Jumbo Editorial Team
The versatility of 24-year-old Natasha Iqbal Jozi is reflected in her unique collection of paintings, prints, drawings and poetry representing teenage angst and despair which was launched on at the Pakistan Academy of Letters in Islamabad on July 17.
The book was recognized as a rarity in several ways with the merging of art with blank verse, the subject matter and the young age of the author which could serve as an inspiration to the young folks of the country to take advantage of their resources and talent to create something both personal and social.
The launching ceremony itself turned out to be quite an occasion with the presence of nearly 150 guests which included notable scholars and literary figures like Dr Fateh Mohammad Malik, Ejaz Rahim, Asim Akhtar and Farheen Chaudhry.
“I believe this great poet Natasha can bring change in the country through her pen, sharing the triumphs and troubles of young people in Pakistan,” Dr Fateh Mohammad Malik noted.
Ejaz Rahim went even farther in praising Natasha comparing her style to that of the legendary William Wordsworth because of its sensitive handling of content and diction.
Natasha’s father, Mohammad Iqbal Faheem, is also a writer and he was among the first people she showed her poetry to and it was due to his insistence that she considered publishing.
She has been writing poetry from the age of 11, having been encouraged from the renowned literary figures like Kishwer Naheed, Iftikhar Arif, Shahid Nadeem and Abbas Rizvi.
She aimed to keep creative control over the layout of the collection, which had contributions from NCA designer Kareem Mohammad, and though she said it stretched out the publication process, it was well worth the wait, as she is pleased with the end product.
“Writing poetry is something that I did naturally to cope with teenage angst and confusion. My poetry is a way to come to terms with the expansive dreams of a teenager set amidst the stark reality of limitations,” she observed.
“Having all these senior writers commend my written work is a very humbling experience, I hope the rest of my readers will be as receptive,” Natasha added.