Another interesting feature of this literary-cum-musical evening was the unveiling of the latest issue of a literary magazine, Adab-o-Saqafat International, published by the organization of the same name. The yearly magazine is edited by two sahib-diwan poets, Shakeel Sarosh and Sheikh Ijaz. Interestingly, Sheikh Ijaz travelled from Palm Beach, FL, to attend the event.
The latest issue of Adab-o-Saqafat International is dedicated to a prominent Pakistani poet Bedil Haidri. Sheikh Ijaz said that the magazine is distributed free of cost to Urdu lovers and “we are trying to publish it bi-yearly.” The magazine endeavors to maintain a high literary standard in choosing its material.
The current issue of the Adab-o-Saqafat International has four sections: literary criticism, poems, short stories and ghazals. Ghazals of 45 poets are included in an alphabetical order. I was delighted to know at least one of the ghazal poets, Baqi Ahmedpuri, included in the magazine. I know Baqi from Kuwait where I spent more than three decades in the print and electronic media.
Halqa-e-Adab-o-Saqafat plans to publish a collection of ghazals of the Urdu poets in diaspora. The title of the collection will be Urdu Ghazal. All Urdu diaspora poets are invited to submit their ghazals to Shakeel Sarosh (through email: ). Milwaukee-based Sarosh may be contacted on phone: 414-350-5594.
Awan-e-Urdu sponsors inauguration of five poetry books
The Awan-e-Urdu was established in 2004 and officially incorporated in March 2005 as a non-profit corporation. According to Ahmed Tanhaa, the primary goal of Awan-e-Urdu is to promote Urdu literature and to preserve Indo-Pak culture in Florida. Urdu is the fourth major world language which is spoken in India, Pakistan and Middle Eastern countries.
Every year Awan-e-Urdu invites poets, writers and artists including singers who travel from other cities and countries to perform at its events.
Awan-e-Urdu is the only organization in the entire state of Florida which has published poets and authors among its members, Tahaa pointed out. “We have launched at least five books of Urdu poets who currently reside or have resided in Central Florida. Last year we conducted three book launching events in Orlando. The first book launching event of 2010 was held in January.”
Awan-e-Urdu has an ambitious plan to start an Urdu language course curriculum through local private schools and create a section in public libraries devoted to the South-East Asian culture and languages.
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