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Thursday, 31 May 2012

Ik chameli ke mandve tale

( Pandit Vithal Rao Sings 'Ik Chameli ke Mandave tale')

 इक चमेली के मंडवे तले
 मैकदे से ज़रा दूर उस मोड़ पर
 दो बदन प्यार की आग में जल गये
 इक चमेली के मंडवे तले

[ मंडवे = shed, bower, an arbour]

प्यार हुर्फ़-ए-वफ़ा प्यार उनका खुदा
 प्यार उनकी किताब
 दो बदन प्यार की आग में जल गये
 इक चमेली के मंडवे तले

[harf = letters of word]

ओस में भीगते, चाँदनी में नहाते हुए
 जैसे दो ताज़ा-रूह ताज़ा-दम फूल पिछले पहर
 ठंडी ठंडी सुबुकरौ चमन की हवा
 सर्फ-ए-मातम हुई
 काली-काली लट्टों से लिपट, गर्म रुखसार पर
 एक पल के लिए रुक गयी
 दो बदन प्यार की आग में जल गये
 इक चमेली के मंडवे तले

[सुबुकरौ  = fast walker, सर्फ-ए-मातम = extravagent in tragedy, रुखसार  = cheeks]


हमने देखा उन्हें दिन में और रात में ,
नूर-ओ-ज़ुलमात में
मस्जिदों के मीनारों ने देखा उन्हें
मंदिरों के किवाड़ओ  ने देखा उन्हें
मैकदे की दराडों ने देखा उन्हें
दो बदन प्यार की आग में जल गये
इक चमेली के मंडवे तले


ये बता चारागार तेरी ज़म्बील में
 नुस्का-ए-कीमिया-ए-मुहब्बत भी है
 कुछ इलाज-ओ-मुद्दावा-ए- उलफत भी है
 दो बदन प्यार की आग में जल गये
 इक चमेली  के मंडवे तले

[चारागार = healer/doctor, ज़म्बील = basket,  कीमिया= chemistry, मुद्दावा= perpetuity, eternity, उलफत = love]


'मख्दूम मोईउद्दीन'


ik chamelii ke mandwe tale
maikade se zaraa door us mod par
do badan pyaar ki aag mein jal gaye
ik chamelii ke mandwe tale
 
[ mandwe = shed, bower, an arbour]

pyaar harf-e-wafaa, pyaar unkaa Khudaa
pyaar unki Kitaab
do badan pyaar ki aag mein jal gaye
ik chamelii ke mandwe tale

[harf = letters of word]


os mein bheegte, chaandni mein nahaate huye
jaise do taazaa-ruh taazaa-dam phool pichhle pahar
thandi thandi subuk rau chaman ki hawaa
sarf-e-maatam huyi
kaali-kaali laton se lipat, garm rukhsaar par
ek pal ke liye ruk gayi
do badan pyaar ki aag mein jal gaye
ik chamelii ke mandwe tale

[subuk rau = fast walker, sarf-e-maatam = extravagent in tragedy, rukhsaar = cheeks]



hamne dekhaa unhen din mein aur raat mein ,
noor-o-zulmaat mein
masjidon ke minaaron ne dekhaa unhen
mandiron ke kivaadon ne dekhaa unhen
maikade ki daraadon ne dekhaa unhen
do badan pyaar ki aag mein jal gaye
ik chamelii ke mandwe tale

ye bataa chaaraagar teri zambeel mein
nuskaa-e-keemiyaa-e-muhabbat bhi hai
kuchh ilaaj-o-mudaavaa-e- ulfat bhi hai
do badan pyaar ki aag mein jal gaye
ik chamelii ke mandwe tale

[Zambeel = basket,  keemiyaa= chemistry, mudaawamat = perpetuity, eternity, ulfat = love]


