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Best Faiz Ahmad Faiz Poems

Faiz Ahmad Faiz not only revolutionized the air of India and Pakistan with his powerful Urdu poetry but also sowed soft emotions in his readers’ hearts. He was a man of wide experience that reflects in his poems. Here, we are going to present 10 of the best poems of Faiz Ahmad Faiz that he ever wrote. Read till the end and feel how Faiz’s revolutionary verse holds the universe!

Best Faiz Ahmad Faiz Poems


Quatrain: Last night, your lost memories crept into my heart

Quatrain, in Urdu Qita, is a poem consisting of four lines. This short verse of Faiz is about the lost thoughts encompassing a lady that springs deeper emotions in a lover’s heart. It is described as the cool morning breeze in the desert of a lover’s heart. Here’s the Urdu version of the poem:

Raat yun dil mein teri, khoyi hui yaad aayi

Jaise viraane mein chupke se bahaar aa jaye

Jaise sahraon mein haule se chale baad-ae-naseem

Jaise bimaar ko be-wajaah quraar aa jaaye

The English translation of the verse reads:

Last night your faded memory came to me

As in the wilderness spring comes quietly,

As, slowly, in the desert, moves the breeze,

As, to a sick man, without cause, comes peace.

Source: Last night your faded memory came to me


Before You Came

“Before You Came” is one of the best love poems of Faiz Ahmad Faiz. It is included in the list of the 50 best romantic poems of the world. In this poem, the speaker describes how things were just the same as they were. There was nothing new. Everything seemed mundane until the lady came and painted his world with a magical how. When she left the man, the world returned to normal. In order to bring back the joy in his life, the speaker wishes her to stay with him. Let’s read a few lines from the poem.

Before you came,

things were as they should be:

the sky was the dead-end of sight,

the road was just a road, wine merely wine.

(…)

Don’t leave now that you’re here—

Stay. So the world may become like itself again:

so the sky may be the sky,

the road a road,

and the glass of wine not a mirror, just a glass of wine.

The opening of the Urdu text reads:

tum jo naa aa’e the to har chiiz vahii thii kih jo hai

aasmaaN hadd-e-nazar, raahguzar raahguzar, shiishaah-e-mai,

shiishaah-e-mai

Source: Before You Came


When Autumn Came

“When Autumn Came” is one of the best-known poems about nature and change that Faiz ever wrote. This piece describes the autumnal landscape in emotive terms. The lack of greenery, the cadence of death, and a wish for overall rejuvenation are the themes of the poem. Here are a few lines from the poem.

This is the way that autumn came to the trees:

it stripped them down to the skin,

left their ebony bodies naked.

It shook out their hearts, the yellow leaves,

scattered them over the ground.

Anyone could trample them out of shape

undisturbed by a single moan of protest.

Source: When Autumn Came


Ghazal: I am being accused of loving you

This ghazal or ode is written either addressing freedom or truth. In this poem, Faiz describes the abstract idea as a lady whom he loved. His only crime was loving the idea of freedom. In order to relieve his heart from the metaphorical might, he wrote this piece. It appears in his Prison Journal. Let’s have a look at the few lines from the ode.

In the hand of time is not the rolling of my fate

In the hand of time roll just the days, that is all

A day will come for sure when I will see the truth

My beautiful beloved is behind a veil, that is all

The night is young, Faiz start saying a Ghazal

A storm of emotions is raging inside, that is all

Source: I am being accused of loving you


We Shall See

“Hum Dekhenge”, in English We Shall See,  is one of the best-known nazms of Faiz. It was composed as a medium of protest against Zia Ul Haq’s oppressive regime. Faiz’s song gained a rapid following as a song of resistance and defiance. It is a powerful lyric originating directly from an oppressed heart. The Urdu verse alongside the English translation is charged with an attitude that never bows to unjust actions inflicted on humankind.

