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The Flag’s Complaint : a Poetic Pledge!

Guest Post by Syed Ali Abbas Zaidi

In this poem, the flag of Pakistan summons the common Pakistani citizen and expresses its grief on the countrywide mourning of Benazir Bhutto Shaheed, moreover it levels some complaints and reminiscences old times!

17 crore people asleep and someone cried
wake up from apathy, Bhutto died!
Sea of tears, a nation mourns
drenched in grief, the flag adjourns!

Thee cried with me, Thee felt my bliss
Thee shed thy blood, So that I exist!

From the chains of slavery, rose the man
the grace, the karma and the movement began!
with wisdom, faith and passion, beside my pole
with love so pure, the consummated goal!

The moment to thou, I was handed
My colors faded, My fate stranded;
between the people and the mighty tyrannts
but thee my beloved, remained silent!

My memory, though vague, still retains
the cries of those bloody stains!
and again, my heart is vexed with woe
burnt down streets, that gloomy show!

Now I am torn, My pole has rusted
But dont let me down, faith entrusted!
far from this dark, the fountains ply
fountains of hope, that never die!

brook of thy tears, go to the fountain
thy fears how foolish, thy lament vain!
What is this hope? wouldst thou rightly know?
Be aware, wake up and it will never cease to flow!

‘In the best interest of nation’ or personal lust of power
Rains of patriotism, or alcoholic showers ?
My countrymem, My sisters, My elderly peers
this is the time, to shatter all fears!

He calls it right, and right you deem?
what about Quaids vision, my Iqbal’s dream!
for this is the moment, the time is high
stand up for the right, or i will die!
No man with stick , or khaki hide
Is above my land or its pride! ‘

By Syed Ali Abbas Zaidi, a young inspirational poet who is one of the founding members of the recent students resistance movement across Pakistan

 


8 Comments

  • RootCanal |

    Poet Mr. Zaidi,
    Very sad poetry. My comments below:

    The moment to thou, I was handed
    My colors faded, My fate stranded;
    between the people and the mighty tyrannts
    but thee my beloved, remained silent!

    1. Who is the thou/thee in your poetry? Why are you using Shakepirian inglish? Please enter the 21st century.

    2. Please spell check your poetry – tyrannts is spelt tyrants, no double ‘n’.

    3. The moment the flag was handed was Aug 14, 1947 – how were the people who had liberated Pakistan ‘silent’ at that time? The poem has a convoluted time-line. Please rectify.

    4. Fate stranded? Where? All flags have stranded fates, at the top of a staff. You should have used a better idiom – ‘looking down from my forlorn resting place, I looked below and saw my nation burning’ or something to that effect.

    5. Please don’t sacrifice emotion for meter and rhyme.

    I hope your poetry improves with time.

    Regards from smoke-filled Karachi.

  • ShadyAzZ |

    Dear Root ,

    Thank u for the feedback , i sincerely appreciate that! but few things u have to keep in mind

    1 ) the flag of Pakistan summons the common Pakistani citizen and expresses its grief on the countrywide mourning of Benazir Bhutto Shaheed, moreover it levels some complaints and reminiscences old times – the intro to the poetic pledge as it is being called clarifies that the flag addresses the common man of pakistan ! – using thou/thee isnt shakesperian style of poetry , many other poets , present and past use it. There are no defined rules to address, nor there were ever b4!

    2) yes that is a spelling mistake!

    3) those who’re already dead , like most of the people who were alive at 1947 , arent being addressed here. Im addressing ‘ YOU ‘ , the flag has been handed over to every pakistani, who is sane enough to realize his patriotic affiliation to the country!

    4) fate stranded, it implies not what u are implying , its a metaphorical poetic licence and yes, the fate of a flag symbolizes a nations advancement/ retreat like it has for thousands of years! if i say the fate of my flag stranded between me and the dictator , i mean to imply that the future of my country is between my and ‘ his ‘ hands ! hes ruining it , and i pledge to resurrect it !

    5) you blame me for using thou/thee and you fail to realize that the most recent poetry is all freestyle poetry , read amir sulaiman ,the american-muslim poet and ull know what i talk about ! Meter and rhyme DONOT , I REPEAT DONOT NECESARRILY make a good poem , the subject does !

    6) this poem, uses poetic phrases( i wud call it ) , infact uses poetry as a TOOL to deliver a message. And sometimes the message u want to portray to ure readers matter , not the meter and rhyme and the cosmetics of poetry 🙂

    7) i pray for that too 🙂

  • ShadyAzZ |

    A Day in the Life of a Paradox

    The act of staying sane is making me crazy
    I watch the blind
    hear the deaf
    kill for life
    happy to be angry
    live for my death
    I hate my love
    live underground
    but attack from above
    a criminal for justice
    I fight for peace
    a fool for wisdom
    a man with a piece
    The chrome shines
    but my kind laughs at guns
    I fear none
    that’s when I got jacked by nuns
    I live in a time when priests cheat
    when a brothers keeper won’t keep
    when you can sell your body and sell your soul on the same street
    demons make millions selling death to children
    buildings takes place of nature
    the sun burns through glaciers
    pure energy
    you hear imagery
    and see sounds
    smells verbs and nouns
    looked up to those on the ground
    not those standing over
    nowhere I find a four leaf clover
    only weeds that are picked to inhale
    jail cells in hell
    my habitat repels
    light and such
    I can look for its touch but not much
    I’m in nights clutch
    trying to make me nocturnal
    paternal thoughts
    I watch
    cross the street
    slide and collide
    with reality
    the mentality of me is unknown
    not fully grown
    but owned by me
    and only me
    it’s swollen me
    to this illiotic level of poetry

    – read this, Amir Sulaiman, Its the perfect example of ‘ freestyle ‘ poetry that is ASLO being used by many hip-hop artists around the globe!