Makhdoom Moiuddin


I am putting below a rough translation of this ghazal:


some distance from the tavern, near the bend of the road
two bodies got burnt in the fire of love
below the arbor of the jasmine tree

love meant  fidelity, love meant god
love a book  for them
two bodies got burnt in the fire of love
below the arbor of the jasmine tree 

drenched in dew and bathing in the moonlight
like two pure souls of fresh flowers of the last evening
the cold and swift wind of the garden
got extravagent in tragedy
when entagled in the dark tresses, on those warm cheeks
got stopped for a moment
two bodies got burnt in the fire of love
below the arbor of  the jasmine tree
we have seen them in days and in nights
in light and in dark
the minarets of mosques have seen them
the facades of temples have seen them
the cleft of taverns have seen them
two bodies got burnt in the fire of love
below the arbor of the jasmine tree 
tell me O healer, in your basket
is there a medicine for chemistry of love
or any treatment for perpetual love
two bodies got burnt in the fire of love
below the arbor of the jasmine tree

Wednesday, 23 May 2012

बहुत आती है तेरी याद

बहुत आती है तेरी याद 
जब  भी आती है रुलाती है तेरी याद 

रौनक तुझसे जहाँ में थी 
जुज़ तेरे सब है नाशाद 
[जुज़  = without, नाशाद  = unhappy]

सोगवार दिल है गुदाज़ 
उस पे ये बेजारी ये बेदाद  
[सोगवार = sad, grieved, गुदाज़  = soft/molten, बेजारी = anger/displeasure बेदाद = injustice]

गुल-ए-इश्क खिलता एक बार 
फिर न बसे दिल-ए-बर्बाद 
[गुल-ए-इश्क  = flower of love ]

आशिक सा सादा है कौन है 
वो ताईर जिसका दिलबर है सय्याद 
[ताईर = bird ]

सांस लेना भी है मुहाल 
ज़ालिम है तेरी तरह ये  बाद 
[ मुहाल  = difficult/impossible, बाद = wind]

सुकूत बनी मुज़्तरिब की जुबां 
न बयां करनी उसे गम की रुदाद
[सुकूत  = silence, रुदाद  = story ]

'मुज़्तरिब'


bahut aati hai teri yaad
jab aati hai rulati hai teri yaad

raunak tujhse jahan mein thee
zuz tere sab hai naashaad
[zuz = without, naashaad= unhappy]

sogwaar dil hai gudaaz
uss pe ye bezaari ye bedaad
[sogwaar = sad, grieved, gudaaz= soft/molten, bezaari = anger/displeasure bedaad= injustice]

gul-e-ishq khilta bus ek baar
ab na base hai dil-e-barbaad
[gul-e-ishq  = flower of love ]

aashiq sa sada kaun hai
wo tair jiska dilbar ik sayyaad
 [tair = bird ]

saans lena bhee hai muhaal
zaalim hai teri tarah ye baad
[ muhaal= difficult/impossible, baad = wind]

sukuut bani muztarib ke zubaan
na bayan karni usse gham ki rudaad
[sukuut = silence, rudaad= story ]
 
'Muztarib'

بہت آتی ہے تیری یاد 
جب آتی ہے  رلاتی ہے تیری یاد 

رونک تجھسے جہاں میں ت 
زوز تیرے سب ہے ناشاد 

سوگوار دل ہے گداز 
اس پی یہ بیزاری یہ بیداد 

گل ا عشق کھلتا بس ایک بار 
اب نہ بسے  ے دل ا برباد 

عاشق سا سادہ کون ہے 
وو طائر جسکا دلبر ہو صیّاد 

سانس لینا بھی ہے محال 
ظالم ہے تیری طرح یہ بعد 

سکوت بنی مضطرب کی زبان 
نہ بیان کرنی اسے گم کی روداد 

مضطرب 

Sunday, 20 May 2012

pattaa-pattaa buTaa buTaa haal hamaaraa jaane hai

 
(Janab Mehdi Hasan sings 'Patta Patta')
पत्ता पत्ता बूटा बूटा हाल हमारा जाने है
जाने न जाने गुल ही न जाने, बाग़ तो सारा जाने है

आगे उस मुतक़ब्बर के हम खुदा खुदा किया करते हैं
कब मौजूद खुदा को वो मगरूर खुद-आरा जाने है
[मुतक़ब्बर=arrogant, मगरूर = proud and arrogant  खुद-आरा = opinion]

आशिक सा सादा कोई और न होगा दुनिया में
जी के जिआन को इश्क में उस के अपना वारा जाने है
[ जिआन = interest, वारा = sacrifice/offering ]

