Akbar’s ustad was Waheed, who was the shagird of Aatish. Akbar is the pioneer in the field of humour and sarcasm; before him there were only serious poets who occasionally had one or two ash’ar of that kind in their ghazals.
For Akbar humour was not only a style but an instrument to clearly understand social change.
Like Iqbal he was also a poet of the mind, they both used their poetry to awaken the sleeping masses, but there is a sharp contrast in their styles. Underneath the wave of humour, we find the poet’s pain – pain that this society
is changing for the worst, pain that Muslims are forgetting their true values. Whereas Iqbal went on the define the causes and the solutions to those problems, Akbar style went more on defining the causes.
Akbar Allahabadi is the most famous and prolific satirist in Urdu Poetry. He was a master of wit and humour.His humour was generally directed towards the so called
Desi Angrez Muslims of his era.He ridiculed the changing trends of society so perfectly that it earned him a title of Lisan ul Asr (The Tongue of the Times or
the Mouthpiece of the Age). The culture Akbar Allahabadi came from and the culture he saw during his childhood was in a shambles . Akbar ‘s heart pinched
every time when he noticed that the cultural traits of the indian society had been shaken and the values were being laughed at. He was sad and deeply hurt to
see the loss of self-respect in the young generation.Though he has been often criticized for being regressive and backward in his thought yet if you look at his time,
it is found that the young men coming out of the colleges that time were more british than the british themselves having no respect or love for the Indian culture.
Akbar was a strong defender of the cultural identity of Indian Society.His poetry has a charm that appeals to even those who are opposed to his views against
Women Education, Purdah etc. In any case it is always refreshing to read his Ashaar and Ghazal.
I quote few of them below:-
Hum aah bhee kartay hain toe hoe jaatay hain badnaam
Voh qatal bhee kartay hain to charcha nahin hota
yeH maujooda tareeqe raahi-e-mulk-e-adam hoNge
nai tahzeeb hogi, aur naye saamaaN baham hoNge
Khilaf e Shara’ Shaikh ThookTA bhi nahin
Magar Andhere Ujale mein chookTA bhi Nahin
naye unwaan say zeenat dikhaayegi haseeN apni
na aisa pech zulfoN meiN, na gesoo meiN yeH kHam hoNge
Sidhaarein sheikh kaaba ko, hum inglistaan dekhenge
Voh dekhen khuda ka ghar, hum khuda ki shaan dekhenge!
na to kHaatoonoN meiN rah jaayegi parde ki yeH paabandi
na ghooNghaT iss tarah say haajib-e-roo-e-sanam hoNge
chhadi uthaaii khamoshi se chal diye akbar
safar mein rakhte nahiin kaam tiim taam se
Jab main kahta hoon ke ya Allah mera haal dekh
Hukm hota hai ke apna naamaye aamaal dekh
Raqeebo ne rapat likhwai hai jaja ke thane mein
Ke akbar naam leta hai Khuda ka is zamaane mein
guzishta azmatoN kay tazkare bhi rah na jaayeNge
kitaaboN hi meiN dafan afsaana-e-jaah-o-hasham hoNge
Meri taqreer ka us mein yeh kuch qaboo nahin chalta
Jahan bandooq chalti hai wahan jaadu nahin chalta
tumheiN iss inqilaab-e-dahar ka kya gHam hai? ai AKBAR
bahut nazdeek haiN woH din na tum hoge, na hum hoNge
Hum aisi kul kitaabein qaabil-e-zabti samajhte hain
Ke jin ko padh ke ladke baap ko khabti samajhte hain
Akbar dabe nahin kisi sultaan ki fauj se
Lekin shaheed ho gaye biwi ki nauj se
Ya Main bataun ki marne ke bad kya hoga
Pulao khayengey ahbab ,fatiha hogaBaham Shab-i-wisal Ghalat Fahmiya’n huin
Mujhko Pari ka shubha hua unko bhoot ka
Nafs ke Tabe’ Hue , Eemaan rukhsat ho gaya
Wo Zanane mein gaye, Mehman rukhsat ho gayaUdhar Zulfon mein kanghi ho rahi hai, kham nikalta hai
Idhar ruk ruk ke khinch khinch ke hamara dam nikalta hai
Ilahi khair ho uljhan pe uljhan barhti jaati hai !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
Na unka Kham nikalta hai, na hamara dam nikalta hai
A characteristic of Akbar Allahabadi? writings was the inclusion of English words to accentuate his satire.chho.D ‘literature’ ko apanii, ‘history’ ko bhuul jaa
sheKh-o-masjid se ta’alluq tark kar, ‘school’ jaa
chaar din kii zi.ndagii hai, koft se kyaa faayadaa
khaa ‘double-roti’, ‘clerky’ kar, Khushii se phuul jaaham urduu ko arbii kyo.n na kare.n, hi.ndii ko vo bhaashaa kyo.n na kare.n
jaga.De ke liye aKhbaaro.n me.n, mazamuu.N taraashaa kyo.n na kare.n
aapas me.n adaavat kuchh bhii nahii.n, lekin ik akhaaraa qaayam hai
jab is se falak kaa dil bahale, ham log tamaashaa kyo.n na kare.n
Akbar Allahabadi SaaHeb ne apne baRe laRke Ishrat Husain ko ta’leem ke liYe London bhejaa thaa.
SaaHibzaadeh jab wahaaN se waapas aaYe to bilkul aNgrez ho chuke the aur apne waalidain tak se
GhairoN kaa saa sulook karne meN buraayee naheeN samajhte thai maayoosee aur raNj ke a’alam
meiN Akbar SaaHeb ne ek nazam likhee thee:
“Ishratee” ghar kee muHabbat kaa mazaa bhool gaYe
khaa ke London kee hawaa, e’hd-e-wafaa bhool gaYe
poNhche hotel meiN to Eid kee parwaa nah rahee
cake ko chakhh ke siwaiyooN kaa mazaa bhool gaYe
bhoole maaN-baap ko aGhyaar ke charchoN meN wahaaN
saayah-e-kufr paRaa, noor-e-Khudaa bhool gaYe
mom kee putliyoN par aisee tabeea’t pighlee
chaman-e-Hind kee pariyoN kee adaa bhool gaYe
kaise kaie dil-e-naadaaN ko dukhaayaa tum ne!
Khabar-e-faiSilah-e-roz-e-jazaa bhool gaYe!
buKhl hai ahl-e-watan se jo wafaa meN tum ko
kyaa buzurgoN kee woh sab jood-o-a’taa bhool gaYe?
naql-e-maGhrib kee taraNg aayee tumhaare dil meN
aur yeh nuktah miree aSl hai kyaa bhool gaYe
kyaa ta,a’jjub hai jo laRkoN ne bhulaayaa ghar ko
jab ke booRhe rawish-e-deen-e-Khudaa bhool gaYe