Aali Jee's Poetic Framework
Professor Dr. Saadat Saeed
Chair Ankara University Turkey
What is special in Jamil-ud-Din Aali's poetry? Nothing else but its
pensive outlook! The effervescent brook of his passion has earned him a
celebrated rank in the history of modem Urdu poetry.
His long and stirring dramatic poem "Insaan" is based on profound
probing into the meaning of man's life on earth. Its concrete dimensions
doubtlessly belong to his ethical, social and metaphysical experiences.
This poem could be called an imaginary dialogue between his own self and
the objective world. In this poem, the character named Borrah (old man)
is the symbol of poet's own rational self.
Jee artistically is fully equipped with the modern techniques of poetry
writing. He has depicted his universal and local experiences in various
disciplines of knowledge as varied as history, anthropology, philosophy,
politics, art and literature. We can find essentials of his life
experiences in his poetic collections named "Ghazlain, Dohay, Geet" and
Aali Jee`s insight of times is fully based on cognitive approach,
humanitarian passion, patriotic sensibility and a wary observation.
His love for life and humanity at large is above question. The strictly
limited domain of traditional poetic expressions did not suit with the
artistic experiences which he wanted to portray. So he looked for new
avenues of creative discourse and struck upon novel strands in Ghazal.
Again, he developed an essentially different approach in exploiting the
potential of Doha, an almost forgotten genre as a living instrument of
poetic expression. The existence of such experiences and reflections can
be acknowledged without the fear of refutation which cannot be reduced
into rather stringent limits of Ghazal. In order to reflect his
individual being, Aali Jee chose the genre of Doha and free verse
besides breaking new grounds in Ghazal writing. Despite honoring the
primal role of prosody and rhyme in poetry, Aali Jee has employed these
artistic tools in a highly individual way.
Aali Jee has the courage to use new words and phrases in his poetry. He
accepts the principles of new linguistic formations and emphasizes upon
communicative expressions. His love for music has forced him to shape up
a fresh style which coordinates with his, as it were, athletic
craftsmanship. The over-riding passion behind his toil is to reach and
feel the soul of his reader.
Herbert Read in his famous opus, The Meaning of Art" writes,
"Only the composer of music is perfectly free to create a work of art
from his own consciousness and with no other aim than to please".
The musical expressions in Aali jee's poetry has augmented the force of
his thought and emotions. His interest in music has given him freedom to
utilize eloquently the internal and external rhythms of poetry. Aali jee
belongs to that type of poets known for melodious bent of temperament.
Aali holds an expansive outlook of life and a cursory analysis of his
pensiveness indicates that his sensibility is rooted in his
consciousness. To under-rate the instinctive and imaginative
requirements of man is not palatable to Aali Jee. He has picked up the
intricate story of contemporary times and garbed it in his masterly
technique to win the hearts of Urdu poetry lovers all over
Sub-continent; nay over all continents.
his poems myriad cities and places demonstrate his strong emotional
affiliation with different imageries as well as peculiar social fabrics.
In this context, his love for his friends and even people not directly
known to him, seems to have substantiated his art. Reading his ghazals
and poems, a reader truly feels that Aali praises the loveliness of all
the countries and cities even if his first love remains rooted in his
In his columns and travelogues at first place we are struck by
various issues of ethical, social, economic, international, national,
metaphysical and literary importance, bringing forth the real situations
of contemporary life. His artistic and biting satires on the prevailing
human situations in different lands are highly effective in exposing
present-day contradictions. We develop an instant feeling that the
writer is burning with hatred for feudalism, capitalism, the misuse of
industrial and scientific chains, dictatorial rule, individual and
collective sufferings and national degeneration. Aali Jee himself has
served various departments as a bureaucrat or an administrator. However,
in his poetry, his criticism of this queer lot, better known as
bureaucrats, is charged with disdain. He is fully aware of inherent
intricacies of this class.
attacks the bureaucratic ways fiercely. He tells the story of Chutt
Bhyas (riff raff) in their own language. He thinks that this class is
itself suffering from a strange disorder. The luxurious lives led by the
officers are a major source of their alienation from the serious
conditions of lower classes. Aali Jee also criticizes national leaders
who are engaged in collecting money and fulfilling their interests in
the name of national welfare.
Aali Jee himself is a main spokesman of freedom of expression and
desires from other writers to write according of the dictates of their
portraying the feminine beauty, Aali has employed concrete sensuous
imagery. In old literature, the poets having a partiality for Hindi
modes of expressions wrote in the form of Doha, Amir Khusro is the
foremost among the poets who used the potential of this form to the
choosing Doha to reflect the socio-political scenario of his age, Aali
has added a new dimension to its mystic mood. In his poetry, Aali Jee
has resurrected countless obsolete words. Aali suggests the search for
houses lilting with love and a sky with drizzles of indulgence for the
down-trodden. He hates the society where persons of rank have gone deaf
and the common man speechless. Aali jee doesn't believe in withdrawing
from the developments taking place in the society; he would rather face
the changing with an inherent belief in the ultimate victory of love and
justice. Aali is alive to the fact that our nation is desperately in
search of its intellectual guru. He feels his responsibility. His poetic
collection, Jeevay Jeevay Pakistan, contains some of the most beautiful
national songs written during the last two and a half decades.
a society where the new born cultural popularization and the threats
inherent in the autocratic imposition of certain ideas are creating
confusion, only a towering intellectual with global perception can lead
towards the salvation.
Aali Jee wants to see Pakistan prosperous. Therefore, he is yearning for
the industrial development. He is against linguistic and cultural
Aali Jee writes :
Someone calls me Nank's follower, another labels Kabir`s slave.
This is only for
me, there is nothing to my credit.
have served, Sur, Kabir, Bahari, Mira, Rehman and Tulsi Das
my own waft, but my soul is still thirsty