Verse 87, Al A’raf

وَاِنۡ كَانَ طَآئِفَةٌ مِّنۡكُمۡ اٰمَنُوۡا بِالَّذِىۡۤ اُرۡسِلۡتُ بِهٖ وَطَآئِفَةٌ لَّمۡ يُؤۡمِنُوۡا فَاصۡبِرُوۡا حَتّٰى يَحۡكُمَ اللّٰهُ بَيۡنَنَا​ ۚ وَهُوَ خَيۡرُ الۡحٰكِمِيۡنَ‏


Wa-in kana ta-ifatun minkum amanoobillathee orsiltu bihi wata-ifatun lamyu/minoo fasbiroo hatta yahkumaAllahu baynana wahuwa khayru alhakimeen

Winners Announced !

On the first of February we gave you an image as the starting point and you sent us beautiful begettings of your imagination. Of all the sent entries we selected three winners, one from each language — English, Urdu and Hindi.

Click on each to read –

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That Lonely Tree

By Kritika Sharma

That lonely tree,
Gives the feeling of strength to me,
It has lost its leaves,
But is still standing straight,
In a barren land,
Just as a human being smiles,
With a broken heart,
The tree is watching the birds,
Flying above it,
But it doesn’t lose hope,
Just as human beings watch,
Others going ahead of them,
But still they try to cope,
Today’s scenario ,
This tree describes,
We should withstand every situation,
If we want to survive

Kritika Sharma, from Haryana, India, is a student of Microbial Biotechnology. An optimistic soul, she searches for happiness in everything.

पतझड़ का पीलापन

By Rekha Khanna

पीला रंग चढ़ा कर जोगी बन चला हूंँ
हरा था कभी अब मोक्ष के द्वार खड़ा हूंँ

लहराता था शाख पर जवानी के जोश में
अब बूढ़ा हो कर जीर्णोद्धार पर खड़ा हूंँ

हवा का हल्का सा झोंका भी लगे तेज आंधियों सा
छूट जाएगी शाख इसी सोच में शाख पर अड़ा हूंँ

लाल दिल बन शाख पर मैं कभी उगा था
हरे रंग की बेवफ़ाई से अब पीला पड़ा हूंँ

था कभी पेड़ की शान अब बोझ बना हूंँ
शाख ने भी किया तिरस्कार अब जमीं पर सड़ा हूंँ

पत्ते की जिंदगी और मौसम का अटूट रिश्ता है
पुनर्जन्म के आश्वासन पर पतझड़ की भेंट चढ़ा हूंँ


जिंदगी भी कभी कभी उस पत्ते की तरह हो जाती है जो धीरे-धीरे पीला पड़ते हुए अपने गिरने का इंतजार करता है। पतझड़ उसे, उसकी हरी-भरी शाख से जुदा होने की दस्तक देने लगता है।

यूं तो बहुत सी आंधियांँ और हवाओं के झंखड़ आए, पर वो शाख को मजबूती से पकड़ वहीं पर लगा रहा। पर पतझड़ जब आता है तो वही पत्ता ख़ुद-ब-ख़ुद शाख को छोड़ने का फैसला कर लेता है यां फिर ये कहूंँ कि शाख ही उसका साथ छोड़ देती है, ये कह कर कि अब तुम्हारा और बोझ सहन नहीं होता।

वो नन्हीं सी जान ये सुनकर न जाने किस एहसास को जीने लगती है और न जाने कौन सा ग़म उसे अंदर ही अंदर खाने लगता है कि वो धीरे धीरे अपना रंग बदल कर कुम्हलाने लगती है। पीलापन उस की रगो में समा कर उसे धीरे धीरे अपने वजूद को छोड़ने की सलाह देने लगता है और वो अपनी हरियाली, अपनी खुशियों से मुंँह मोड़ कर गिरने के इंतज़ार की घड़ियांँ गिनने लगती है।

जिंदगी भी ठीक उसी पत्ते के जैसी है। कभी कभी इसे भी पतझड़ का सामना करना पड़ता है। जब अपने, जो ठीक उसी शाख की तरह हैं, ये एहसास दिला देते हैं कि तुम बोझ से ज्यादा और कुछ नहीं और अब तुम्हारे भी झड़ने का वक्त आ गया है।

