The valley of Kashmir is blessed by poets pertained to diverse subjects like English, Kashmiri, and Urdu etc .Among all, the Kashmiri glorious poet was Mehjoor .He has a place of honor among the poets of Kashmir. He is especially noted for two things. First, he introduced a new style into Kashmiri poetry. Second, he introduced a new thought into Kashmiri poetry. Mahjoor wrote poems of freedom and progress in Kashmiri. These songs awakened the sleeping Kashmiris. He came with a new voice and a new literary form. Mahjoor was a poet of love and communal harmony. He also wrote forceful poems about freedom.
Mahjoor's real name was Ghulam Ahmad. But as a poet, he adopted the pen name 'Mahjoor'. He was born in eighteen hundred and eighty-five in Metragam. He has written poetry in Persian and Urdu as well. Mahjoor worked as a land record official (patwari) in Kashmir. Along with his official duties, he used to write poetry in Kashmiri. Mahjoor had his first Kashmiri poem published in 1918. After this, he composed poetry only in Kashmiri. His songs became very popular. He wrote on such topics as love, communal harmony, and social reform, and also wrote on the plight of the Kashmiris. He wrote about youth, the flowers of Nishat Garden, a peasant girl, a gardener, the golden oriole, and a free Kashmir. At that time, such songs were unknown in Kashmiri poetry. It was Mahjoor who gave these to us.
Mahjoor was sixty-seven years old when he passed away in 1952. The death of Mahjoor was a great loss to both the Kashmiri language and Kashmiri poetry. But, Mahjoor's songs are still on the lips of every Kashmiri. Through these songs, his name will live forever.In 1914, Mahjoor started contributing his eternal verses in Kashmir and he for the first time wrote a lyric or a love poem in the style of Rasool Mir. He persisted with his mission of writing in Kashmiri and in the style of Wordsworth wrote many lyrics romantic in taste and with the depiction of nature as their background. One among these famous lyrics is ‘Bage Nishat ke Gulo’ the verses of which put an excitement in the hearts of the readers. The following eternal verses of the poem remind us about the richness and beauty of our land.
Bage- Nishat ke Gulo. Naz karan karan walo,
Sael Daluk ch wuch bahar- Bage- Nishat wa Shalimar
Mahjoor had a deep interest in the bounty of nature in Kashmir and his work depicts the scenic gardens, moors, forests, waterfalls, rivers, lush green fields and mountains as a source and means of conveying his heartfelt emotions and messages to awaken his countrymen to raise their voice against all kinds of injustices and ills perpetuated against them. He expresses his emotions like this,
Bulbulan Dup Gulls Hussan Chui Pur,
Keyha wanai, zew chai ne, su chui kasur
Through his verses in Kashmiri, Mahjoor offered a lot of fire and ignition to the freedom struggle during the barbarous Dogra regime. His poems gave impetus to the struggle and served as a clarion call to the masses to free their nation from the chains of slavery. He express his patriotic fervor in the poem “Walo Ho Bage-e-Wano” (Arise, O Gardener) and stresses upon his fellow countrymen to decorate their nation and land with flowers which symbolizing their apt traditions based on honesty ,truthfulness and dignity. He says,
Wala Ho Bage-wano Naw Baharukh Shan Paida kar,
Pholan Gull Gath Karan Bulbul Tututhi Shamane Paida Kar
In other beautiful poem, Gulshan Watan Chu Souni, Mahjoor expresses his love for his nation and breathes out the idea symbolically and that too with sincerity and pride that there is nothing dear to him than his nation and he wishes fervently it to prosper and become a dignified nation. This spirit of Mahjoor was appreciated and liked by Allama Iqbal and he had due regards for him for representing the sentiments of Kashmiris. Mahjoor pays glowing tributes to his nation in these lines,
Bulbul Wanan chu poshan Gulshan watan chu souni,
Andi Andi Safaid Sangar Deware Sange Mar Mar
Mahjoor also appeals to the nation to maintain communal harmony and not get divided on the basis of religion and community. He asks his nation to shun the path of strife with each other and adieu jealousy, hatred, animosity and remain united against the enemy and share love and affection with each other. He says,
Nai Traiu Mai Thaiu Panween
Puz Mohabat Bagruew paneween,
Dudh chu muslim hund chu shaker saaf saaf,
Dudh te bea shaker ralaew pane waeween
Mahjoor conveys his message through these famous verses in Mathew Arnold’s fashion who in his masterpiece poem “Dover Beach” also advises his contemporary nineteenth century society and people to come out of the melancholic situation which had entwined them and made them to suffer from bewilderment, contradictions and had disturbed their minds with confusion and chaos resulting in the bickering and squabbling among them. He suggests them that only love and affection with each other could provide them salvation and relief from the glum situation.
Mahjoor has deep faith in the power and supremacy of God and he also has firm belief in the blessings of Prophet Mohammad (SAW). He believes that salvation of a man from all kinds of woes and difficulties is possible only when one would devote himself to God and Prophet (SAW). He shows this spirit and devotion in these verses:
Sahibo sath chum me cheeni wath me aslich hawtem,
Kut kala roze be zan, zane hund mas chawtem
Mahjoor through his immortal verses teaches lessons about nature, love, peace, unity, faith in God, upholding of human values, uselessness of strife’s, jealousy, hatred, and he also touches the psyche of the people by awakening their conscience and advocates the concern of the poor, downtrodden, and suppressed workers. He invariably teaches his nation to learn to live with honor and dignity and fight for their lost identity and freedom. He tries to rejuvenate and strengthen the sentiments of the people to fight against injustice cruelty and anarchy. He due to his unique style of writing has earned an immortal place in the kashmiri literature. His poems reveal that he is a poet with lofty ideals and aspirations and bring home to one’s mind that his poetry derives power from the intensity and sincerity of his experiences and establish the fact that what comes from the heart goes to the heart and then take the form of solid and appealing artistic creations. He feels deeply but his emotions are calm and serene and it is not a turbulent passion. He is simple and writes with great variety and it is this distinct artistic quality that he has been able to write lyrics, songs, odes, elegies, prose, biography, novel, translations, and criticism. The literary contributions of Mahjoor clearly prove that as a writer he is so powerful and imaginative that he has been able to inspire his readers not only aesthetically, spiritually, morally and socially but also intellectually. The gamut and cosmos of Mahjoor’s creative art is so vast and infinite that there can be no end of research and any exploration in this direction shall be assumed as the greatest service to this nation and his prints have left a lot for the imminent poets.