चारागरी बीमारी-ए-दिल की रश्म-ए-शहर-ए-हुश्न नहीं
वर्ना दिलबर-ए-नादाँ भी इस दर्द का चारा जाने है
[चारागरी = medication, बीमारी-ए-दिल = ailment of heart,रश्म-ए-शहर-ए-हुश्न = tradition of the City of beauties, दिलबर-ए-नादाँ = innocent beloved ]

महर-ओ-वफ़ा-ओ-लुत्फ़-ओ-इनायत एक से वाकिफ इन में नहीं
और तो सब कुछ तंज़-ओ-कनाया रम्ज़-ओ-इशारा जाने है
[महर=mercy; वफ़ा = fidelity, लुत्फ़= pleasure, इनायत = blessings,  वाकिफ=aware;तंज़-ओ-कनाया=taunting, teasing;  रम्ज़-ओ-इशारा=hinting at]

क्या क्या फितने सर पर उसके लाता है माशूक अपना
जिस बेदिल बेताब-ओ-तवां को इश्क का मारा जाने है
[फितने=ordeals; बेताब-ओ-तवां=restless, weak]

आशिक तो मुर्दा है हमेशा जी उठा है देख ऊसे
यार के आ जाने को यका यक उम्र दोबार जाने है
मीर ताकी 'मीर' 

pattaa-pattaa buuTaa-buuTaa haal hamaaraa jaane hai
jaane na jaane gul hii na jaane, baaG to saaraa jaane hai

aage us mutaqabbar ke ham Khudaa Khudaa kiyaa karate hai.n
kab maujuud Khudaa ko vo maGaruur Khud-aaraa jaane hai
[mutaqabbar=arrogant]

aashiq saa to saadaa koii aur na hogaa duniyaa me.n
jii ke ziaa.N ko ishq me.n us ke apanaa vaaraa jaane hai

chaaraagarii biimaarii-e-dil kii rasm-e-shahar-e-husn nahii.n
varnaa dilabar-e-naadaa.N bhii is dard kaa chaaraa jaane hai

 mehar-o-vafaa-o-lutf-o-inaayat ek se vaaqif in me.n nahii.n
aur to sab kuchh tanz-o-kanaayaa ramz-o-ishaaraa jaane hai
[mehar=mercy; vaaqif=aware;tanz-o-kanaayaa=taunting, teasing; ramz-o-ishaaraa=hinting at]

kyaa kyaa fitane sar par usake laataa hai maashuuq apanaa
jis bedil betaab-o-tavaa.N ko ishq kaa maaraa jaane hai
[fitane=ordeals; betaab-o-tavaa.N=restless, weak]

aashiq to murdaa hai hameshaa jii uThataa hai dekhe use
yaar ke aa jaane ko yakaayak umr do baaraa jaane hai

Meer Taqi 'Meer'

Sunday, 13 May 2012

A brief commentary on the life and poetry of Meer Taqi Meer


Source
There are two prime sources of information about Meer’s life; the first one is his autobiography ‘Zikr-e-Meer’ and the second is ‘Aab-e-Hayat’ a book written by Muhammad Husain Azad who is considered to be the founder of modern Urdu literature. ‘AAb-e-Hayat’ talks about interesting events and instances from Meer’s life, a few of them might be apocryphal but nonetheless it makes a good read. The source for this Blog post is ‘Divan-e-Meer’, a book compiled by Ali Sardar Jafri and first published in 1960 by Hindustani book trust - Mumbai. This book in turn takes information from the aforementioned books.
Biography of Meer
Meer was born in 1722 as Muhammad Taqi in Agra (then Akbarabad). In his autobiography, ‘Zikr-e-Meer’, he has mentioned that his grandfather was an inspector in Agra and his father ‘Muhhamad Ali’ was a Sufi fakir.  He has not given any details of his mother in his book. He has said a lot about his step brother ‘Muhammad Hasan’ and one can infer that Meer’s family was engulfed in strife and discord. 
When Muhammad Ali died Meer was at tender age of 9 or 10. His father left a debt of rupee three hundred and few hundred books which Muhammad Hasan usurped. A disciple of Muhammad Ali gave five hundred rupee which was came handy to settle the debt and perform his cremation ceremony. Meer inherited his father’s poverty and his mysticism.
Meer’s spent his childhood in search of employment and this brought him to Delhi. He was just 16 years old when he left Agra and came to Delhi.  This was the time of rule of Mughal emperor Muhammad Shah. Meer managed to get close to one of the courtiers ‘Amir-Ul-Umaraa Sams-ud-Daula’ and this proximity got him a patronage of rupee 1 per day. With this salary he came back to Agra.
 While in Agra, a beauty enchanted the young shayar. Her name and provenance is still shrouded into mystery but what is certain is that love was from both the sides. And as rightly said that love and enmity cannot be hidden (‘Ishq aur Mushq chupaaye nahin chupte’) ,  people started noticing the love affair. Meer was a Sayyed (a direct descended of Prophet) and being a member of such a high clan he was not to fall in love to lesser clan lady. His love affair brought dishonor to him. Meer has expressed his  ignominy  as:

