C percent amore

Sunflowers and a tree

You occupy my world, no matter where I see…

You are as refreshing as ice tea
amidst a hot scorching day,
of which even trees seem to seek
a drowning place.
Yet, for one who can have you,
wouldn’t wish
the days of summer to ever end.

You are as loving and carefree
as new monsoon rain,
post storms and thunderous flash,
screams of which scare both
living and undead.
Yet, for one who can have you,
wouldn’t wish
the sigh of clouds to ever end.

You are as rejuvenating as the soil
of a holy place,
one that has received countless
subservient seeking liberation.
For one who can have you,
would sure become
a seed turning in a new leaf.

You’re as tender as the breeze
blowing from high gardens,
for the one who has served life
in a closet.
For one who can have you,
wouldn’t wish
a return, to any other imprisonment.

You are as fragrant as an incense
burning at steeple of the lovers,
those who sought life after death.
For one who can have you,
would sure linger more,
waiting for winds to gust
fast with your kisses.

You are as encompassing as lake,
the eyes of the valley land,
open for one who’s never sighted
any miracles.
For, one who can have you,
would keep praising without a flinch,
till each corner leaks stream.

You are as inviting as bird humming,
singing new song every morning,
perching on ear drums of one
who’s drunk sleeping.
For, one who can have you,
would not just trip at melodies,
but dance with silent symphonies.

Yet, my beloved, I know not,
how to define you
like you define all…
Way you carry in your essence,
the pathway to my soul.
Nor I carry any idea,
to spell what your world’s made for…
But then, what do I know…?
Since, I merely dwell at cent
of the C percent amore…

shutterstock_1624537041[1]

Yet, what I love of you, is speckle in the galaxy.

– Dedicated to the beloved, who we love all about, yet only like the one away from the ocean, like merely standing on the shore.

Image Credits:
1. Sunny Meadow – Stock image (GettyImages)
2. Pinching Galaxy – Stock image – (shutterstock)

Her Eyes

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“Eyes are portal to the soul.”
If you ever feel confused, or unsure,
and want to find out if you’ve really begun
to fall for someone,
then just ask yourself this…
how much you adore your beloved’s eyes…?
Enough, to dive deep in them and
make the world inside them your own?
Wish you enough, to see what they see,
what they reflect, what they rise and fall on?

My friend, told me that…
But I for one, never knew how one can ever describe the eyes….

I mean, how can you do it?
You gonna define its color…?
You gonna express how they shine…?
You gonna fall for its shape or its size..?
Or you gonna describe way they close and reopen…?

Like, what possibly any pair of eyes can do differently
that would make them stand apart
from countless others belonging to similar species…?

And then one day it struck me…
I knew one pair of eyes, perhaps, more than I knew mine.
It was the day I realized, “I know her enough…”
Too clichéd, yeah? I asked my self the same…
But it wasn’t like I fell for those beautiful gems,
right the moment I gazed into them.
It took its time. But to be honest…
It wasn’t fair, from beginning to the end.

I think, it’s really impossible to ignore
the raw beauty they possessed,
after all…

How could one possibly ignore one that saw the pain
like a sky mourning for the Sun after the rain…
Like reminding us, how often we don’t appreciate
worth of something until its far too late.
Eyes that would not just mourn but burn
the Sun within to set things right the way they can…
Applying herself like a dawn of hope in dark nights
of those who’d rather wish to sleep
forever under blankets of numbness post pain
than remaining awake to heal and change
for what’s left still, what can still be saved.

How could I have escaped the effect of eyes
that were inclined to see something positive,
something worth saving and cherishing
in every soul they ever met.
Like a sprout of a fragrance that leaves from the flowers
irrespective of whose surrounding they engage.
Eyes that saw things based on their intensity, their essence,
no matter caste, creed, color, background, ethnicity,
social status, or religious difference.
Like a wind tending the garden, touching all the flowers
with the love and grace, without splitting or grading them.

