Monday, 8 March 2010

Woman of Substance

Today is international Day for Women, and a perfect time to remember our Woman of substance Parveen Shakir(1952-1994) a poetess of extreme caliber, style, passion and talent. A woman petite and fragile in looks but like a rock in her principle stands towards life and the values she stood for. Living in a society where women were still fighting for their basic rights, her femininity was not a limiting factor when it came to express her point of view in poetry or prose. She was popular both with critics and public because of ingenuity of her words and the skill that tuned the right chords.

Her poetics works Khushboo(Fragrance)
Sudburg(Marsh Marigold)
Inkar(Refusal) is a journey of a young idealist girl to a woman of substance.

by Parveen Shakir

Listen, Girl, These moments are clouds:
You let them Pass and they are gone .
Soak up their moist touch .
Get drenched .
Don’t waste a single drop.
Listen, Downpours don’t remember streets ,
And sunshine Can’t read Road signs


  1. hhmmm...used to read Parveen Shakir alot...

    Dar Sahib very timely post....

    But I dont think that Parveen Shakir can be termed as WOMAN OF SUBSTANCE....she was rather the woman of NON SUBTANCES....hmm...

    She never in her writing claim any greed or lust for wordly things...all her writing shows her desire for true love....and we cant put the love in the substance criteria.

    I liked her because she was genuine in her writings. Never played the extra ordinary or super human/woman type.

    She asked what she looked for and she showed what she desire for....

    Thank you so mcuh for her poem in English translation....

    hmm...nice post.

  2. pahar din ki aziyat main kitni shiddat hai
    ujar rat ki tanhai kya qayamat hai
    shabon ki sust rawi ka tujhe bhi shikwa hai
    gam-e-firaq k qisse nishat-e-wasl ka zikr
    rawayatan hi sahi koi bat to karte...Parveen Shakir

  3. Ashfaq Hussain9 March 2010 at 19:13

    I apologize for writing on Dar sahib's behalf but since I have known him since childhood, I know exactly what he means when he writes that Parveen Shakir is a "Woman of substance" and I completely agree.

    A person with a strong character and belief, someone with a depth in personality, not shallow would be considered a person of substance and Parveen's unfortunately short existence defined just that....
    Wasim, it was indeed a very timely post and must admit, a good choice.


  4. Substance, a matter of connotation/linquistics...

    Thinking's fresh approach to language we often take for granted could turn into one of her surprising little short shorts and end up as you do above in exactly the same place as Akhtar!! I can imagine such will help us all smile! :) And how happy to have underlined from Hussain Sahib that Dar Sahib has always valued people of substance...people of strong character, belief and depth of person...

    Yes, I too found the post such a PERFECT one...and although my extending into more poetry below was written AFTER his...just had to learn more and had to fit it into an earlier saved space on my blogsite...

  5. I have not read much of her poetry so i canot take part in the debate whether she was the woman of substance or not.but all those pieces i got to learn by chance, i could find only sadness everywhere,so i agree with Thinking when she says that Perveen Shakir was in the search of true love..

    No doubt you hit on time!a very timely post indeed and so has spiced up the day even more:)

  6. hmmm....Hussain Sahib...thank you for correction....

    I never read the Dar Sahib's post on the perceptive you mentioned....hmm....really...I am totally agree now....

    Yes we can call Parveen Shakir a woman of substance....

    My thinking was about general worldly substances....yet we can characterized substances in different way too....

    Thank you so mcuh for correction...enlighten me.

  7. hmmmm....Dear Connie...

    Thanks alot. Not everytime my words out of heart are good

  8. Thank you very much all friends, Thinking,Ashfaq, Reebz and Connie. Parveen Shakir's poetry and personality was great source of inspiration for me and my friend Ashfaq in our college days, to us she was symbol of excellence.

  9. Dar Sahib,

    Do you mind once more telling me about that Sufi music you would say might be "prayer" music in a way? I can't find...yet like other inspirations, I am in need of such.

  10. I hope you like how I added your suggestion to my latest post?

    How are you?

  11. parveen shakir is the proud of pakistani women