What Is The Best Urdu Poetry?

by Amy

Urdu poetry stands as a testament to the rich cultural heritage and literary tradition of the Indian subcontinent. Originating from the fusion of Persian, Arabic, and Indian literary traditions, Urdu poetry has evolved over centuries to become one of the most revered forms of artistic expression in South Asia and beyond. With its melodious language, intricate rhyme schemes, and profound thematic exploration, Urdu poetry continues to captivate audiences with its timeless beauty and universal appeal. So, what is the best urdu poetry?

Criteria for Selection

Determining the best Urdu poetry requires careful consideration of various factors that contribute to its aesthetic and cultural significance. Some key criteria used to evaluate Urdu poetry include:

Beauty of Language: The elegance, richness, and musicality of the Urdu language used in the poetry, including its vocabulary, syntax, and imagery.

Depth of Emotion: The ability of the poetry to evoke powerful emotions and resonate with the reader on a deep emotional level, touching upon universal themes of love, longing, loss, and spirituality.

Thematic Richness: The diversity and complexity of themes explored in the poetry, ranging from romantic love and mysticism to social justice and existential questioning.

Enduring Relevance: The lasting impact and relevance of the poetry across generations, as evidenced by its continued popularity, influence on subsequent poets, and resonance with contemporary readers.

Recommended Urdu Poets and Poems

Mirza Ghalib (1797-1869)

Brief Biographical Information: Mirza Ghalib, often referred to as the “Greatest Urdu Poet,” was a master of the ghazal form and one of the most influential figures in Urdu literature.

Major Works: Ghalib’s poetry is characterized by its profound philosophical insights, exquisite language, and mastery of the ghazal form. His ghazals explore themes of love, loss, existentialism, and the complexities of human experience.

Sample Poem (“Ghazal 1”):

“Hazaaron khwahishen aisi ke har khwahish pe dam nikle
Bohat niklay mere armaan, lekin phir bhi kam nikle”

Allama Iqbal (1877-1938)

Brief Biographical Information: Allama Iqbal, also known as the “Poet of the East,” was a philosopher, poet, and politician who played a pivotal role in the Pakistan Movement.

Major Works: Iqbal’s poetry is marked by its revolutionary zeal, spiritual fervor, and vision for the revival of the Muslim world. His poems, particularly his Persian works, explore themes of self-discovery, national identity, and social justice.

Sample Poem (“Shikwa”):

“Khuda ke waaste parda na kaabe se utha zaalim
Kahiin aisa na ho yaan bhi wahi kaafir sanam nikle”

Faiz Ahmed Faiz (1911-1984)

Brief Biographical Information: Faiz Ahmed Faiz was a leading Urdu poet and intellectual, known for his revolutionary poetry and activism for social justice.

Major Works: Faiz’s poetry is characterized by its revolutionary fervor, humanism, and lyrical beauty. His poems reflect his commitment to the ideals of freedom, equality, and democracy, and often speak truth to power.

Sample Poem (“Hum Dekhenge”):

“Lazim hai ke hum bhi dekhenge
Woh din ke jis ka wada hai”

See also: Who Is The Best Poet For Beginners?


The poets and poems highlighted above represent just a glimpse of the vast treasure trove of Urdu poetry. Each poet brings a unique voice, perspective, and vision to the realm of Urdu literature, enriching it with their creativity, passion, and insight. Through their timeless verses, these poets continue to inspire, uplift, and enlighten readers, transcending linguistic and cultural boundaries to touch the hearts and minds of audiences around the world.

FAQs About Urdu Poetry

1. Who is No 1 Urdu poet?

Identifying the “number 1” Urdu poet is subjective and can vary based on personal preferences and cultural influences. However, some poets are widely revered for their contributions to Urdu literature. Mirza Ghalib, Allama Iqbal, and Faiz Ahmed Faiz are often cited as among the greatest Urdu poets due to their profound impact on the genre and enduring popularity among readers.

2. Who is the number 1 poet in Pakistan?

Again, determining the “number 1” poet in Pakistan is subjective and can depend on individual perspectives. However, poets like Allama Iqbal, Faiz Ahmed Faiz, and Ahmad Faraz are highly esteemed in Pakistan for their significant contributions to Urdu poetry and their influence on Pakistani culture and identity.

3. Which is the best site for Urdu poetry?

There are several reputable websites dedicated to Urdu poetry, each offering a wide range of poems, ghazals, and shayari for enthusiasts to explore. Some popular sites include Rekhta, UrduPoint, and Poetry One. These platforms provide a vast collection of Urdu poetry from renowned poets as well as emerging voices, allowing readers to discover, read, and share their favorite works.

4. Which is the largest Urdu poem?

The term “largest” can be interpreted in various ways when referring to Urdu poetry. It could refer to the length of a single poem or the cumulative body of work of a particular poet. One example of a lengthy Urdu poem is “Shahnama-e-Islam” by Allama Iqbal, which spans multiple volumes and explores the history and philosophy of Islam. However, in terms of sheer volume of poetry, the collected works of poets like Mir Taqi Mir, Mirza Ghalib, and Allama Iqbal would be considered extensive and comprehensive.

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