How can one turn an eye blind at way her eyes would see the world
like a living orchestra constantly producing symphonies…
Way her eyes would manage to see and read something to be learned
and kept as a part of soul out of even catastrophe…
Like her eyes would know exactly where to look, to find
a voice in silence, to find expressions in stoic and music in noise…
In totally bland and apparently common things of life,
that we tend to ignore trivially… they discover sense and poetry.

I think I can define…
Its color…? They’re rainbows and butterfly mosaics combined…
in a way that one can never keep its full spectrum confined.
They give life to world, leaking warmth in seams.
Its shine…? They’re an ocean with sparkling glitter of skies.
Reflecting both the golden hues of day and moonlight’s silver gown in night.
They give hope, they speak of light.
Its shape…? They’ve a shape of the sea shells, enclosing pearls within,
they’re made to carry even anomalies, that can emerge into exquisite.
Its size..? They’re limitlessly deep… pathway to the cosmos,
way to the galaxies, deep and wide than anything ever seen.
They give intensity to those who dwell just on cursory or surfaces…
And way they close and reopen…? Well, they keep themselves open like wells,
to contain the wishes, to encapsulate the moments, the vivid dreams,
moreover, they open like the wings of angels… determined to help spirits.
And they close on like the gates of palace and castles, saving everything inside,
from those who’re unfriendly and intrusive. Who try to malign a soul or mind.

I just love the way they sees things…
And never once yet it happens that they rise with a pride
or drown with keeping an air of numbness or vanity…
They are curious like the baby’s, wishing to know more and yet
as still and weary as an elderly’s piercing the hides to dwell deep.

Yes, I know from her eyes, that I love the world
that she inhabits in them, all that’s read by them,
world that these eyes reflect on,
but above all, I love the way they convert pain
into something positive,
way they forgive, way they rejoice, way they stare deep inside,
way they make one realize…
there’s more to world then what meets the eyes.
I do indeed, love her eyes…

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– Dedicated to the beloved’s eyes… (this poem is an ensemble piece of several small poems written on same theme).

Image Credits:
1. Soul Washout by Clarisse Litiatco (Deviantart)
2. Colored Eye Drawing by Kate Louise Powell (Pinterest)

Trampoline of Hope

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The Fallen Angel – I look for you, to rise again…

My love,
If I ever escape from your pull
remind me, like a Star,
how I need your charm,
to remain like a moon,
rather a dull rock.

If I ever get lost amidst the way
remind me, my love,
like a Sun,
how I need your direction,
to remain like a journeyman,
rather a mere wanderer.

If I ever begin to drown in ocean
remind me, my love,
like a steadfast sail,
how I need to work the waves,
to remain like a swimmer,
rather a sunk weight.

If I ever begin falling from grace
remind me, my love,
with a holy spell,
how I need to tend my wings,
to remain an angel,
rather a devil’s advocate.

If I ever feel defeated in battle
remind me, my love,
like a trampoline of hope,
how I can rise back,
to remain in knight’s form,
rather than a mercy rag.

If I ever start loosing a grip
remind me, my love,
like your hem’s knit,
how I need a safety net,
to remain like a mountain,
rather than an abyss.

If I ever begin to break in skin,
remind me, my love,
like one sculpting,
how I need to collect shards,
to remain composed as a piece,
rather than one fallen apart.

Remind me always,
my love
of our days,
the tears we shed,
and laughs we had,
moments we made,
for all time we spent.

But, do bring me back,
from depths of darkness.
For you’ve to remember this,
light is needed the most
at the gloomiest.

Angel+in+Sky[1]

The Flying Angel – It’s your spirit that always keeps me propelled.

– Dedicated to the beloved – who fills our heart with hope and joy, never giving up on us, no matter what.

Image Credits:
1. Fallen Angels (Cover art) – tophdgallery.com
2. Angel in Sky – blog.gggodonou.me

Embrace in love, or let me find rejection, I dwell unsober (Thukrao ab ke pyaar karo main nashe mei huun)

– Performed live in his concert by legend Jagjit Singh, the ghazal casts such an intoxicating spell, that everyone in audience too finds self in a spell-bound stupor.