   फिरते हो मीर ख्वार, कोई पूछता ही नहीं
इस आशिकी में इज्ज़त-ए-सादात भी गयी 
[ख्वार = dishonoured/shame; इज्ज़त-ए-सादात = honour of being a saadaat(sayyed) ]
‘Phirte ho Meer khwar, koi puchata he nahin
Iss ashiqi mein izzat-e-saadaat bhee gayi’
(O Meer, you keep wandering in disgrace and no body talks to you,
you have lost the honour of being a saadat (Sayyed) in this love)
Providence didn’t allow Meer to have financial stability and peace of mind, not yet. Hardly a year had passed, when Nadir Shah plundered Delhi and Meer’s employer, Sams-ud- Daula, was killed in the raid and Meer was pushed back into penury. Once again Meer was forced to leave Agra. He was pained to leave his hometown and his beloved. Thus he said:

जैसे हसरत लिए जाता है जहां से कोई 
आह यूँ कूचा-ए-दिलबर से  हमने किया 
‘Jaise hasrat liye jaata hai jahan se koi
Aah yun kuucha-e-dilbar se safar hamne kia’
I left the lane of my beloved as if someone dies with unfulfilled desire]
‘Beauty lies in the eyes of beholder’ thus said Keats but indeed the Lady of Meer’s love would really have been very beautiful else these verses could not be justified:
क्या तन-ए-नाज़ुकी  है, जान को भी हसद है 
क्या बदन का रंग है, तह जिसकी पैराहन पे है
[तन-ए-नाज़ुकी  = slender body, हसद = jealousy, पैराहन = cloth ]

“kya tan-e-naazuk hai, jaan ko bhee hasad hai
Kya badan ka rang hai, tah jiski pairaahan pe hai”

[such is tenderness of her body that even the life is jealous,
such is the colour of her body that its visible within the covering ]
शौक़-ए-कामत में तेरी ए  नौ निहाल 
गुल की शाखें लेती हैं अंगडाइयां

“shauq-e-kaamat mein teri aye nau nihaal
Gul kee shaakhein leti hain angdaaiyan”
[Enamored of your slender height, o nubile ,
 the flower stems are stretching themselves]

नाज़ुकी उसके लब  की क्या कहिये , पंखुड़ी इक गुलाब की सी  है 
'मीर'  उन नीमबाज़  आँखों में  सारी  मस्ती शराब की सी है 

Nazuki uske lab kee kya kahiye, pankhudi ik gulaab kee see hai
‘Meer’ un neembaaz aankhon mein saari masti  sharaab kee see hai
[ what to tell you the softness of her lips, its like a petal of a rose
O Meer , In those deep dark eyes, there is merriment  of the wine ]
The quest of love and work got intermingled and it became difficult to identify in Meer’s couplet the sorrow of which he is referring to. These were the most painful times of Meer’s life. He describes his situation aptly in this masnavi:
ज़माने नें रखा मुझे मुत्तसिल 
परागंद रोज़ी, परागंद दिल 
[मुत्तसिल = ever/always परागन्द रोज़ी = fianancial problem, परागन्द दिल = problem of heart ]

Jamaane nein rakha mujhe  muttasil
Paragand rozi, paragand dil

This Delhi was different than the one which he visited an year earlier, plundered and destroyed by rapaciousness of Nadir shah. Nadir Shah looted Delhi and killed its denizen for three consecutive days, 11th , 12th and 13th of march in 1739. More than 30000 people were killed. The treasure accumulated by the eight previous kings of Mughal sultanate got looted and was taken to Iran on 10000 Camels, 10000 Horses and 3000 Elephants. Entire Delhi including the king became poor.
क्या  कहिये  अपने अहद में जितने अमीर थे 
टुकड़े पे जान देते थे सब फ़कीर थे
[अहद  = period, time ]