रिश्तों में भी पतझड़ की बहार एक बार ज़रूर आती है। तब जितना भी मजबूती से पकड़ने की कोशिश कर लो, हरी-भरी शाख का साथ छूट ही जाता है। कभी कभी पनपने से पहले ही मुरझा कर गिरना पड़ जाता है।

पर कभी जिंदगी के पतझड़ का पीलापन आपने देखा है? शायद हांँ या शायद नहीं। इसका जवाब वो बख़ूबी दे सकते हैं जिन्होंने इस पतझड़ का सामना किया हो या शायद कर रहें हों।

प्रकृति के रंग सिर्फ प्रकृति ही नहीं हम इंसान भी देखते हैं। दो दिल मिले तो बहार आई। आपसी झगड़ों से रिश्ते टूटे तो पतझड़ आया। जब मनमुटाव के कारण बातचीत बंद हुई तो सर्द मौसम की तरह ही दिल भी सर्द हो गया ।
कहते हैं ना break the ice and talk once again हांँ बस वही बर्फ़ जम जाती है और दूरियांँ दिलों में घर कर जाती हैं।

यूं तो पतझड़ ये भी संदेश लाता है कि नई कोंपलों के खिलने का आगाज़ हो रहा है और नया जीवन प्रकृति के रंगों को जीना चाहता है, हर मौसम के अनुभव को अपने में समा लेना चाहता है।‌ फिर धीरे धीरे शाख पर लाल दिल के रूप में नया जीवन उभरता है और फिर हरे रंग की खुशियों के दामन को ओढ़ कर लहराने लगता है। और एक बार फिर वो कालचक्र की कठपुतली बन उसके अनकहे इशारों पर नाचने लगता है।

यही जीवन है और यही कालचक्र है जो ये कहता है —

गर आई है हरियाली तो पीलापन भी उसके पीछे पीछे जरूर आएगा

शायद पीले रंग को हरे रंग से इश्क है जो उसे ढूंँढते-ढूंँढते कई मौसमों का सामना करते हुए उस तक बेखौफ पहुंँच ही जाता है।

Rekha Khanna tries to mold feelings into words, each time pouring a new passion on the paper.

ظالِمانَہ اِنْسانِیَت

By Ataullah Kadak

سوکھی شاخوں پر پرِندے نہیں بیٹھا کرتے
جہاں دیکھو وہاں بس درِندے ہی ہیں نظر آتے

بنجر زمین پر اب کوئی گھانس تک نہیں اُگتی
بس معصوموں کی چیخیں کانوں میں ہیں چُبھتی

در در بھٹکتے ہیں بس مارے پھرتے
مُحبّت کے سائے اب کہیں نہیں دِکھتے

پانی مانگو تو زہر پیالوں میں ہیں بھرتے
یہاں اپنے کم اپنوں میں سانپ زیادہ بستے

یہاں کوئی محفوظ نہیں جان لے اے عطا
خود مخلوق یہاں خدا کے داوے ہیں کرتے

Baugmaree

By Toru Dutt

A sea of foliage girds our garden round,
But not a sea of dull unvaried green,
Sharp contrasts of all colours here are seen;
The light-green graceful tamarinds abound
Amid the mangoe clumps of green profound,
And palms arise, like pillars gray, between;
And o’er the quiet pools the seemuls lean,
Red,—red, and startling like a trumpet’s sound
But nothing can be lovelier than the ranges
Of bamboos to the eastward, when the moon
Looks through their gaps, and the white lotus changes
Into a cup of silver. One might swoon
Drunken with beauty then, or gaze and gaze
On a primeval Eden, in amaze.

Leave This Chanting

Gitanjali (Poem Number 11)

By Rabindranath Tagore

Leave this chanting and singing and telling of beads! Whom dost thou worship in this lonely dark corner of a temple with doors all shut? Open thine eyes and see thy God is not before thee!