Translation:

Embrace in love,
or let me find rejection,
I dwell unsober.
Do whatever pleases
your kind subjection
I dwell unsober.

Though, still am proving
my unfaltering love for you.
But you can’t believe
an unsigned confession,
I dwell unsober.

Let me have a fall but
try keep my essence intact.
Least you can do
with a resigned attention,
I dwell unsober.

Let me miss steps to
the heavens, oh preachers.
You just go on placing
consigned contention,
I dwell unsober.

Yet again, in a stupor,
I’m crossing all the borders,
Don’t you shower me
with your blind affection…
I dwell unsober.

– (Extra couplets, part of original poem):

Rejoice now for right
you’ve earned, oh followers!
Choose what suits
your refined apprehension,
I dwell unsober.

How Shahid will be known
to one unaware of the self?
You hold on and wait
for a divined ascension,
I dwell unsober.

– Dedicated to those who’re intoxicated.

Thukrao ab ke pyar karo
main nashe mei huun
jo chaho mere yaar karo
main nashe mei huun

Ab bhi dila raha hu
yakeen-e-wafa magar
mera na aitbaar karo
main nashe mei huun

Girne do tum mujhe
mera saagar sambhal lo
itna to mere yaar karo
main nashe mei huun

Mujhko qadam qadam pe
bhatakne do wayizon
tum apna kaarobaar karo
main nashe mei huun

Phir bekhudi mein
hudd se guzarne laga hun
itna na mujh se pyar karo
main nashe mei huun

Ab tumko ikhtiyar hai
ae ahl-e-karwan
jo raah ikhtiyar karo
main nashe mei huun

Apni jise nahi, usay
Shahid ki kiya khabar
Tum us ka intezar karo
main nashe mei huun

Original poem by poet: Shahid Kabir

Urdu version:

ٹھکراؤ اب کہ پیار کرو
میں نشے میں ہوں
جو چاہو مرے یار کرو
میں نشے میں ہوں

اب بھی دلا رہا ہوں
یقینِ وفا مگر
میرا نہ اعتبار کرو
میں نشے میں ہوں

گرنے دو تم مجھے
میرا ساگر سمبھال لو
اتنا تو مرے یار کرو
میں نشے میں ہوں

مجھ کو قدم قدم پے
بھٹکنے دو واعظوں
تم اپنا کاروبار کرو
میں نشے میں ہوں

پھر بے خودی میں حد سے
گزرنے لگا ہوں میں
اتنا نہ مجھ سے پیار کرو
میں نشے میں ہوں

اب تم کو اختیار ہے
اے اہلِ کارواں
جو راہ اختیار کرو
میں نشے میں ہوں

اپنی جسے نہیں
اسے شاہدؔ کی کیا خبر
تم اس کا انتظار کرو
میں نشے میں ہوں

– شاہد کبیر

The Fleeting Star

23-beach-sea-photography[1]

I see you in moon’s,
I see you in star’s light,
as their glimmer blankets
the roads, homes, valleys
and ceaseless sky…
Reciprocating the eyes
seeking to extinguish darkness with light
“I am yours, just –
slip your fingers into mine…”

I see you in waves
I see you in tides,
as they run across the miles
and dance on bed of sea
infinite…
Reciprocating to the wind
that takes them into an arm
“I am yours, just –
slip your fingers into mine…”

I see you in rains,
I see you in cloud’s sigh,
that falls across the land
and holds under its spell
the magic infinite…
Reciprocating to the skies
that caresses them tight
“I am yours, just –
slip your fingers into mine…”

I see you in lows,
I see you in highs,
the ranges that are spread
atop the river’s spine,
as far as they see, the naked eyes…
Reciprocating to the sight
that chases it beyond all lines
“I am yours, just –
slip your fingers into mine…”

I see you in dreams,
I see you in rhymes,
those moments that carry
the poems sublime, with which
you compose symphony of life.
Reciprocating each heart beat,
tracing silage, for last location and sign,
“I am yours, just –
slip your fingers into mine…”

But you’re not here… my love,
you’re in my mind,
as a silhouette left
after the Sun has drowned.
– A light, that lingers,
even after star has ventured
far away.

