Kishwar Naheed

Rating: 4.33
Rating: 4.33

Kishwar Naheed Poems

The grass is also like me
it has to unfurl underfoot to fulfil itself
but what does its wetness manifest:
a scorching sense of shame
...

It is we sinful women
who are not awed by the grandeur of those who wear gowns
...

Punish me for I've written the significance of the dream
in my own blood written a book ridden with an obsession
Punish me for I have spent my life sanctifying the dream of the future
spent it enduring the tribulations of the night
...

Suspicion consumed me
As it does to this day

Lined by desire
I hid the wounds in my heart
...

In those times when the camera could not freeze
Tyranny for ever
Only untill those times
Should you have written
...

Before I ever married
my mother
used to have
nightmares.
...

Even if my eyes become the soles of your feet
even so, the fear will not leave you
that though I cannot see
I can feel bodies and sentences
...

Punish me for I've written the significance of the dream
in my own blood written a book ridden with an obsession
Punish me for I have spent my life sanctifying the dream of the future
spent it enduring the tribulations of the night
Punish me for I have imparted knowledge and the skills of the sword to the murderer and demonstrated the power of the pen to the mind
Punish me for I have been the challenger of the crucifix of hatred
I'm the glow of torches which burn against the wind
Punish me for I have freed womanhood from the insanity of the deluded night
Punish me for if I live you might lose face
Punish for if my sons raise their hands you will meet your end
If only one sword unsheaths itself to speak you will meet your end
Punish me for I love the new life with every breath
I shall live my life and shall doubly live beyond my life
Punish me for then the sentence of your punishment will end.
...

It is we sinful women
who are not awed by the grandeur of those who wear gowns

who don't sell our lives
who don't bow our heads
who don't fold our hands together.

It is we sinful women
while those who sell the harvests of our bodies
become exalted
become distinguished
become the just princes of the material world.

It is we sinful women
who come out raising the banner of truth
up against barricades of lies on the highways
who find stories of persecution piled on each threshold
who find that tongues which could speak have been severed.

It is we sinful women.
Now, even if the night gives chase
these eyes shall not be put out.
For the wall which has been razed
don't insist now on raising it again.

It is we sinful women
who are not awed by the grandeur of those who wear gowns

who don't sell our bodies
who don't bow our heads
who don't fold our hands together.
...

The grass is also like me
it has to unfurl underfoot to fulfil itself
but what does its wetness manifest:
a scorching sense of shame
or the heat of emotion?

The grass is also like me
As soon as it can raise its head
the lawnmower
obsessed with flattening it into velvet,
mows it down again.
How you strive and endeavour
to level woman down too!
But neither the earth's nor woman's
desire to manifest life dies.
Take my advice: the idea of making a footpath was a good one.

Those who cannot bear the scorching defeat of their courage
are grafted on to the earth.
That's how they make way for the mighty
but they are merely straw not grass
—the grass is really like me.
...

Kishwar Naheed Biography

Kishwar Naheed (Urdu: کشور ناہید), Sitara-e-Imtiaz is an Urdu poet from Pakistan known for her pioneering feminist poetry. Life and Family Born in 1940 in a Syed family of Bulandshahr, India, Kishwar was a witness to the violence (including rape and abduction of women) associated with partition, and herself moved with her family to Pakistan in 1949. Kishwar had to fight to receive an education at a time when women did not go to school; she studied at home and obtained a high school diploma through correspondence courses, but went on to receive a masters degree in Economics from Punjab University, Lahore. Kishwar was married to Poet Yousuf Kamran, raised two sons with him as a working woman, and then continued to support her family after his death in the Eighties. Works Kishwar Naheed held administrative roles in various national institutions. She was Director General of Pakistan National Council of the Arts before her retirement. She also edited a prestigious literary magazine Mahe naw and founded an organisation Hawwa (Eve) whose goal is to help women without an independent income become financially independent through cottage industries and selling handicrafts. Kishwar has published six collections of poems between 1969 and 1990. She also writes for children and for the daily Jang, a national newspaper. Her poetry has been translated into English and Spanish and her famous poem We Sinful Women gave its title to a ground breaking anthology of contemporary Urdu feminist poetry translated and edited by Rukhsana Ahmad published in London by The Women's Press in 1991. Awards Adamjee Prize of Literature on Lab-e-goya (1969) UNESCO Prize for Children's Literature on Dais Dais Ki Kahanian Best Translation award of Columbia University Mandela Prize (1997) Sitara-e-Imtiaz (2000))

The Best Poem Of Kishwar Naheed

The Grass Is Really Like Me

The grass is also like me
it has to unfurl underfoot to fulfil itself
but what does its wetness manifest:
a scorching sense of shame
or the heat of emotion?

The grass is also like me
As soon as it can raise its head
the lawnmower
obsessed with flattening it into velvet,
mows it down again.
How you strive and endeavour
to level woman down too!
But neither the earth's nor woman's
desire to manifest life dies.
Take my advice: the idea of making a footpath was a good one.

Those who cannot bear the scorching defeat of their courage
are grafted on to the earth.
That`s how they make way for the mighty
but they are merely straw not grass
-the grass is really like me.


[Translated from urdu to english by Rukhsana Ahmed]

Kishwar Naheed Comments

Azhar Chughtai 04 July 2014

Naheed is our country's best poet. She wrote very good books. I know her since more than 40 years from Lahore. While she was living in Krishan Nagar. She is our family friend. Wish you happy and blessed Ramazan. If possible, please send me miss call from Lahore. Best Regads, Azhar Chughtai 96-503494790

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