Yesterday (January 1) marked the 112th birth anniversary of Polli Kobi (folk poet), Jasimuddin.
Jasimuddin was a Bengali poet, songwriter, prose writer and folklore collector. He is commonly known as Polli Kobi, for his superb rendition of Bengali folklore in his literary works. His poetry is a demonstration to the simple, timeless appeal of rural Bengal and folk life. His poetic rhythms are drawn from folk elements - easy on the ear and quick to embed themselves in the memory. He was also a writer of fine prose - fluent, witty, and expressive.
Jasimuddin was born on January 1, 1903 at Tambulkhana in Faridpur. He completed his Bachelors and Masters in Bangla from the University of Calcutta in 1929 and 1931 respectively. In 1938 he joined the University of Dhaka as lecturer. He left the university in 1944 to join the Department of Information and Broadcasting. He continued working there, until his retirement as Deputy Director in 1962.
The poet started writing poems at an early age. As a college student, he wrote the famous poem "Kabar". The poem was included in the Bengali textbook while he was still a student of Calcutta University.
His first book of verse, "Rakhali", was published in 1927. Other notable books by him include "Nakshi Kanthar Math" (1929); "Shojan Badiyar Ghat" (1933); "Rangila Nayer Majhi" (1935); "Matir Kanna" (1951); "Suchayani" (1961); "Padma Nadir Deshe" (1969) and "Beder Meye" (1951). He edited two books on folk music: "Jari Gaan" (1968) and "Murshidi Gaan" (1977).
Jasimuddin died in Dhaka in 1976 and was laid to rest in his village.