Mata-e-Gair

Mata-e-Gair
यानि किसी गैर की अमानत ।

Sahir Ludhianvi and Amrita Pritam shared a love story which sounds like a dream and also a nightmare for a lifetime to me. I guess it is enough to say that they knew a love that was more than love and they lived it rather unconditionally.

An article in the First Post tried to describe their relationship and here’s an excerpt which left me wondering if the idea of love can be so..

“In her autobiography, Rasidi Ticket, Pritam writes about how they’d sit in silence and gaze into each other’s eyes while Ludhianvi chain-smoked his cigarettes. After he left, Amrita picked up the stubs left by him and smoked them, pressing her lips upon the invisible imprint of his.”

 

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The nazm below is said to have been written by Sahir when Amrita was with her long-standing partner Imroz and as you devour this, you will experience bits of what that distance meant to the two of them and the reality of their realities.

Here’s a gem you can listen to it from:

 

Mere khwaabon ke jharokhon ko sajaane wali
Tere khwaabon mein kahin mera guzar hai ki nahi
Puchkar apni nigaahon se batade mujh ko
Meri raaton ke muqaddar mein sehar hai ki nahi

(jharokhon: gazebo)   (sehar: morning)

Chaar din ki ye rifaaqat jo rifaaqat bhi nahi
Umr bhar ke liye aazaar hui jaati hai
Zindagi yun toh humesha se pareshaan si thi
Ab toh har saans giran-baar hui jaati hai

(rifaaqat: togetherness)      (aazar: suffering)    (giran-baar: heavy with burden)

Meri ujdi hui neendon ke shabistanon mein
Tu kisi khwaab ke paikar ki tareh aayi hai
Kabhi apni si kabhi gair nazar aayi hai
Kabhi ikhlas ki murat kabhi harjai hai

(shabistanon: bad chambers)   (paikar: appearance)    (ikhlas: sincerity)

Pyaar par bas toh nahi hai mera lekin phir bhi
Tu batade ki tujhe pyaar karun ya na karun
Tune khud apne tabassum se jagaya hai jinhein
Unn tamannaon ka izhar karun ya na karun

(tabassum: smile)    (izhaar: to express)

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Tu kisi aur ke daaman ki kali hai lekin
Meri raatein teri khushboo se basi rehti hain
Tu kahin bhi ho tere phool se aariz ki kasam
Teri palkein meri aankhon pe jhuki rehti hain

(aariz: cheek) 

Tere haathon ki haraarat tere saanson ki mehak
Tairti rehti hai ehsaas ki pehnai mein
Dhundti rehti hain takheel ki baahein tujhko
Sard raaton ko sulagti hui tanhaai mein

(haraarat: warmth)   (takheel: imagination)   (sulagti: burnt)

Tera altaf-o-karam ek haqeeqat hai magar
Ye haqeeqat bhi haqeeqat mein fasaana hi na ho
Teri manoos nigaahon ka ye mohtaat payaam
Dil ke khoon karne ka ek aur bahaana hi na ho

(altaf-o-karam: kindness)  (manoos: intimate)  (mohtaat: cautious)  (payaam: message)

Kaun jaane mere imroz ka fardaa kya hai
Qurbatein badhke pashemaan bhi ho jaati hain
Dil ke daman se lipatti hui rangeen nazrein
Dekhte dekhte anjaan bhi ho jaati hain

(imroz: today)   (fardaa: tomorrow)   (qurbatein: closeness)  (pashemaan: embarrassment)

Meri darmaanda jawaani ke tamannaon ke
Muzmahil khwaab ki tabeer batade mujhko
Tere daaman mein gulistan bhi hain veerane bhi
Mera haasil meri taqdeer bata de mujhko

(darmaanda: frustrated)  (muzmahil: exhausted)   (tabeer: interpretation)

 

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An attempt:

मेरे ख़्वाबों के झरखों को सजाने वाली
तेरे ख़्वाबों में कहीं मेरा गुज़र है की नही
पूछकर अपनी निगाहों से बतादे मुझको
मेरी रातों के मुक़द्दर में सहर है कि नही

You.. who adorns the gazebo of my dreams
Am I ever a passerby in your dreams?
Why don’t you ask your eyes and tell me
Do the nights of my fate get the chance to see the morning light?