“Kya Kahiye apne ahad mein jitney amir the
Tukre pe jaan dete the sab fakir the ‘
[ What to tell, all the rich ppl of our time, were dying for penny, were beggers]

In such condition who would have helped Meer?  Having nowhere to go he unwillingly had to take help from the maternal uncle of his step brother. ‘Sirajuddin khan-e-Aarzu’ was a polymath. He was a shayar of Arabic, Persian, Urdu and Sanskrit. Meer learned the nuances of Shayari from Khan-e-Aarzu though he had not admitted this in his autobiography but same can be construed if one looks at the style of his shers.  The relationship between them soured very soon. Muhammad Husain ‘Azad’ in his book ‘Aab-e-hayat’ has attributed the split between these two as a religious difference. He says that Khan-e-Aarzu was a Hanifi and Meer a Shia, a difference in opinion and Meer left Khan-e-Aarzu.  In ‘Zikr-e-Meer’,  Meer blames his step brother for enticing Khan-e-Aarzu against him. Though whatever may have been the reason the camaraderie between two didn’t last long. 

Hardship and broken relationships impacted Meer and he became mentally ill. During nights he would see a beautiful apparition. He would not be able to sleep. As the day approached the apparition would disappear making Meer behave like a madman. He started chasing people with stone in his hand. His condition became so worse that he had to be kept in chains.  He would tear his clothes and would be vituperative. Khan-e-Aarzu advised him that it is better to tear shers than clothes and be poetic even while abusing because a good abuse is better than a bad wish.  What khan-e-Aarzu might have advised in jest Meer took  seriously. Many critics agree that some of the best couplets of Meer were composed in those days of insanity. Various medication and supplications were tried. Gradually he started improving and his condition became normal.  
Husain Azad writes that it was Khan-e-Aarzu who advised Meer to write in Rekhta ( Urdu was thus called at that time). But Meer gives this honor to a Sayyed by the name of Saadat Ali, a resident of Amroha, who encouraged him to write in Rekhta and Meer obliged. By the age of 25-26 Meer’s mastery was well established and his fame was everywhere.  His shers were making rounds in many cities. In 1748 he got patronage from  the Governor of Malwa, Riaayat Khan. This brought an end to his miseries giving him the much needed financial stability.  He even started conducting Mushairas at his home.
But those were the tumultuous time. The Mughal Empire was declining. Delhi was losing it control over it provinces and everywhere Governors were revolting and declaring themselves self governed. The British were acting as ventriloquist to the puppet kings and princes.
The decline of the Mughal empire was expedited by the frequent attacks of Ahmad shah Abdali which started with attack in North West frontier in 1748 and continued for about 20 years. These attacks led to many internal wars which weekend the Mughal Empire and brought it to its deathbed. Meer was present in many wars along with his patrons. At times he would be on the side of victor but mostly he was with the vanquished and witnessed a lot of killing and destruction.  In 1748 When Abdali first attacked India, Meer was present in Lahore with Riaayat Khan. He also witnessed the third battle of Panipat fought between Marathas and Abdali in 1761. Meer was seeing the economic and moral decline of his beloved city Delhi.  His work is a documentary of those times.  In one of the Mukhammass he gives a very vivid description of the war time scene.
Meer was very short tempered and impulsive by nature. He left Riaayat Khan’s job because it so happened that once Riaayat Khan asked a lower caste boy to sing a Ghazal of Meer. Meer took umbrage to this and left his job.  Meer couldn’t find a patron soon. The novelty and royalty was busy securing their own lives and nobody thought about Meer. Meer got very disillusioned and wrote:
किस तरह आह ख़ाक-ए -मज़ल्लत से मैं उठूँ 
उफ्तादा तर जो मुझसे मेरा दस्तगीर हो

Kis tarah aah khaak-e-mazallat se main uthun
Uftaada tar jo mujhse mera dastgeer ho
[Oh! How do I rise from this dirt of distress,
in more distress are the ones who are expected to subsist me]
तू है  बेचारगादा मीर , तेरा क्या मजकूर 
मिल गए ख़ाक में याँ साहेब-ए-अफसर कितने

