Ustad Saaznawaz *Free

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    for Abir Bashir Bazaz

    As he weaves the ghazal
    the earth turns into water,

    gods dissolve in his tongue
    of slow fire and pure glass,

    each couplet forms a ripple
    over the heart of oblivion,

    he utters the word ashiqui:
    holy beads of love tremble,

    he utters the word ghamkhar:
    the neighbour averts his eyes,

    he utters the word Khusrau:
    Persian melts into Kashmiri,

    in his voice of pining lakes
    you hear the elegy of water,

    in his voice of humble sorrow
    you trace a darkness of blood.