Would you permit me – by Nizar Kabbani [1 of 2]





by Nayyar Hashmey


On June 4, 2012, I inserted a poem by Nizar Qabbani, the great Syrian poet and diplomat. The poem was titled ‘A Lesson in Drawing’. Believe me, dear readers, I was so moved by the poem that, I, at once decided to put this up here on these pages, so as to share with you the intensity of love, the passion and pain – Nizar the poet felt – while encapsulating the harsh realities of life — through words in his poetry.

Here now is another one, again from NQ. particularly noticeable in this poem are Nizar’s thoughtss about religion and the mullahs. Thoughts on how a beautiful religion is relegated to a set of rituals by a semi-literate clergy who have turned a beautiful religion into a bigoted set of soulless practice, a narrow minded interpretation.

While  writing this preamble to Nizar’s work what struck me most was:

In a country where thinkers are assassinated,

And writers are considered infidels

And books are burnt,

In societies that refuse the other,

And force silence on mouths and thoughts forbidden,

And to question is a sin,

I must beg your pardon,

Would you permit me?

Would you permit me?

To bring up my children as I want,

And not to dictate on me your whims and orders?
Would you permit me?

To teach my children that the religion is first to God,

And not for religious leaders or scholars or people?

Would you permit me to say,

That God has forbidden killing the human spirit, And who kills wrongly a human being

Is as if he killed all human kind,

And no Moslem has the right

To frighten another Moslem?
Would you permit me

To teach my children that God is greater,

More just, and more merciful

Than all the (religious) scholars on earth combined?

And that his standards are different

From the standards of those trading the religion,

And that his accountability is kinder

And more merciful?

Would you permit me?


Ijazat ho agar mujhko

Tau maen bhi parwarish apnay bachon ki

Iss tarah kr loon

Ke inki zindagi pur noor ho

Aisay hawalon se

Ke jinn se hai meri tehzeeb ka

Har aaeena roshan

Maen batlaon bachon ko

Ke mazhab ka ta’alluq bass Khuda-e-Lam Yazal se hae

Nahin uss ka koi rishta kissi be-ilm alam se

Ke inssano ko dukh daina

Innhain takleef main rakhna

Ye aese jurm haen, jinki muafi

Ho nahin sakti

Maen apnay bachon ko

Azab-e-qabr ki tafseel se mahfooz hi rakhoon

Maen apnay bachon ko Rabb-e-Do-Jahan

Ki Azmat-e-bemisl samjhaoon

Kahoon unn se

Ke uss ke Rehmat-o-Insaf ke aagay

Ye sab ke sab mazhabi alim

Ik naqsh-e-khiyali haen

Ye saray deen Ke Tajir

Piyalay haen jo khali haen

(Urdu translation: Amjad Islam Amjad)


Next: Would you permit me – by Nizar Kabbani [2 of 2[

You might also like:

A Lesson in Drawing

Source   Title image



We do not claim exclusive rights on all articles, images or videos published on this site. The sources we use to create our articles, images, videos etc. are credited with a proper linkback. However, we do host material from unknown authors we receive via mails, from friends and our readers.
If you own copyrights to some material and you want us to remove it from our pages, contact us to claim your ownership and we will either credit you, or if you wish – completely remove the content.
Wonders of Pakistan supports freedom of expression and this commitment extends to our readers as well. Constraints however, apply in case of a violation of WoP Comments Policy. We also moderate hate speech, libel and gratuitous insults.

3 replies to “Would you permit me – by Nizar Kabbani [1 of 2]

Leave a Reply to Irfan Shafi Cancel reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this:
close-alt close collapse comment ellipsis expand gallery heart lock menu next pinned previous reply search share star