“Tu hai becharagada meer, tera kya majkoor
Mil gaye khaak mein yaan saaheb-e-afsar kitne’
[you are in a sorrystate, whats your say,
 many got in dust who were officers till now ]
In 1954, Ahamad shah, the Mughal emperor was blinded and removed from the throne.  On this incident Meer writes:
शाहाँ की कोहल-ए-जवाहिर थी ख़ाक-ए-पा जिनकी 
उन्हीं के आँखों में फिरती सलाइयां देखी 

Shahan kee kohal-e-jawahir thee khaak-e-paa jinki
Unhi ke aankhon mein phirti salaaiyaan dekhin
[The king for whom kohl made of pearls was like a dust of feet,
I saw iron being pierced in those eyes ]
Alamgir 2, the 55 year old, became the next king. With him became powerful the sly and cunning people. Meer became very disappointed with this and wrote:
रही न पुख्तगी आलम में, दौर-ए-खामी है 
हज़ार हैफ कमीनों का चर्ख हामी है 

Rahi na pukhtagee aalam mein, daur-e-khaami hai
Hazaar haif kaminon ka charkh haami hai

[There is no stability in this time of flux
Thoushand  cunnings alas, are ruling the world]
Meer became very acerbic seeing the happenings around. The freshness, tenderness and imressioninsm in his Ghazals were replaced by strong ,acedic  and abusive words yet it conveyed the feelings to the fullest like the following one: 

सुना है मैंने ए घतिये तेरे खलवत नशीनो से 
की तू दारु पिए है रात को मिल कर कमीनो से 
Suna hai maine aye ghatiye tere khalvatnashinon se
Kee tu daaru piye hai raat ko mil kar kaminon se
[O degraded, I have heard from your partners
That you drink wine in night with the cunnings and slys]

Meer started avoiding the cunnings and became very secluded. His reclusiveness in the prevailing political and social situation made his subsistence difficult. After leaving the job of Riaayat Khan , Meer took the service of Nawab Bahadur Javed Khan. In 1952 the prime minister of Mughal kingdom , Safdar Jang, who was also the governor of Awadh province got Nawab Bahadur killed, after which Meer came into the service of Mahanarayan. After Mahanarayan he came in the service of Jugal Kishore who was the lawyer for Bengal.
Where Delhi was declining, Lucknow was on rise or at least it seemed so. The governor of Awadh Safdar Jang took advantage of weakening of the Mughal empire and declared himself independent. After his death his son Sujjaudin Daula became the head of Awadh. He led a big army in 1964 against British in the battle of Buxar. He lost the battle and English took control of his kingdom proclaiming him a titular head. Unlike Delhi where kings became fakir or were killed when they lost , in Lucknow they would immerse themselves in hedonistic activities. This led to a pseudo cultural ascendency. Art and literature flourished under the kings who had no power to govern.   This culture was hollow and rotten from within.  To this stogy culture were attracted many shayars from Delhi. Many like Khan-e-Aarzu , Sauda , Mirza jaan-e-jaana migrated to Lucknow looking for a greener pasture.  Meer too eventually had to leave Delhi.
He came to Lucknow in 1782-83 in the reign of Asif-ud-daula who was the son of Suja-ud-daula .What a travesty of time it was, in  the Mughal rule the literati would introduce themselves to the kings in the court presenting their composition whereas  Meer met Asif-ud -Daula during a game of  cock fight. The rest of his life he spent in Lucknow without worrying about money. The stability and peace which he kept searching in Delhi, he found it in Lucknow but still his heart longed for beleaguered Delhi and he never liked Lucknow:
फिर  मैं सूरत-ए-अहवाल  हर इक को  दिखाता याँ 
मुर्रवत कहत है, आँखें नहीं कोई मिलाता याँ 
Phir main surat-e-ahwaal, har ik ko dikhata yaan
Murrawat kahat hai, aanken nahin koi milata yaan

