Poetry And Development

The gardener cannot know the secrets of the garden

Until he has been bruised by the thorns that protect the flowers.


Because of the drought the peasant knows it has not rained on the mountains

Although he has never seen them nor ever will.


We meet, you and I, like a pair of lips and a wine glass

Tell me what will happen when the wine bottle will be empty?


You hesitate to walk with me for I cannot identify a destination

I am in search of answers and you of results.


Wisdom, the sages say, makes complexity simple

Yet simplicity is not accepted by the merchants of knowledge for it has no market.


Because of this perpetual conflict with myself

I seek relief in writing poetry


And poetry is more honest if not more meaningful than my work.

What a painful contradiction!


Karachi, July 1992



  1. Pardon me for clicking the ‘Poetry’ icon as soon as I received this website’s link, but I do not have an answer to why I chose to read this particular poem, ‘Poetry and Development’ first. Perhaps to say that your work cannot be trivialized, and no matter how profound the poetry, your work is more meaningful (I refer to your last lines in the poem).

    Posted December 24, 2012 at 11:33 am | PermalinkReply
  2. Maniza Naqvi

    They talk of results.
    They– who are in the business of framing
    Undesirous of questions.
    Disabled from seeking,
    Unable to take in
    Unaware of flourishings
    Seeing only what lies
    within them,
    In wells poisoned.
    On tracks beaten
    Unimagining stories,
    Undoing poems.

    Posted December 24, 2012 at 9:25 pm | PermalinkReply

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