Friday, November 8, 2013

Appreciation Dinner for Poetry Friends

 Saeed Qureshi

This was the logo of the dinner-cum Mushaira hosted by famous humanist Jinab Mike Ghouse on the evening of November 6 instant at the Funasia Asia cultural center. He had invited a select circle of his friends and well-wishers to this very enjoyable and culturally rich assemblage. This was the second Mushaira hosted by Mike Sahib. It was blazoned with such illustrious themes as pluralism, humanism and unity in diversity. The third Mushaira in the row is due in March next as was also announced this evening.

The proceedings lasted till midnight and came to a close on the group photo session. A sumptuous dinner was served before the start of the much waited Mushaira. The menu of dinner among other delicious items had an additional dish that we call “curry” in our Urdu or Hindi diction. It was very deliciously and diligently cooked. It was the most sought-after item of that splendid and enjoyable evening.

Those among poets who turned out to attend this unique evening were Yunus Ijaz, Shah Alam, Qazi Masood, Saeed Qureshi, Zohra Chishti, Dr Shamsa, Mrs. Nadir Durrani, Dr. Amir Suleman, Javed Rashid, Noor Amrohvi, Mr. S.K.Mittal and D.D. Maini. A local famous female poetess Naheed Shah was incidentally in Pakistan so his husband Mr. Ali read some the verses from her poetry. Zahid Akhtar Khanzada, a prominent journalist was also present on this auspicious occasion.

There was no ascending or descending order as is usually followed in the traditional Mushairas. According to that order, the poets are called to the podium by virtue of their seniority or fame in poetry. So such order starts from the junior most and ends at the senior most. But delightfully this strait jacket was set aside and that was the most alluring hallmark of this also a very enchanting Mushaira.

Besides poetry presentation there was a joke and tidbits’ session that injected a jovial, buoyant and rather piquant feature into the already vibrant environment of this pleasant company. Dr. Harbans Lal’s joke was outstanding and unleashed a roar of laughter among the audience.

I would mention the salient points of the speech of the host Mr. Mike Ghouse in which he thanked the guests for coming all the way to attend this function. He spoke at length describing the ordeals through which he had gone as a result of a sudden heart attack last July. He thanked Dr. Suleman for a timely arrangement for the surgery that was instrumental in saving his life. 

His next bypass surgery is schedule in November next year. The speakers one after another, complimented Mr. Mike for a new lease of life and prayed and hoped that like many survivors of heart attack, he would also live longer for many years.

Let me add that Mr Mike Ghouse is a reputed and celebrated participant in TV talk shows and a popular speaker in religious and social congregations and conventions from time to time. He is an embodiment of civility and humility and is soft spoken. His profile as given in his blogs is quite impressive and I have the honor to reproduce a part of that hereunder.

“Mike Ghouse is a speaker, thinker and a writer on pluralismpolitics, peace, IslamIsraelIndiainterfaith, and cohesion at work and social settings. He is committed to building a Cohesive America and offers pluralistic solutions on issues of the day at Mike has a strong presence on national and local TV, Radio and Print Media. 

He is a frequent guest on Sean Hannity show on Fox TV, and a commentator on national radio networks, he contributes weekly to the Texas Faith Column at Dallas Morning News, fortnightly at Huffington post, and several other periodicals across the world. His personal site indexes everything you want to know about him.”

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