Ishrat Afreen

(25 December 1956 / Karachi / Pakistan)

Introduction - Poem by Ishrat Afreen

Who am I
Don't scratch old wounds
Who am I
Not what you think I am.
I have grown up playing in the dust of my alleyways.
I learnt to fight for myself at an age when others dream dreams.I am that winsome bud which blooms on my forefather's graves
And must smilingly endure every punishment merely because it exists
I have no name
Call me by the name
Of the Great Ghalib who came before me
By the name of Mir.
Mir, who was hailed as the god of Poetics and verse
But who died in poverty.
The Great Ghalib
Who had to beg for his wine.

[Translated by Rukhsana Ahmad]

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Poem Submitted: Monday, April 9, 2012

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