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Abdul Hameed Adam
--: Biography of Abdul Hameed Adam :--


The Poet: Abdul Hameed Adam  (takhallus: Adam ) was born on 10 April 1910 in Punjab, India (in the part of Punjab which is in Pakistan now). Most of the researchers think that he was born in Talwandi Musa Khan  District Gujranwala   However, in one of his own articles published in the ghazal number   of the literary magazine Fanoon  from Lahore, he writes that: since my father was living in Lyallpur (now Faisalabad) in April 1910, my arrival (tashreef aawari   took place there (translation is KhamoshTamashais). He first used the takhallus Akhtar   then switched to Adam. He was first educated at Gujranwala. Then the family moved to Lahore   He was enrolled at Islamia High School   Bhati Gate   Lahore, where one of his schoolmates was Meerza (Mirza) Adeeb    a respected Urdu prose writer. According to Meerza Adeeb, young Abdul Hameed was a very good student and his knowledge of Islamiyat ا was excellent. When Abdul Hameed was 16 years old, his father passed away in 1926. One of his relatives (later his father in law) supported him and following his Matriculation (10th Grade), got him employed at the Military Account Department, Rawalpindi   in 1927/1928 as a clerk. Soon Abdul Hameed got married. In 1941 he passed the highest exam of his department with distinction. During the Second World War, he was sent to the Middle East, where he served in Iran   and Iraq   In Iraq he fell in love with an Iraqi girl, got married with her, and brought her with him back to India after the end of the War. He was posted to Pune (Poona, Maharashtra, India) where he became excessively involved with friends and started drinking. He would come home very late and disputes started with his Iraqi wife. The second wife soon returned to Iraq and thereafter Adam remained loyal to his first wife till her death in 1978/1979. Adam by then had himself become chronically ill and he passed away on 10 March 1981. 

He started writing poetry in his late teens (in late 1920's). It was a time when Akhtar Shirani   and Hafeez Jalladhari   had captivated people and nazams (poems) were more popular than ghazals. Naghma-e Zaar   a work of Hafeez Jallandhari with abhi to mein jawaan hoon   (uploaded here) had just been published. So it would be safe to assume that he was influenced by such poetry. Adam is a master of short meters and simplicity of ideas which touch the heart. He is himself characterized by his friends as a simple, straightforward, and honest man. I feel that every young man/woman who understands Urdu and has access to his poetry, loves it. He shunned publicity. He adeptly and fluently uses words like kharaabaat   adam   mey   khirad   hashr  (all coming to Urdu from Farsi/Arabic), etc. Farsi  terms are blended well. His verses are beautiful and full of musical rhythm. There are about four dozen published collections of his Urdu poetry. The first, Naqsh-e Davaam   was published in 1934. It consists mostly of nazams (as opposed to ghazals), and the style is mostly that of Hafeez Jallandhari, Akhtar Shirani, and Josh Malihabadi (all masters of Urdu poetry of that time). He later turned to ghazals. He also wrote masnawis (long poems) and qataats   (quatrains). His publications include Dastaan-e Heer (1959)   and a masnawi on Pakistans political history, Jhoot Such (1972)   Most of his works are collections of his ghazals. He was so adept in writing poetry that he could complete a ghazal in a few minutes. The last three works were published following his death. His philosophy is of being patient and content in life and not make difficult for others by being greedy. The suffering and sorrows of the have-nots are expressed very efficiently and in a personal manner.

(information mostly gathered from an article by Khawaja Muhammad Zakariyya    in Kulliyaat-e Adam   

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