Ham Ke Thehare Ajnabi …

Faiz Ahmed Faiz, is better known for his revolutionary fervor and socialist ideal. He can almost be considered the strongest amongst the socialistic revolutionary voices of Pakistan. This was not unusual for poets of his time. We had the likes of Nagarjun in India.

What is quite surprising about Faiz, or may be not, is that he has a wonderful, soft and romantic side too. We know that Faiz fell in love with and married a British woman named Alys. She is considered by many to have molded the personality and expression of Faiz. Talking about this soft side of Faiz, two gazals come to my mind, “Tum mere paas raho” (which I’ll surely post some day), and the one posted below. Its hard to say much about Faiz’s emotional state or situation in life at the time of writing, but he by far captured the awkwordness of certain situations as beautifully as anyone could. Enjoy!!

हम के ठहरे अजनबी कितनी मदारातों के बाद
अब बनेंगे आशना कितनी मुलाक़ातों के बाद

[मदारात == hospitality, expression of affection]
[आशना == lovers]

कब नज़र मे आएगी बेदाग सब्ज़े की बहार
खून के धब्बे धुलेंगे कितनी बरसातों के बाद

[बेदाग == clear, unadulterated]
[सब्ज़े की बहार == green and fresh season of spring]

दिल तो चाहा पर शिक़स्त-ए-दिल ने मोहलत हि न दी
कुछ गिले शिकवे भी कर लेते मुनाजातों के बाद

[शिक़स्त-ए-दिल == heart’s defeat (heart getting out of control because of extreme affection)]
[गिले शिकवे == cribs, complaints]
[मुनाजातों == affectionate prayers]

फ़िर बहुत बेदर्द लम्हे खत्म-ए-दर्द-ए-इश्क़ के
थीं बहुत बेमेहर सुबहें मेहरबाँ रातों के बाद

[खत्म-ए-दर्द-ए-इश्क़ == end of love’s pain]
[बेमेहर == ufriendly, unforgiving, not helpful, opposite of मेहरबाँ]

उनसे जो कहने गए थे फ़ैज़ जान सदक़ा किये
अनकही ही रह गई वह बात सब बातों के बाद

[जान सदक़ा किये == with letting life for sacrifice]
[अनकही == unsaid]

Two very different renditions of the gazal are available:

  • By Nayyara Noor, which you can listen to here. Video of one of the live shows is here.
  • By Shubha Mudgal, which you can find here. I couldn’t get you guys a free link. But this version is good too.

Ghalib again

Posting Ghalib after quite sometime today. It is a quite well known ghazal, and represents a state of mind which I relate to quite often. Especially after meeting a few people. 🙂

बाज़ीचा-ए-अतफ़ाल है दुनिया मेरे आगे,
होता है शब-ओ-रोज़ तमाशा मेरे आगे।

[बाज़ीचा-ए-अतफ़ाल == child’s play] [शब-ओ-रोज़ == day and night]

होता है निहाँ गर्द मे सहरा मेरे होते,
घिसता है ज़बीं ख़ाक पे दरिया मेरे आगे।

[निहाँ == indistinguishable] [गर्द == sand] [सहरा == the desert ] [The line means, that I seem to be living for so long that the sand of the desert is getting created in front of me]
[ज़बीं == forhead] [ख़ाक == soil] [Again, the line signifies that I seem to have been alive to see the river erode the soil in front of me]

मत पूछ कि क्या हाल है मेरा तेरे पीछे,
तू देख कि क्या रंग है तेरा मेरे आगे।

ईमाँ मुझे रोके है, जो खींचे है मुझे कुफ़्र,
क़ाबा मेरे पीछे है, क़लीसा मेरे आगे।
[ईमाँ == integrity, truthfulness, religion] [कुफ़्र == irreligiousness, lure of the material gains] [क़ाबा == kaaba] [क़लीसा == technically is a Church, but used here to signify place where कुफ़्र happens]

गो हाथ को ज़ुंबिश नही, आँखों मे तो दम है,
रहने दो अभी सागर-ओ-मीना मेरे आगे।
[ज़ुंबिश == motion, energy] [सागर-ओ-मीना == the glass of wine]

Many Indian and Pakistani singers have beautiful renditions of the gazal. One of the more famous ones is by Jagjit Singh from the serial Mirza Ghalib. Here’s the clip on youtube:


Aahista aahista

Ameer Minai, like Majaaz, was from Lucknow. There was surely something about the city, that made people romantic. 🙂 I got the thought, while listening to one wonderful gazal by Ameer Minai, sung by Jagjit Singh. So here’s the gazal:

सरकती जाए है रुख़ से नक़ाब आहिस्ता आहिस्ता,
निकलता आ रहा है आफ़ताब आहिस्ता आहिस्ता।

[रुख़ == beloved’s face] [नक़ाब == veil] [आफ़ताब == sun]

जवाँ होने लगे जब वो तो हम से कर लिया परदा,
हया यक लख़्त आई और शबाब आहिस्ता आहिस्ता।

[हया == लज्जा, blush] [यक लख़्त == at once, suddenly] [शबाब == youth, beauty]

शब-ए-फ़ुरक़त का जागा हूँ, फ़रिश्तों अब तो सोने दो,
कभी फ़ुरसत मे कर लेना हिसाब आहिस्ता आहिस्ता।

[शब-ए-फ़ुरक़त == night of separation (from the beloved)]

सवाल-ए-वस्ल पर उनको उदूँ का ख़ौफ़ है इतना,
दबे होंटो से देते हैं जवाब आहिस्ता आहिस्ता।

[सवाल-ए-वस्ल == request to meet] [उदूँ == villian, competitor in love] [ख़ौफ़ == fear]

वो बेदर्दी से सिर काटे “अमीर” और मैं कहूँ उन से,
हुज़ूर आहिस्ता आहिस्ता, जनाब आहिस्ता आहिस्ता।

[बेदर्दी == ruthlessness]

And, you can listen to the gazal here.

Also, one of Jagjit Singh’s concert videos for the song can be found here.