Evening shadows: An anthology of beautiful poems


Imtiaz Ali
Evening shadows is the first anthology of poems by Dr Waheed Jatoi. Dr Waheed Jatoi is a prominent poet and litterateur from Sindh and is serving as Deputy Director at Sindhology. He holds a PhD in English literature. The topic of his doctoral thesis is An analysis and evaluation of mystical and philosophical aspects of G Allana's English Poetry. Besides this book he has authored 3 other books. Two of them are in Sindhi language, each on the topics of existentialism and poetry and the other one is, like Evening Shadows, a poetry collection titled “Sometimes”. Evening Shadows appeared for the first time in 2004. It contains short poems, closed form poems, free-verse and an opera titled “The portrait of
beloved". It reveals the poetic genius of Dr Waheed Jatoi. Jatoi sahib is one of those poets who have mastery of the English language and maturity of the thought. While describing the beauty of his beloved he puts in:“It was magic of her outlookThat made me write this book"Again, revealing his feelings for his beloved he says:Beetle moves around flowers Moth loves every lightMy worship is my beloved Who is above every sight! The poetry makes it clear that the poet is deeply in love with his beloved at the time of composing the following verse:Let me tell you beloved’s worth She is
Venus on the earthLife is difficult without her And is also useless birth In one of his free verse poem , he shadow!That flits before me when I back onto the SunIt quits my company When I face to  , my long shadow!How strange it is!That it projects from me But Alas! It is not mine At the time of difficulty The opera, which is titled as The portrait of beloved, contains the event that takes place at the court of a king. The king has a picture painted by an artist and he wants it to be evaluated by five people. Of them
there is each a poet, a painter, a sculptor, a businessman and a lover. The all describe it through their respective professional lenses. I feel an overwhelming compulsion to reproduce all of the verse but in order to keep this article brief, I write few of them here. For example he introduces the poet as:I am a poet son of bardWith the secrets in chest yardAnd concludes as:People say, “what are you worth?”You are matchless on the earth!The sculptor introduces himself asMy is quite a hard laborI am called, the
image makerOf the Kings and the sagesIn the return of daily wages In the end, the lover starts his assessment of the portrait as:I'm lover, an'see with mind So is Cupid painted blindThe lover pays tribute as:I may utter word of use You are but the Tenth Muse.It appears after the evaluation of the verses mentioned above that the poet has flair for the foreign language i.e English. He can easily describe scenes and feelings that are difficult to pin down. Thus, this is truly a thing to take pride in that the soil of Pakistan is producing such great poets. I hope and rather expect that Dr sahib will continue to
produce such quality poetry. This might sound irrelevant here but I would like to mention it that Jatoi Sahib composes the poetry with the same quality and flavour in his mother tongue. Moreover, he is a prominent fiction writer too, and has produced a number of short stories too.