Remembering Ghalib – Bazichae Atfaal Hai Dunya Mere Aagay, Hota Hai Shab-O-Roz Tamasha Mere Aagay

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Sukhan mai khamae Ghalib ki Aatash afshaani
Yakee hai humko bhi, lekin ab uss mai Damm kya hai “

If universality, timelessness, and originality are three main among other touchstones of poetry, Ghalib then is far ahead of these criteria.

Mirza Assadullah Khan Ghalib born in an era of the socio-political restructuring of India shares the podium with few of those poets of human history whose poetry, with all its humane character, sounds at times as “Nawaye Sarosh”.


Ghalib Primarily redefined and enriched Urdu lexicon and is credited for introducing “Tarakeeb”, that were hitherto unheard of in Urdu poetry. He said

“Ya Rab zamana mujko mitata hai Kis liye
Lohe jahaa pe Harfi muqarrar nahi hu mai

This is quite a fair representation of human sensitivities as opposed to constricted Sufi acclaim that:

“Har giz na meerad aa ki dillash zinda shud ba ishq
Sabt ast bar jareedae aalam dawaami ma “

Which is inconceivable to the large majority of people living outside Sufi episteme. This is what Ghalib is good at, that is turning an individual experience into the universal phenomenon. He was probably the first to come out of ” khammi zulfi yaar ” and to ask such daring questions like:

“Sabz O Gul kaha se aaye hai
Abr kya cheez yeh hawa kya hai “


Even his “Mashooqa” lives out of classical canonization, whereby the real characters are turned into untenable abstractions. Ghalib Actualises the abstract, wherever he thinks it necessary to bring it in conformity with living realities. When it comes to abstracting the material, Ghalib displays his masterly poetic magic to claim:

“Nazaray ne bhi kaam kiya wa naqaab ka
Masti se har nigah tere rukh par bikhar gai

This word crafting where each word speaks of its own bearing an independent existence is something good poetry is characterized by. Ghalib is a commentator both on “Gammay Ishq ” as well as ” Gammi Rozgar”, he speaks in one breath of man, God and universe, the metaphysical triplet.


He lives a life in horizontal plane and only imports vertical metaphors to embellish the horizontal existence. His poetic insight, which reached in him the point of culmination yells –

“Bazichae atfaal hai dunya mere aagay
Hota hai shab o roz tamasha mere aagay

Which in a handful of words describes entire paradigm of existence. He is not like Rumi a” Philosopher poet “, but of course like Hafiz and Goethe” a poet Philosopher “. His couplets contain subtle philosophical and metaphysical issues threadbared naked. His prompt Shikwa:

” Jab ki tuj bin koi nahi maujood
Phir yeh hungama ae khuda kya hai “


Gives us a concise picture of many schools of thought from much liked panthiesm to concurrent material existentialism. He is a daring experimentalist and doesn’t shy away from trying new stunts. He is not oath-bound to deconstruct but simultaneously cautions that:

Isko Manjoor Tunak Barfiye Mansoor Nahi. 

Article by Amir Suhail Wani.


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