Hum Dekhenge, Hum Dekhenge

Lazim hai ke hum bhi dekhenge

Hum Dekhenge, Hum Dekhenge

Wo din ke jis ka wada hai

Jo lauh-e-azl mein likha hai, Hum Dekhenge

Hum bhi dekhenge, Hum bhi dekhenge

Source: Faiz Ahmad Faiz recites Hum Dekhenge

The English translation reads:

We shall see

Certainly we, too, shall see

that day that has been promised to us

(…)

Then the masses, people of God will rule

Who I am too

and so are you

There will rise one cheer- I am God!

Who I am too

and so are you

Source: We Shall See


My Heart, My Traveler

“My Heart, My Traveler” is another of Faiz’s best poems. This poem is about a lonely speaker who finds it difficult to survive in a world full of strangers. All he seeks is death, nothing else. Only then he can get some sort of relief. This poem probably alludes to Faiz’s mental state while he was in self-exile. Let’s have a look at a few lines from the Urdu text.

Dil e man Musafir e man

Meray dil meray musafir

hua phir sey hukm sadir

k watan badar hon hum tum

dein gali gali sadain

karein rukh nagar nagar ka

ke suraagh koi paein

kisi yar e nama bar ka

The last few lines of the English version are:

How can I convey to you, my friend

how horrible is a night of loneliness 

It would suffice to me

if there were just some count

I would gladly welcome death

if it were to come but once.

Source: My Heart, My Traveler


A Prison Evening

In this poem, Faiz captures the conflicting state of a speaker’s mind who is imprisoned. The separation from his lover, a reference to his motherland, makes him sad indeed. Yet the nocturnal beauty from the prison lightens his mind.

This thought keeps consoling me:

though tyrants may command that lamps be smashed

in rooms where lovers are destined to meet,

they cannot snuff out the moon, so today,

nor tomorrow, no tyranny will succeed,

no poison of torture make me bitter,

if just one evening in prison

can be so strangely sweet,

if just one moment anywhere on this earth.

Source: A Prison Evening


Loneliness

Perhaps, it is the most excellent way to introduce loneliness as a stranger that knocks at the mind’s door or a passerby who walks past the door without even bothering to who was inside. In this poem, Faiz talks about loneliness in a way that makes readers blow out their candles of mind and feel what loneliness actually means!

Someone is at the door again, my weeping heart, no, no one

Perhaps a passerby, who will go somewhere else

The night has passed, waiting, the star-dust is settling

Sleepy candle-flames are flickering in distant palaces

Every pathway has passed into sleep, tired of waiting

Alien dust has smudged all traces of footsteps

Blow out the candles, let the wine and cup flow

Close and lock your sleepless doors

No one, no one will come here now.

Source: Loneliness


Don’t ask me for the same love, my sweetheart

As the title says, this poem is about a heartbroken speaker. He ironically tells his lover not to ask for the former emotions that he had for her. Instead, she should realize what she had lost in the form of a person who knew how to love. Now, he has grown up both mentally and spiritually. So he can understand there are things more valuable than the union of love and suffering for it.

My sight returns to this as well, I am helpless

Your beauty is heart-warming still, but I am helpless

There are sufferings in the world other than the suffering of love

There are pleasures other than the delight of our union

Don’t ask me for the same love, my sweetheart!

Source: Don’t ask me for the same love, my sweetheart


Stanza: If they snatch my ink and pen

What happens to a poet when the oppressors try to paralyze his senses and make him submit to their tyranny? Does the heart still beat revolutionary spirits? Yes, it does. Not only it beats but it roars. In Faiz’s words,

Maata-e-loh-o-qalam chin gayi to kya ghum hai

K khun-e-dil men dubo li hain ungliyan mene

Zuban pe muhar lagi hai to kya ke rakh di hai

Har ek halqa-e-zanjeer men zubaan mene

It means:

If they snatch my ink and pen,

I should not complain,

For I have dipped my fingers

In the blood of my heart.

I should not complain

Even if they seal my tongue,

For every ring of my chain

Is a tongue ready to speak.

Source: If they snatch my ink and pen


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