In each moment that
I come closer,
I try to make you mine…
But you slip…
from my embrace
like I am trying to hold
a water or sand
too tight…

You’re a happiness that I find,
amidst a time when
one moment lapses onto another…
right at those intersections
where one line meets the other
to complete a circle.
And as much as I want
that moment to last,
I still find myself in void
after I loose your trail…
fortunately often
with moist on my lips to tell,
infinite did kiss the finite.

rain_ot_ocean_beach[1]

– Dedicated to those infinities that every finite wants to hold on to, for as long as possible…

Image Credits:
1. Beach Photography – wallpaper (webneel.com)
2. Ocean Rain – Stock wallpaper

Paper Boats

cTxAykL8

One day I saw,
a person from my window.
A man double my age,
walking down an opposite lane,
wearing a black rain coat,
amidst the hot day’s temp…

He stood beside a pole,
started looking down a road…
Perhaps, he was waiting for
someone to be there,
or may be, it’s where
his ride was to stop.

Day after day, I saw him
repeating all the same,
came no ride to take him,
nor came any friend.
I wondered what was it about
that made him stick
to a single frame.

And then one day he broke
his pattern all same…
He did show up to be there,
but could no longer stand.
He sat there still,
till an eve’s end,
even when his body started
showing signs of pain.

What would mount up
I wondered,
to such a resilience.
Though, I lived my life
across the docks,
yet never saw any person
pulling an act like that…

Like a novice, who spent
majority of his life at pier,
watching boats all day,
making to and forth in circles…
It was hard to see a man,
not showing pedigree of passengers,
but instead a sign of a carriage.

One day he didn’t budge
from its posture,
he’s still as a milestone,
for the whole long day…
Curious, I ventured close,
to see if he’s doing well,
I found him having, apparently
his last few breaths…

He did notice my presence
in his surrounding, and
hinted me to give him a hand.
He pulled me closer to self,
with little energy he had left.
And uttered few words in my ear,
that hardly made any sense.

I saw smile in his eyes,
like a glittering silver fountain,
as if, of a soldier that has won
all fights, all the battles…
Till I saw that shine began
to gradually faint,
before I could register
it was a parting stance.

As he died, I felt,
I had lost a friend,
yet I reflected, I knew nothing
much about that man.
In few moments, I noticed
he had something
enclosed in his hands,
A paper in his fists,
something tightly clenched.

It was a letter written,
perhaps, with a red fountain:
“I’ll be there my love, with you,
for we have to follow what
we weaved,
and dance once again in a rain
that made us fall for each other
at drizzling…
I know you’ll be waiting!”

I recalled, I used to think,
one day I would become
an architect of a vessel,
that may offer wanderer
a ride to the destined place.
Little did I feel before
that man was a vessel too
for a soul’s fate.

It was then, I realized,
he waited for the beloved,
like a kid,
who after creating a paper boat,
drops it into a puddle of water –
standing still after the rain,
looking out for the wind,
wishing it to be sailed…

How few of us ever know
that a promise, the journey,
matters more
than an eventual place.
That it’s attempts that make us
know the love’s true strength.

Suddenly, sky started to cry,
like it was too attending a funeral.
I don’t know whether it was
to greet or to bid him farewell.
Right with noise of first thunder,
his last words started to make sense…
“Dream, create, rejoice…
Don’t leave stones unturned!”

together_by_arefin03-d7xpk7r[1]

– Dedicated to my maternal grand dad: Mr. Sadruddin Sohani (who passed away two days ago, loosing his fight with Cancer, but winning a war called “life” – by spending it like a King, till the very last moment).