खराबा दिल्ली का दह्चंद बेहतर लखनऊ  से  था 
वहीँ मैं काश मर जाता, सरासीमा न आता याँ 
Kharaaba dilli ka dahchand behtar lucknow se tha
Wahin main kaash mar jaata, saraaseema na aata yaan 
बरसों से लखनऊ में इक्मात है मुझको लेक 
याँ  के चलन से रखता हूँ,  अज्म-ए-सफ़र हनोज़ 
 Barson se luknow mein ikaamat hai mujhko lek
Yaan ke chalan se rakhta hoon, azm-e-safar hanoz

आबाद उजड़ा लखनऊ चुगदों से अब हुआ
मुश्किल है इस खराबे में आदम की बी-ओ-बाश
Aabaad, ujda luck now chugdon se ab hua,
Muskil hai iss kharabe mein aadam kee bood-o-baash
किस किस अदा से रखते मैं कहे वले 
समझा न कोई मेरी जबान इस दयार में
Kis kis adaa se rekhte maine kahe wale
Samjha na koi meri jabaan iss dayar mein

 
In last 20-30 years of his life he didn’t write Ghazals worthy of his calibre. He kept writing masnavis and shikaarnaama for Asifuddaula. He had reached the zenith in delhi, Lucknow couldn’t provide a more higher level for him to soar. He died in 1810.
जाने का नहीं शोर सुखन का मिरे हर्गिश
ता  हश्र जहां में मीरा दीवान रहेगा 
Jaane ka nahin, shor sukhan ka mire hargisz
Taa hashr, jahaan mein mira diwaan rahega

An anlysis of Meer's Literature

Shayars have been called the disciple of Shayari and Messenger of Shayari (Paighambar-e-Sukhan, “Wali Deccani”). Meer Taqi Meer is the shayar who is called God of Shayari (‘Khuda-e-Sukhan’). In the presence of Wali Dakhani, Sauda, Nazir Akbarabadi, Ghalib and Iqbaal it would be unfair to say that Meer is the greatest shayar yet it is undeniable fact that in the list Meer’s name will come on the top. Even though in terms of popularity Ghalib and Iqbaal are ahead of Meer and their books sell more than Meer’s and their shers are more often quoted than Meer’s and they had influenced the modern day Shayars  more than Meer yet there are critics who have denied greatness to them but none has yet questioned the mastery of Meer. Shayars across all generations have bowed before Meer. Ghalib pays his tribute to Meer as:
ग़ालिब अपना यह अकीदा है बकौल-ए-नासिख 
आप बेबहरा है जो मोताकिद-ए-मीर नहीं 
"GHalib" apna yeh aqeeda hai ba-qoul-e-NaasiKH
aap be-bahra hai jo motqid-e-Meer nahiN
[aqeeda  = affirmation/confirmation, ba-qoul-e-NaasiKH = quoting NaasiKH (a student of Meer), be-bahra = poor, motqid-e-Meer = follower of Meer]
Ghalib affirms this quoting Naasikh
That one is poor who is not the follower of ‘Meer’
रेख्ता के तुम ही उस्ताद नहीं हो 'ग़ालिब'
कहते हैं अगले ज़माने में कोई मीर भी था 
rekhta ke tum hi ustaad nahiN ho "GHalib"
kahte haiN agle zamane meN koi Meer bhi thA
[rekhta = Urdu]
You are not the only master of ‘Rekhta’, O Ghalib
People says that in past there was someone called ‘Meer’
and Ghalib’s contemporary Zauq says
न हुआ पर न हुआ मीर का अंदाज़ नसीब 
"जॉक" यारों नें बहुत जोर ग़ज़ल में मारा 
na huA par na huA Meer ka andAz naseeb
"Zauq" yaaroN ne bohot zor GHazal meN mara
Couldn’t attain the style of Meer,
Zauq though friends tried a lot in Ghazals writing
And what did Meer say about himself. In self praise Meer says:
सारे आलम पे मैं हूँ छाया हुआ 
मुस्तनद है मेरा फरमाया हुआ 