    – read the best selling poetry in america right now, and ull understand what form has it adopted!

    P.S on the stranded line, since the inception of pakistan, we have bin facing martial laws. We have bin fiting for democracy, 60 years of pakistan..more than 30 years of dictatorship, the flag complains to ‘ YOU ‘ that ever since they who made this country , handed over me to YOU, you have remained silent on this issue ! its time you start speaking up for the right!

  • ShadyAzZ |

    having said that, who doesnt like a piece with a good structure! But, I seek to mix freestyle verse with old/medieval styles to evolve this style of poetry ! yeah , burn me alive if u want to 😀

  • SULTAN ROME ADVOCATE SHANGLA |

    HAFIZ-E- ALPURI

    A famous Pushto poet and religious scholar.

    Shangla is a land of evergreen trees, pastures, cold and sweet springs, singing birds, beautiful waterfalls, waving fields, murmuring streams, snow covered and green mountains, coloured flowers, fragrant air, brave Yousafzai Pushtoon and historical stories which gave birth to great religious scholars, poets, politicians and famous personalities, who raised the heads of Pushtoons with pride in the whole world. Among them one of the famous name is Hafiz-e- Alpuri who as a poet served the Pushto literature a lot.

    According to “Tawarikh-e-Rahmat Khwani” of Roshan Khan his real name was Abdul Samad. He opened his eyes in beautiful valley of Ghwarband, Alpuri in Shangla. He belonged to the famous Mandan Yousafzai tribe of Pushtoon. He migrated here from Utmanzi Charsadda and settled here in Shangla.

    He was a great poet of Pushto as well as a great religious scholar, a pious person and Hafiz-e- Quran. He was known as Hafiz-e- Alpuri because he had learnt the holy Quran by heart and belonged to village Alpuri. He traveled to Peshawar, Mardan, Buner, Swat and other surrounding areas for getting religious education. He received his early education at Khwaza Khela which was a great centre of Islamic education at that time.

    When he was born, there was un Islamic customs in Shangla, Swat, Buner, dir, and other surrounding areas. He teach the people to lead their lives according to Islam and expressed his revolutionary thoughts through his poetry to eradicate the un Islamic customs and to enlighten the life of people with Islamic ways of life.

    He added a new chapter in Pushto literature by completing a collection of his poetry called Dewan-e- Hafiz-e- Alpuri. Dewan-e- Hafiz-e-Alpuri was published after his death for the first time 1927, and for the second time in 1932.

    His poetry is classified into five chapters on the basis of composition. Chapter one contains oneness of God and Prophet hood, second real love with God, third code and conduct of life and fifth counsels and advices.

    He used Persian and Arabic words very beautifully in his poetry, He is well known poet of Pushto. Those who have aesthetic sense for poetry and literature know his verses by heart.

    He was a staunch, pious and a punctual Muslim scholar. The purpose of his poetry teaches to do the right and condemn the wrong. He loved Islam whole heartedly. His love for All mighty Allah and his prophet Hazrat Muhammad (PBUH) is proved by his poetry.

    He was the poet of reality, though his poetry also contains verses about worldly things like beloved, wine etc. His real and spiritual poetry enlightened the mind of people and the love for All Mighty Allah and his prophet Hazrat Muhammad (PBUH) is increased.

    He was an egoist, content and monotheist poet. His poetry reflects the real love for All Mighty Allah and his prophet Hazrat Muhammad (PBUH) and the real code and conduct of Islamic way of life. There are a lot of stories about his saintliness and his miracles.

    Hafiz-e- Alpuri passed away at the age of 67 years in 1225 Hijhra. He was buried in Alpuri on Khwaza Khela Besham road among lush green mountains near the Ghwarban River.

    Some of the verses of the Hafiz-e- Alpuri are stated here.

    1. “Sal zala ka oki da Ka’abe na tawafoona,”

    “Khar da Masiha ba da Hajiano qareen na she”

    Translation; – If the donkey of hazrat Esa (PBUH) walks around Ka’aba a hundred times, He can’t reach the degrees of pilgrims.

    2. “Pa daro ka da neizay zakham raghegi”

    “Rogh ban a she pa daro zakham da jabay”

    Translation;- The wounds of spear can be treated but the wounds of tongue can’t be treated.

    3. “Bia mond darweshano khwand da khawro pa kandool ki”

    “Hich latafat na ka da shahano jam zareen ta “

    Translation;- Saints have tasted such a pleasure in the cup of mud that they never look at the golden cup of the kings.

    4. “Dunia sarab da nadanan ye oba yakhey ganri”

    “Mahroom tre droomi tashna lab qata’a la aba”

    Translation; – This world is mirage and fools mistake it for cold spring of water. But they lose hope when they leave the world with thrust and deprivation.

    5. “Pa sro shondo ki wor day hoom oba de”

    “Dwarha zest ka pa yaw zai ke be jadala”

    Translation; – Fire and water dwell at the same time in red lips without any fighting.

    6. “Ta che pa Ghwarband ke shanakht qemat ghwarhi Hafiza”

    “Bovi da mushk ghwari da dabgaro pa dukan ke”

    Translation; – O, Hafiz! You want identity and value in Ghwarband (Alpuri area). It is as if you want to buy scents in the shop of hides (skins).

    SULTAN ROME
    ADVOCATE HIGH COURT PESAWAR
    SHANGLA LAW CHAMBER
    SHANGLA DISTRICT BAR ASSOCIATION
    AT ALPURI, DISTRICT SHANGLA,
    NWFP PAKISTAN
    E-mail:- sultan_shangla@yahoo.com
    Ph # +92996850885 (Office)
    +92996885488 (Residence)