Image Credits:
1. ‘The Harbour’ by Aminah Tasleem.
2. ‘Together’ by Arefin03 (Deviantart).

Crossing the eyes, what gaze expresses, I seem to write (Chehray Parhta Aakhien Likhta Rehta Hoon)

– Only rendition of this excellent ghazal I found on internet is one performed by Ustad Hamid Ali Khan.
(For copyright reasons, I haven’t found nor was allowed to upload it on Soundcloud).

Translation:

Crossing the eyes, what
gaze expresses, I seem to write
For all I see more, the lesser
for senses, I seem to write…

All carriages of souls seem to
resemble ancient trees…
In place of an embrace, notion
of branches, I seem to write…

All manners of composing a
poem have become lost on me,
Mere broken rhymes and parched
lines, I seem to write…

What else would I rather do
in a distance from you…
On your name lengthy fantasy
scriptures, I seem to write.

Silhouettes of your locks,
keep me drowned in dreaming.
In praise of golden hues,
silver glimmers, I seem to write.

In crimson fragrant journey
to reach milestones of love…
Walls of piety traditions and
societal customs, I seem to write.

After meeting you, I’ll sure
reiterate you, state of the sky.
In nights of our separation,
new stars, I seem to write.

Dry flowers, wet letters, few poems
for wounds of separation,
For all gifts you bestowed,
pleasant appraisals, I seem to write.

Yet, eyes holding rivers at bay,
appear to keep smiling…
Till in name of beloved, Mohsin,
new sonnets, I seem to write.

– Dedicated to writers, that keep returning to one theme again and again because they haven’t expressed enough for it…

Chehray parhta ankhen likhta rehta hun,
Main bhi kesi baten likhta rehta hun

Sare jisam darakhton jese lagtay hain,
Or bahon ko shakhen likhta rehta hun

Tujhko khaat likhnay k tewar bhool gae,
Aarhi tirchi satrain likhta rehta hun

Tere hijar main or mujhe kya karna ha,
Tere naam kitabain likhta rehta hun

Teri zulf k saye dhiyaan main rehtay hain,
Main subhon ko shamain likhta rehta hun

Apne piyar k phool mehakti rahon main,
Logon ki dewaren likhta rehta hun

Tujhse mil kar sare dukh dohraon ga,
Hijar ki sari batain likhta rehta hun

Sookhay phol kitaben zakham judai k,
Teri sab soghaten likhta rehta hun

Uski bheegi palken hansti rehti hain,
Mohsin jab tak ghazlen likhta rehta hun.

– Original poem by renowned Pakistani poet: Mohsin Naqvi

چہرے پڑھتا آنکھیں لکھتا رہتا ہو۔۔
میں بھی کیسی باتیں لکھتا رہتا ہوں۔۔

سارے جسم درختوں جیسے لگتے ہیں
اور بانہوں کو شاخیں لکھتا رہتا ہوں۔۔

مجھ کو خط لکھنے کے تیور بھول گئے
آڑی ترچھی سطریں لکھتا رہتا ہوں۔۔

تیرے ہجر میں اور مجھے کیا کرنا ہے؟
تیرے نام کتابیں لکھتا رہتا ہوں۔۔

تیری ذُلف کے سائے دھیان میں رہتے ہیں
میں صُبحوں کی شامیں لکھتا رہتا ہوں۔۔

اپنے پیار کی پھول مہکتی راہوں میں
لوگوں کی دیواریں لکھتا رہتا ہوں۔۔

تجھ سے مل کر سارے دکھ دہراؤں گا
ہجر کی ساری باتیں لکھتا رہتا ہوں۔۔

سوکھے پھول، کتابیں، زخم جدائی کے
تیری سب سوغاتیں لکھتا رہتا ہوں۔۔

اس کی بھیگی پلکیں ہنستی رہتی ہیں
محسن جب تک غزلیں لکھتا رہتا ہوں۔۔

محسن نقوی