He is there where the tiller is tilling the hard ground and where the path-maker is breaking stones. He is with them in sun and in shower, and his garment is covered with dust. Put off thy holy mantle and even like him come down on the dusty soil!

Deliverance? Where is this deliverance to be found? Our master himself has joyfully taken upon him the bonds of creation; he is bound with us all forever.

Come out of thy meditations and leave aside thy flowers and incense! What harm is there if thy clothes become tattered and stained? Meet him and stand by him in toil and in sweat of thy brow.

The Flute-Player Of Brindaban

By Sarojini Naidu

Why didst thou play thy matchless flute
‘Neath the Kadamba tree,
And wound my idly dreaming heart
With poignant melody,
So where thou goest I must go
My flute-player with thee?

Still must I like a homeless bird
Wander, forsaking all
The earthly loves and worldly lures
That held my life in thrall,
And follow, follow, answering
Thy magical flute-call.

To Indra’s golden-flowering groves
Where streams immortal flow,
Or to sad Yama’s silent Courts
Engulfed in lampless woe,
Where’er thy subtle flute I hear
Beloved I must go!

No peril of the deep or height
Shall daunt my winged foot;
No fear of time-unconquered space,
Or light untravelled route,
Impede my heart that pants to drain
The nectar of thy flute!

Brewing Stories

It is Saturday again and here we are with a new starting line.

BREWING STORIES

— a story prompt where we give you an starting line and you brew a story of it.

Submission Guidelines

  • We accept only original and unpublished work.
  • Use the given starting line and write in continuation to brew a beautiful story.
  • The starting line will be posted each Saturday.
  • There is no submission deadline.
  • For Brewing Stories is a honing prompt and not a challenge, there will be no winners, no losers.
  • We will publish all the entries which will captivate our minds and hearts.

ENTRIES OFFENSIVE IN LANGUAGE OR SENTIMENT WILL NOT BE PUBLISHED

This week’s starting line is :

It was a usual house that I rented for my family, but something felt very unusual . . .

Submission Form

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Verse 86, Al A’raf

وَلَا تَقۡعُدُوۡا بِكُلِّ صِرَاطٍ تُوۡعِدُوۡنَ وَتَصُدُّوۡنَ عَنۡ سَبِيۡلِ اللّٰهِ مَنۡ اٰمَنَ بِهٖ وَتَبۡغُوۡنَهَا عِوَجًا​ ۚ وَاذۡكُرُوۡۤا اِذۡ كُنۡتُمۡ قَلِيۡلًا فَكَثَّرَكُمۡ​وَانْظُرُوۡا كَيۡفَ كَانَ عَاقِبَةُ الۡمُفۡسِدِيۡنَ‏


Wala taqAAudoo bikulli siratintooAAidoona watasuddoona AAan sabeeli Allahi man amanabihi watabghoonaha AAiwajan wathkuroo ithkuntum qaleelan fakaththarakum wanthurookayfa kana AAaqibatu almufsideen

I Was Falling Down

By Neha Afzaal

I was falling down,
Just like the autumn leaves.
Then you gave me hand and picked me up,
And I got the hope to not give up.

The sky was absorbing the shades of orange,
The field was getting dry and dead,
The lively trees were standing unaided,
The air was getting more restrained.

I was feeling empty,
Just like an autumn tree without it’s leaves,
Then you came and filled the colours of love,
So I could feel the true love.

Neha Afzaal is a linguist.

What Makes Man A Human ?

By Mixbah Zaffar

What makes man a human ?
Not the avarice, not the vices.
I fancy if it’s the Pious Gene
Nicest, that come from nerves
As a lonely cloud I gallivant
In the darkest phase of livin’
The soul hinged with the fork.
In my breath, I inhale the nice
The seed of plight I sow on
The bays of my dreadful heart.
Glee in the waves of wind
Wavin’ along the city of images,
I sight the placard of misery
Marked with the name of me.
A sound cracked, behind the soul
Swayed my mettle; asked me,
“You wanna go home?” Fiercely
Woke up in fears, eyes of tears
Relied on my Gallivant attitude
Things I couldn’t understand clear
That sound strikes my continuation
Traits, What makes man a human ?