 

चार दिन की ये रिफ़ाकत जो रिफ़ाकत भी नही
उम्र भर के लिए आज़ार हुई जाती है
ज़िन्दगी यूँ तो हमेशा से परेशां सी थी
अब तो हर सांस गिराँ-बार हुई जाती है

Our time together is so little.. It’s hardly any time together
It will make us suffer for the rest of our lives
Life was mostly troubled anyway
Now even my breaths are heavily burdened

 

मेरी उजड़ी हुई नींदों के शबिस्तानों में
तू किसी ख्वाब के पैकर की तरह आती है
कभी अपनी सी कभी गैर नज़र आई है
कभी इखलास की मूरत कभी हरजाई है

In the ruined chambers of my sleep
You come embodying some dream
Sometimes I feel you’re mine, sometimes I don’t
Sometimes you seem so sincere, sometimes a harlot

 

प्यार पर बस तो नही है मेरा लेकिन फिर भी
तू बतादे कि तुझे प्यार करूँ या ना करूँ
तूने खुद अपने तबस्सुम से जगाया है जिन्हें
उन तमन्नाओं का इज़हार करूँ या ना करूँ

I don’t control who I fall in love with me
At least tell me if I should love you or I shouldn’t
Your smile alone has awaken these feelings inside me
At least tell me if I should express those or I shouldn’t

 

तू किसी और के दामन कि काली है लेकिन
मेरी रातें तेरी खुशबू से बसी रहती हैं
तू कहीं भी हो तेरे फूल से आरिज़ की कसम
तेरी पलकें मेरी आँखों पे झुकी रहती हैं

You are a blossom in someone else’s space
Yet my nights are filled with your fragrance
No matter where you are, I swear on your rosy cheeks
It’s like your lids are the shade to my eyes

 

तेरे हाथों की हरारत तेरी साँसों की महक
तैरती रहती है एहसास की पहनाई में
ढूंढती रहती हैं ताखील की बाहें तुझको
सार्ड रातों को सुलगती हुई तन्हाई में

The warmth of your hands and the scent of your breath
Swim around here dressed in feelings all around me
My arms look around for you in my imagination
When it’s so cold outside that the emptiness nearly burns me down

 

तेरा अल्ताफ-ओ-करम एक हकीकत है मगर
ये हकीकत भी हकीकत में फ़साना ना ही ना हो
तेरी माणूस निगाहों का ये मोहतात पयाम
दिल के ख़ून करने का एक और बहाना ही ना हो

Your kindness is a reality on one hand, yes
But the reality of this this reality could also be fictional
Your intimate look gives some cautious message
Maybe it could be another reason to break my heart

 

कौन जाने मेरे इमरोज़ का फ़र्दा क्या है
कुर्बतें बढ़के पशेमाँ भी हो जाती हैं
दिल के दामन से लिपटती हुई रंगीन नज़रें
देखते देखते अंजान भी हो जाती हैं

Who knows what’s the future of my present day
Nearness grows into an embarrassment for some
Those flowery eyes that embrace my heart’s spaces
In no time become a stranger’s
मेरी दरमान्दा जवानी के तमन्नाओं के
मुज़्महिल ख्वाब की ताबीर बतादे मुझको
तेरे दामन में गुलिस्तां भी हैं वीराने भी
मेरा हासिल मेरी तक़दीर बतादे मुझको

You’re my frustrated youth’s desire
Tell me the interpretation of my exhausted dreams
Your heart is filled places that blossom and those left deserted too
Tell me the result of all this.. Tell me my fate.

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Kabhi Kabhie

Anyone who is fond of old Hindi songs has definitely heard Kabhi Kabhie (1975), and most of them have seen the film too. It is simply beautiful and heartbreaking.

Some of you might remember that there’s a poem that Amitabh recites when he meets Rakhee over an interview after many years have passed since their rendezvous.

Here’s the clipping (such.. emotions by the way):

*chokes*

What you see above is actually parts of a nazm published in Sahir Ludhianvi’s Talkhiyaan in the year 1960. A few words from Urdu have been modified and made simpler for understanding.

But hey.

*surprise*

Here’s the entire nazm by Sahir Ludhianvi titled Kabhi Kabhi.  I discovered this 3 years ago and I think it’s worth memorizing for the rest of my life.

Warning: Tissue box. NOW.

