24th March 2014

  • Rashid Abbasi: Why do people write poems? I mean don’t you ever feel discouraged?

    Musab Iqbal: discouraged with/discouraged for?

    Rashid Abbasi:We belong to a different era. The method to express yourself creatively has changed. Technology has made it easy at the same time everyone is too busy in dealing with information overflow. When people are too busy in other modes of entertainment or communication. who has the time to contemplate or find out hidden meaning of a poem? or is it important for me to think about that? Because at the same time I feel I should keep on writing and my love for poetry doesn’t mean that I am a good poet.

    Musab Iqbal: I think for me writing is the only way not to get discouraged, through writing I get the light, I feel the light. Writing is not only about expressing but it has deeper project the project of archiving the time – the emotion of the time – the tension of the time. My poem is the translation of my time. The question may arise that why am I writing a poem – was it intended?

    In age of absurd material/industrial production or hyper capitalism what poetry has to do may be asked as a question. I think Walter Benjamin in two of his brilliant work raised similar question. One, while writing on poet Baudelaire and one on question of art in age of mechanical production. His both writing might help.

    I can guarantee you one thing even everything is on table, everything is on google – the thinking, the thought has a future. Poetry is a form of thought. It may take new forms of expression but since thinking has a future, poetry has too

    It was indeed a beautiful conversation.
    Now, a Poem* by N.M. Rashid which describes beautifully the preoccupation with creative effort and state of absorption.

    Phir bhii andeshah vuh aaindah hai jis mae goyaa
    miir ho , miirzaa ho , miiraajii ho
    kuchh nahiin dekhte hain

    Nevertheless thought is that future in which, so to speak,
    Mir would be, Mirza [Ghalib] would be, Miraji would be
    we see nothing

    mahvar-e ishq kii khvuud-mast haqiiqat ke sivaa
    apne hii biim-o-rajaa apnii hii suurat ke sivaa

    except for the self-intoxicated reality of the absorption in passion,
    except for our own terror and hope, our own face,

    apne rang , apne badan , apnii hi qaamat ke sivaa
    apnii tanhaaii-e jaan-kaah kii vahshat ke sivaa

    except for our complexion, our body, our stature,
    except for the wildness of our life-exhausting solitude,

    dil-kharaashii-o- jigar-chaakii-o- khuun-afshaanii
    huun to naa-kaam par hote hain mujhe kaam bahut

    heart-lacerating and liver-tearing and blood-scattering
    I’m useless, but there remain for me many tasks.