Ghazals Introspective melodies

The all consuming passion

I had heard this ghazal nearly twenty, maybe twenty five years ago in an abridged form , clearly temporally constrained by the limitations of a studio recording. Ahmad Shahzad’s short ghazal : just a few ash’aar set to an ethereal composition with just a tabla and a harmonium in varying raags. The commonest rendition is in the amazing sampoorna raag Yaman of the early evening by the undisputed King, nay Emperor of the format, Mehdi Hasan. I loved it then. Early today morning, I was sent a link to the same ghazal by my music loving accomplished shaayar friend from Philadelphia, Nick Maneckshaw, and was taken back by a few decades.

I then stumbled across a much longer version and loved it, too.

Ahmed Shahzad wrote very meaningful lines. One doesn’t need to spend too many words to express effectively, as was shown beautifully by Gulzar sahab. That could be the reason why I chose the format of a couplet to try to express myself. I do believe it takes some distillation of the thought process to bring it down to a couple of lines, rather than go on for longer. Having said that, I do admire the creativity of those who can indulge themselves, sharing their thoughts at length, given the rather well laid out confines of a classical ghazal, with its need for Matla, Radif, Qaafiya, Maqta, Behr, Misr-e-uulaa, Misra- e-sani and so on. This is a beautiful ghazal every way you look at it.

जल भी चुके परवाने हो भी चुकी रुस्वाई

शहज़ाद अहमद

जल भी चुके परवाने हो भी चुकी रुस्वाई,

अब ख़ाक उड़ाने को बैठे हैं तमाशाई……

तारों की ज़िया दिल में एक आग लगाते हैं,
आराम से रातों को सोते नहीं सौदाई.....

रातों की उदासी में ख़ामोश है दिल मेरा
बेहिस हैं तमन्नाएं नींद आये के मौत आई.....

अब दिल को किसी करवट आराम नहीं मिलता,

इक उम्र का रोना है दो दिन की शनासाई……….

अब वुसअत-ए-आलम भी कम है मिरी वहशत को,

क्या मुझ को डराएगी इस दश्त की पहनाई……..

जी में है कि इस दर से अब हम नहीं उट्ठेंगे.

जिस दर पे न जाने की सौ बार क़सम खाई……

I always am impressed by Mehdisaab’s unmatched ability to expound at length without any constraints at all, whenever he enters the arena of a live concert. There he is the be-all and end-all and he RULES. His sparse almost spartan frugality in terms of needs of instrumental accompaniment makes it easy for him to do so at will. There is hardly anyone else that can play out of tune/ veer off lost, the tanpura goes on, the tabalchi goes according to the set taal and Khansaheb plays the harmonium himself.

He has the amazing capability, the trained classical singer that he is, to render the same ghazal in the melodious, introspective raag of the late night, Darbari aka Darbari Kanada.

Take care folks, I have just got the news of the live music broadcast scheduled for today at 1120 am having being postponed due to circumstances beyond anyone’s control. Take care, I will let you know of the new date/ time.


By abchandorkar

Consultant Interventional Cardiologist, Pune, India

8 replies on “The all consuming passion”

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