Kabhi Kabhi mere dil mein khayaal aataa hai
Ki zindagi teri zulfon ki narm chhaaon mein
Guzarne paati to shaadaab ho bhi sakti thi                  (shadaab: verdant, blooming)
Yeh teergi jo mere zeest ka muqaddar hai                    (teergi: darkness; zeest: life, muqaddar: fate)
Teri nazar ki shuaon mein kho bhi sakti thi                 (shuaon: rays)
Ajab na thaa ki main begana-e-alam reh kar           (begaana-e-alam: stranger to sorrow)
Tere jamaal ki ranaaiyon mein kho rehta                    (jamaal: beauty)
Tera gudaaz-badan, teri neembaz aankhein             (gudaaz-badan: delicate body)
Inhi haseen fasano mein main ho rehta

 

Pukarati mujhe jab talkhiyan zamane ki                  (talkhiyan: bitterness)
Tere labon se halavat ke ghunt pi leta                          (halavat: sweetness)
Hayaat chikhti phirti barehana-sar aur main           (barehana: bare)
Ghaneri zulfon ke saaye mein chhup ke ji leta

Magar ye ho na saka
Magar ye ho na saka aur ab ye aalam hai
Ki tu nahin, tera gham, teri justaju bhi nahi
Guzar rahi hai kuch is tarah zindagi jaise
Ise kisi ke sahare ki aarzoo bhi nahi
Zamane bhar ke dukhon ko laga chuka hun gale
Guzar raha hun kuch anjaani rahguzaron se
Muhib saaye meri simt badhte aate hain                      (muheeb: dreadful; simt: direction)

Hayaat-o-maut ke purhaul khaarzaaron se                (purhaul: frightful; khaarzaaron: thorn fields)

 

Na koi jaada, na manzil, na roshni ka suraag              (jaada: tracks)
Bhatak rahi hai khalaaon mein zindagi meri              (khalaon: spaces)
Inhi khalaon mein reh jaaunga kabhi kho kar
Main jaanta hun meri ham-nafas, magar yun hii
Kabhi Kabhi mere dil mein khayal aata hai..

 

Now play this, and hear it in Sahir’s own voice. Thank me later. For the rest of your life. I know.

 

I’m going to attempt to translate this heartwrenching piece of work. Forgive me if it’s horrible:

कभी -कभी  मेरे  दिल  में  ख़याल आता है 

कि  ज़िन्दगी तेरी  ज़ुल्फ़ों  की नर्म छाओं  में 
गुज़रने पाती तो शादाब हो भी  सकती थी 
ये  तीरगी जो मेरी ज़ीस्त का  मुक़द्दर  है
तेरी नज़र की शुआओं में खो भी सकती थी
Sometimes I can’t help but wonder
If I could have spent this life in the shadows of your locks
Then, maybe, it would have blossomed in some way
This darkness that has become the fate of my being
Could have drowned from the light of your eyes

अजब न था कि मैं बेगाना-ए-आलम रहकर
तेरे जमाल की रानाईयों में खो रहता
तेरा गुदाज़ बदन, तेरी नीमबाज़ आँखें
इन्ही हसीं फ़सानों में मैं खो रहता
It wouldn’t have been so strange that despite being a stranger to sorrow
I could have reveled in your beauty all along
Your fragile body, your intoxicating eyes
I could have spent my time being lost in you
पुकारती जब मुझे तल्खियाँ ज़माने की
तेरे लबों से हलावत के घूंट पी लेता
हयात चीखती फिरती बरहना सर और मैं  
घनेरी ज़ुल्फ़ों में छुप के जी लेता
 Even if the world’s bitterness were to keep calling for me
I could manage to drink the sweetness from your lips
Life would have screamed all over for me, and me
I could have simply hid in you and lived.
मगर ये हो न सका
मगर ये हो न सका और अब ये आलम है
कि तू नहीं, तेरा गम, तेरी जुस्तजू भी नहीं
गुज़र रही हैं कुछ इस तरह जिंदगी जैसे 
इसे किसी के सहारे की आरज़ू  भी नहीं 
 But it didn’t happen
But it didn’t happen and the situation is now such
That neither are you there, nor is the pain, nor is my pursuit
Somehow time is passing and I am living
In a way that I don’t need anyone anymore
ज़माने भर के दुखो को लगा चुका हूँ गले
गुज़र रहा हूँ कुछ अनजानी राहगुज़ारों से
मुहीब साए मेरी सम्त बढ़ते आते हैं
हयात-ओ-मौत के पुरहौल खाज़ारों से
 I have embraced the world’s sorrows
And I’m crossing some unknown paths
Dreadful shadows are moving towards me
From across the dead and the dreadful fields of thorns

न कोई जादा, न मंज़िल,  न रौशनी का सुराग
भटक रही है ख़लाओं में ज़िन्दगी मेरी
इन्हीं  ख़लाओं में रह जाऊँगा कभी खो कर
मैं जानता हूँ मेरी हमनफ़स.. मगर  यूँ  ही
 Nor is there any track to a destination nor a spec of light
I am lost in these empty spaces of life
Maybe I will get lost in these spaces forever
I know, my lover.. but still

कभी-कभी मेरे दिल में ख़याल आता है!
Sometimes I can’t help but wonder.