Faiz Ahmad Faiz
Pakistani Urdu poet and author
Faiz Ahmad Faiz (13 February 1911 – 20 November 1984) was an Urdu Marxist, poet, and author. He was one of the most celebrated writers of the Urdu language, equally revered in both Pakistan and India.
- Human ingenuity, science and industry have made it possible to provide each one of us everything we need to be comfortable provided these boundless treasures of nature and production are not declared the property of a greedy few but are used for the benefit of all of humanity… However, this is only possible if the foundations of human society are based not on greed, exploitation and ownership but on justice, equality, freedom and the welfare of everyone… I believe that humanity which has never been defeated by its enemies will, after all, be successful; at long last, instead of wars, hatred and cruelty, the foundation of humankind will rest on the message of the great Persian poet Hafez Shiraz: ‘Every foundation you see is faulty, except that of Love, which is faultless.
- Speech at the Lenin Peace Prize ceremony, 1962, quoted by Zafar Ullah Poshni in ""My Jail Mate"
- I had to listen when my friends told me to wash my eyes with blood
Everything at once was tangled in blood —
each face, each idol, red everywhere.
Blood swept over the sun, washing away its gold.
The moon erupted with blood, its silver extinguished.
- quoted from Tariq Ali - The Clash of Fundamentalisms_ Crusades, Jihads and Modernity-Verso (2002)
- Last night your lost memory so came into the heart
As spring comes in the wilderness quietly,
As the zephyr moves slowly in deserts,
As rest comes without cause to a sick man.
- Poems by Faiz, translated by Victor Kiernan, 1971, p. 49
- Love, do not ask me for that love again.
Once I thought life, because you lived, a prize—
The time's pain nothing, you alone were pain;
Your beauty kept earth's springtime's from decay,
My universe held only your bright eyes—
If I won you, fate would be at my feet.
It was not true, all this, but only wishing;
Our world knows other torments than of love,
And other happiness than a fond embrace.
Dark curse of countless ages, savagery.
- Poems by Faiz, translated by Victor Kiernan, 1971, p. 65
- If ink and pen are snatched from me, shall I
Who have dipped my finger in my heart's blood complain—
Of if they seal my tongue, when I have made
A mouth of every round link of my chain?
- Poems by Faiz, translated by Victor Kiernan, 1971, p. 117