In this thirteenth part of our 20-programme radio series – ILM-E-SHAYRI, Mehr-e-Alam Khan describes the Sālim (Perfect/ Unaltered) and Mazāhif (Catalectic) Arkān (Feet) of two Mufrad (Single) Bahoor (Metres) – Bahr-e-Mutaqārib and Bahr-e-Mutadārik – used in Urdu poetry. Whereas the basic Rukn (Foot) of Bahr-e-Mutaqārib is Fa’oo-lun, that of Bahr-e-Mutadārik is Fā-‘ilun.

In this part, Mehr-e-Alam Khan cites popular Ash’ār exemplifying the Mazāhif (Catalectic) as well as Sālim (Perfect/ Unaltered) forms of both Bahr-e-Mutaqārib and Bahr-e-Mutadārik. The examples cover both Musamman and Musaddas forms of the two Bahoor.

If a Rukn is repeated four times in a Misra’ (Hemistich/ one line of a Shé’r (Couplet) or eight times in a Shé’r, the Bahr (Metre) is called Musamman. And if it is repeated three times in a Misra’ or six times in a Shé’r, the Bahr is known as Musaddas.

The poets whose Ash’ār have been quoted, in this thirteenth part, to demonstrate Sālim and popular Mazāhif forms of Bahr-e-Mutaqārib and Bahr-e-Mutadārik include Mīr Taqī Mīr, Bahādurshāh Zafar, Ghālib, Ātish, Allāma Iqbal, Safī Lakhnawī, Fānī Badāyunī, Fanā Nizāmī Kānpurī, Fayyāz Hāshmī, Khalīlur Rahmān A’zamī, Shehryār, Bashīr Badr, Javed Akhtar, Farhat Shahzād, etc.

In the previous part, Sālim and Mazāhif forms of the other five Mufrad Bahoor (Single Metres) – Bahr-e-Hazaj, Bahr-e-Rajaz, Bahr-e-Ramal, Bahr-e-Kāmil and Bahr-e-Wāfir quoting suitable Ash’ār (Couplets) of renowned yesteryear- and contemporary Urdu poets were discussed.

Shephālī Frost sings a famous ghazal by Asrar-ul-Haq Majāz.

Ilm-e-Shayri ( علمِ شاعری इल्म-ए-शायरी ) is the first-ever radio series of programmes, based on the art and skills involved in writing Urdu poetry. The series, consisting of 20 radio programmes of more than 15 minutes’ duration each, answers some of the basic questions about the art of Urdu poetry.

Ilm-e-Shayri describes various patterns of rhythms and sounds in Urdu poetry, the study of which falls under Ilm-e-‘Arooz (Urdu Prosody). Based on a conversation between Mehr-e-Alam Khan, an Urdu poetry enthusiast and journalist, and Pervaiz Alam, Cine Ink, the series Ilm-e-Shayri gives a vivid description of various Bahrs(meters) used to write Urdu poetry, their popular forms, and specific patterns of arkaan(feet) that form a bahr as well as the origin and development of ‘Arooz.

The series, discussing  Zehaafaat (catalexis), any irregular changes in Bahr (meter), describes popular catalectic forms of various Bahrs. It also offers important principles for Taqtee’ (scansion) i.e.  examining the metrical feet (arkaan) of a verse (she’r).

The series includes a brief account of various forms of Urdu poetry, and important tips for writing poetry. It also provides answers to various queries you might have about writing Urdu poetry, as we go along.





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