Mixbah Zaffar, from Jammu and Kashmir, India, is a class XII student who loves to write.
Instagram Handle – @mixbah_13

Halt

By Shireen

Life stopped at the halt where you went away… Far away… To yonder shores…

Saahil was the love of my life, the essence behind my smile, the twinkle and the glow to my being. In short, he was the heartbeat of my life!
We were on the verge of being engaged when Saahil was transferred to U.S. After that we just grew distant. My love grew bitter, it hurt . My heart wounded.
I just grew in my career. Love had no place in my life anymore.
My company was taken up by a foreign company in collaboration with another. It was the first day after the take over. I went in a bit early as I was heading the HR. As I walked in, my team co ordinator signaled me to come and meet the MD.
I walked in and was opening my mouth to wish, when the earth started spinning. I felt my solar plexus being punched hard. My heart seemed to be jumping at a crazy breakneck speed. But I quickly regained my composure. Standing across the room was none other than “Saahil”.
Looked like my life again was going to halt.

Shireen, an educator, blogger, a nature and yoga enthusiast, enjoys the flow of her thoughts on paper.

Background, Casually

By Nissim Ezekiel

I

A poet-rascal-clown was born,
The frightened child who would not eat
Or sleep, a boy of meager bone.
He never learned to fly a kite,
His borrowed top refused to spin.

I went to Roman Catholic school,
A mugging Jew among the wolves.
They told me I had killed the Christ,
That year I won the scripture prize.
A Muslim sportsman boxed my ears.

I grew in terror of the strong
But undernourished Hindu lads,
Their prepositions always wrong,
Repelled me by passivity.
One noisy day I used a knife.

At home on Friday nights the prayers
Were said. My morals had declined.
I heard of Yoga and of Zen.
Could I, perhaps, be rabbi-saint?
The more I searched, the less I found.

Twenty two: time to go abroad.
First, the decision, then a friend
To pay the fare. Philosophy,
Poverty and Poetry, three
Companions shared my basement room.

II

The London seasons passed me by.
I lay in bed two years alone,
And then a Woman came to tell
My willing ears I was the Son
Of Man. I knew that I had failed

In everything, a bitter thought.
So, in an English cargo-ship
Taking French guns and mortar shells
To Indo-China, scrubbed the decks,
And learned to laugh again at home.

How to feel it home, was the point.
Some reading had been done, but what
Had I observed, except my own
Exasperation? All Hindus are
Like that, my father used to say,

When someone talked too loudly, or
Knocked at the door like the Devil.
They hawked and spat. They sprawled around.
I prepared for the worst. Married,
Changed jobs, and saw myself a fool.

The song of my experience sung,
I knew that all was yet to sing.
My ancestors, among the castes,
Were aliens crushing seed for bread
(The hooded bullock made his rounds).

III

One among them fought and taught,
A Major bearing British arms.
He told my father sad stories
Of the Boer War. I dreamed that
Fierce men had bound my feet and hands.
The later dreams were all of words.

I did not know that words betray
But let the poems come, and lost
That grip on things the worldly prize.
I would not suffer that again.

I look about me now, and try
To formulate a plainer view:
The wise survive and serve–to play
The fool, to cash in on
The inner and the outer storms.

The Indian landscape sears my eyes.
I have become a part of it
To be observed by foreigners.
They say that I am singular,
Their letters overstate the case.

I have made my commitments now.
This is one: to stay where I am,
As others choose to give themselves
In some remote and backward place.
My backward place is where I am.

Break, Break, Break

By Alfred Lord Tennyson

Break, break, break,
On thy cold gray stones, O Sea!
And I would that my tongue could utter
The thoughts that arise in me.

O, well for the fisherman’s boy,
That he shouts with his sister at play!
O, well for the sailor lad,
That he sings in his boat on the bay!

And the stately ships go on
To their haven under the hill;
But O for the touch of a vanish’d hand,
And the sound of a voice that is still!

Break, break, break
At the foot of thy crags, O Sea!
But the tender grace of a day that is dead
Will never come back to me.