Every word has a soul: Irshad Kamil


“WORDS are nothing but expressions; EXPRESSIONS are nothing but emotions; EMOTIONS are nothing but feelings; FEELINGS are nothing but poetry; POETRY is nothing but soulful words and; every word has a SOUL” – with these opening thoughts Irshad Kamil, noted lyricist, poet, author, writer, strikes a chord with Smita Dwivedi. Irshad KamilAt a tender age of five, he started appreciating words and even created a poem. Well, these were the unnoticed spurts of the birth of the poet: Irshad Kamil. The name is unique…so, is Irshad his real name? To this, he replied with a smile, “I was born with this name only. It has nothing to do with me being a poet. It’s my mom’s blessings that helped me to get successful.”

Beginning his journey from a lower middle-class family of Malerkotla (Punjab), the youngest amongst the seven siblings, Irshad took admission in Punjab University (Chandigarh) and attained a Doctorate Degree in Hindi poetry. But what remained an unseen, silent companion through the years, holding him together, close to himself, was his love for writing.

“One has to be in love, feel love and celebrate love within him first then only he can write words that will touch every heart and I have my stories too.”
This love from the inception to the time it became Irshad’s Raison d’etre is a mystery for Irshad too. On asking him, how this eternal affair with words started, he shared, “That’s very difficult to answer and there is no particular date or time for any author or writer to start playing words game. It’s a gradual process and result of years of personal, emotional and inspiration journey that leads us to a point where we are now.”

From TV serials to films…

Irshad had a brief stint as a journalist and theatre, but life took him into its folds and he started writing for serials. But he was looking for something more and finally Irshad met Imtiaz Ali. First meeting with Imtiaz and a life-time bond was formed. Socha Na Tha was the first for both Imtiaz and Irshad.

Pure passion and original style began to weave itself through the pen of Irshad and be it any genre or style, Irshad proved his mettle. Though awards and accolades have been many, but the milestone was when he won himself the Filmfare Award for the song Ajj Din Chadheyya in the year 2010. Shabd, Jab We Met, Tum Milo Toh Sahi, Love Aaj Kal, Ajab Prem Ki Gajab Kahani, Once Upon A Time In Mumbai, Mere Brother Ki Dulhan, Mausam…Irshad’s songs are his imaginative revelations, yet to be decoded by all. But RockStar is the closest to the reflection of this Lyricist. Writing for Rockstar, Irshad effortlessly unleashed the real rebellion that he is… Rockstar was a catharsis…an experience of returning to oneself…reclaiming oneself.

From films to books…

Having a successful and satisfying career in Bollywood, writing a book was neither an impulsive nor an easy thing for him. It was a long yearning within him to write a book. As he shared, “Poetry is a free process, it is like flying in the sky. Writing songs too is similar to flying in the sky but within limits, as there are a number of factors to be taken into account. But there is more freedom when you are writing for yourself, than when you are working for someone else. For films, you have to keep the story and characters in mind, whereas while writing poetry, our emotions and thoughts flow without any constraints. I have been writing poetry since a long time. This being my first book, Ek Mahina Nazmon Ka, I have written it in a particular nazm meant for my young followers and fans and has the tagline Love’s Long Biography. As the title suggests, it is a book on love with a very contemporary feel to it.”

Earlier, one of his plays Bolti Deewarein was published and he had also written an analytical book on Hindi poetry – Samkaleen Kavita and recently Ek Mahina Nazmon Ka. The latter has become a bestseller within a month of release. On asking about the title he said, “I liked the phrase, hence I decided to give that as the title of the book. Besides, it is a very apt title as the book contains 31 long and short poems for each day of the month.”

Inspiration for love songs…

On asking about inspiration behind so many love songs and poems, he laughed and added, “One has to be in love, feel love and celebrate love within him first then only he can write words that will touch every heart and I have my stories too.”

Romancing with books…

On a concluding note, while commenting on importance of books, he shared, “For me books are as important as relationships. Like we have mother, father, brother or sister, we need to have a book to read as well. And having a physical book or e-book, I always prefer paper and ink. As for me, reading a physical book is like romancing with your girl friend or and e-books are like mannequins.”

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