehrayi
Rahe hayat mein kuch marhale tou dekh liye
Yeh aur baat teri aarzo na raas ayi
Yeh saaniha bhi muhabbat mein barha guzra
Keh usne haal bhi poocha to aankh bhar aayi
Dile fasurda mein phir dharkanon ka shor utha
Yeh bethe bethe mujhe kin dinon ki yaad ayi
Mein sote sote kayee baar chonk chonk para
Tamaam raat tere pehluon se aanch aayi
Jahan bhi tha koi fitna tarap ke jaag utha
Tamam hosh thi masti mein teri angrdai
Khuli jo aankh tou kuch aur hi sama dekha
Woh log the na woh jalwe na shehre raanayi
Woh taab e dard woh saudae intezar kahan
Unhee ke saath gaye taqate shakaibai
Phir uski yad mein dil beqarar hai Nasir
Bichar ke jis se hui shehr shehr ruswayi
The singability,melodiousness, profound expressiveness in small verse ,of which he is a king, is expressed in this beautiful ghazal:
Dil dharakne ka sabab yaad aya
Woh teri yaad thi ab yaad aya
Aaj mushkil tha sambhalna ai dost
Tou museebat mein ajab yaad aya
Din guzara tha bari mushkil se
Phir tera waada-e shab yaad aya
Tera bhoola huwa paimaane wafa
Mar rahen ge agar ab yaad aya
Phir kayee log nazar se guzre
Phir koi shehere tarab yaad aya
Haal-e dil hum bhi sunate leikin
Jab woh rukhsat hua tab yaad aya
Beith ke saaya-e gul mein Nasir
Hum buhat roye woh jab yaad aya.
Ah, I remember why my heart beats so
Tis but your sweet love's memory.
I stumbled but was saved
Tis but your sweet memory that helped
The day was passed in agony
Yet the night comes again to torture
My love, you forget your promise
Only to remember when I am dead.
I wander amongst vales in your love
Remembering thine hearty town
Ah but I remembered to lament
Only when my beloved left
I cry tears of remorse and desire
Under the tree of love, tis spring!
The passion of love's desire and the depth of feelings for the beloved in a relationship is lamented in this ghazal:
Khayal -e tark-e tammana na krsake tou bhi
Udaasyon ka madawa na karsake tou bhi
Kabhi woh waqt bhi aaye ke koi lamha-e aish
Mere baghair gwara na karsake tou bhi
Khuda woh din na dikhai tujhe ke meri tarha
Meri wafa pe bharosa na karsake tou bhi
Mein apna aqda-e dil tujh ko saunp deta hun
Barda maza ho agar wa na karsake tou bhi
Tujhe yeh gham ke meri zindagi ka kiya hoga
Mujhe yeh zid ke madawa na karsake tou bhi
Na kar khayale talaafi ke mere zakhme wafa
Woh zakhm hai jise acha na karsake koi.
I wish that the pain of my sorrow
does not leave your heart
That you never forget my love lest I lose you
I wish that there is a time
That each moment without me is a torture for you.
Ah, may not there be any moment for you
That my love is not assured .
I entrust you with the knot on my heart
Open lest you fail to find my love
I do not want my love's wounds to heal
Worry do not for me, my love.
Fikre Tameer-e aashiyaan bhi hai
Khofe bemehreeye khizan bhi hai
|Meherzaidi, writer, translator.|
(I tried to choose selected poems for my post but could not. Will have to write more on this as all his poetry is too beautiful to avoid publishing. Barge Ne is published by Maktaba-e Khayal, Lahore, 8 Hakem street, Islampura, Lahore. His other books are Diwaan,Pehli Baarish,Nishate Khawab, Sur Ki Chaya, Khushk Chashme ke kinare(Prose).