Abu Dhabi: The rich legacy of Shaikh Zayed Bin Sultan Al Nahyan has been preserved in perpetuity in his poetry for all Emiratis and residents alike.
His poems reflect his humanitarian side, messages of unity, vision for development and local culture, scholars said.
As part of Year of Zayed, the Louvre Abu Dhabi organised a talk on ‘Humanity in the Poetry of the Late Shaikh Zayed’ at its auditorium on Wednesday evening where scholars from the Abu Dhabi Poetry Academy discussed Shaikh Zayed’s poetry related to human civilisation and peace.
Speaking at the event, Sultan Al Amimi, manager of Abu Dhabi Poetry Academy, said, “Poetry is key to take the civilisation of the country to great heights and reflect the great Emirati heritage and culture. Shaikh Zayed’s poetry is a legacy for the Emirati community and a guiding light for us and the upcoming generations.”
Shaikh Zayed’s poetry had local Emirati dialects, he said, adding, the Father of the Nation talked through his poems on many topics pertaining to the culture, society, emotional attachment with people, values and the country.
Al Amimi said, “Shaikh Zayed’s poems give great importance to women and their welfare, and it can be felt while reciting his poems.”
In a televised poetry session, Shaikh Zayed’s poetic works were compared to great Arab poet Al Mutanabbi.
Shaikh Zayed also promoted the Emirati heritage through his poems and encouraged other poets to use local flavours in their poetic works, Al Amimi said.
A number of poetic works were published in Arabic and some of them were translated into French language as well.
Whereas the translation of his works into other languages are under way, most of his poems are based on rhyming patterns maintaining the Emirati vocabulary and flavour.
Shaikh Zayed was a great lover of poetry, always supported poets and even allocated monthly remunerations for them, he said.
In the beginning of 1970s, Shaikh Zayed started writing his own poems and a number of selected poems were printed as well.
The Abu Dhabi Poetry Academy issued a book in 2010, ‘An Analytical Study of the Poetry of the Late Shaikh Zayed Bin Sultan Al Nahyan’, which was written by UAE researcher Mohammad Abdullah Noor Al Deen.
Love for nature
His poems highlight the political and international impacts of a volatile period of time and are characterised by his humanitarian side and reflect the simple desires of the human being who is fond of environmental beauty and the scenic natural world.
Dr Gassan Al Hassan, cultural adviser to the Abu Dhabi Poetry Academy, said: “Shaikh Zayed’s love for poetry can be gauged through his fondness for writing as he wrote more than 64 poems in less than a year at times.
“The great beauty of Shaikh Zayed’s poems is the modesty and respect for others. In most of his poetic works, he talked about ethical values, development of the country, local culture and its people giving utmost importance to women.”
Al Hassan added, “Shaikh Zayed talked about the developments of the country and developments which were under way at that time. He laid great importance to the unity, care for all people, Emirati culture and women, and these elements were reflected in all his works.”
“For example, Shaikh Zayed talked about clouds and how rain brings prosperity to the land and turns Al Dhafra, Baynounah, into a beautiful green land. He talked about animals of the land and their role in the local culture.”