Saare aalam per main hoon chaya hua
Mustnad hai mera farmaya hua
[ aalam = world; mustanad = proven/verified] 
In a masnavi Meer calls himself a python and his contemporaries as snakes,  rats and other smaller insects.  When someone asked Meer that who are the shayars today he replies, “there are two; One is Suada and other one is me” then takes a pause and says “Khwaja Meer  Dard can be counted as half”.
During medieval period the Bhakti and Sufi movement was a big cultural revolution which emphasized on the relationship of human with human and human with the God. This movement had a profound impact on the working class. By the eighteenth century the movement had lost it steam because socio political decline of the country but the central idea of unity of mankind [ “Wahdat-e-Insani”] remained prevalent amongst the adherents of this belief. This idea was opposed to any form of sectarianism in the society.
Love and heart are the two objects that are central to this idea. Love is the greatest of the feelings and heart is the greatest of the objects. Places of worship can be rebuilt if destroyed but not the heart; so what is the point of making temples and mosques by breaking hearts. A man is what his heart is. Heart is the teacher and the guide. It is central to the concept of love. Love creates, love destroys. Love is God and that’s how man (heart) is connected to God (Love) directly.  Any intermediaries in between in the form of the Mullahs or the Priests were castigated by the followers of this thought. Having love in the heart is having god in the heart; so love is divine. Love has as many forms as there are manifestations of beloved. Shayari, and in particular Ghazal, is the expression of love in words.  Love is the central theme of Shayari. Meer is the shayar from the same tradition. 
The style and emotions in modern Shayari seems to be originating from Meer. Not only will one find a Ghalib in him but also a Momin and a Daag both of whom eulogized the external beauty of the Beloved. This Style of Shayari is now known as Lucknow school of Shayari wherein the shayar gives more importance to external beauty of beloved than the internal feeling of love, Often called ‘the Kanghi-Choti’ (Comb & tresses) Shayari. Even the Ghazals of Iqbaal which are laden with philosophical thoughts also finds it origin in Meer and we find uncanny similarities not only in style but also in thoughts in many verses of the two great poets who were separated by two centuries.
Two hundred years later in 1947 when the riots engulfed Delhi and Punjab, the young Shayars left Ghalib, Iqbaal and Josh and came to Meer looking for solace. The wounded land of India and Pakistan took ‘Kuliyaat-e-Meer’ in its bosom and started looking for a balm in it. Meer was a victim and eye witness to similar tragedy when Nadir Shah and Abdali plundered India. Two centuries later these verses are still fresh and comforting. Time could not relegate it to dust, affirming greatness of Meer.The famous expositionist Muhammad Husain Azad (1833 to 1910) in his delightful book ‘Aab-e-Hayat’ has praised Meer in these words:
“Patrons valued his oeuvre with pearl and sapphire and made his name effervescent like the fragrance of the flower. He is the only blessed one, whose Ghazals are taken from one city to another as a gift by the travelers.”
Even today this fragrance is vagabond. Call it Meer’s bad luck or Urdu lover’s myopia that still there is no correct and researched compilation of ‘kulliyat-e-meer’ and those that are there are mostly impure. Now it’s another matter that few of the Meer’s couplets are on the lips of people who find solace from them during tough times of life. These couplets orally got passed on from one generation to another and in the way some shers got distorted and some shers from less talented and obscure Shayars got attributed to Meer. This also led a very simple way of understanding Meer. Meer was branded as a shayar of pain and misfortune as his popular shers are those that depict misery. Someone said that Meer’s Shayari is ‘aah’ (expression of pain) and Sauda’s is ‘waah’ (expression of delight) , though this statement is not completely untrue, many of Meer’s couplet are full of love and pleasure.
Meer probably could not disassociate himself from the time in which he lived as Ghalib and Hafiz have done. The Iran, of Hafiz, was torn with internal conflict and destroyed by the raid of Timur yet his writing depicts joy, pleasure and optimism. Ghalib was witnessing the demise of Mughal dynasty and British gaining control of India still his works oozes arrogance and rebellion.  Meer cannot smile and write in jest, it’s easier for him to get frustrated and being abusive. After Sauda, Meer has used most abusive language in his Diwan and to this someone has rightly said that Meer’s high category writings are of very high class and his low category writings are of very low class.
For Meer if Love is the reason for the creation of world but it is also the reason for destruction. Loafing is not about freedom but a sign of wretchedness and sorry state. He compares loafing not with wind but with swans. Meer cannot flirt or be chivalrous with the beloved; he either complains about his bad condition or submits himself completely admitting subjugation. He wrote what he had undergone. His writing tells the sorrow tale of his time. He says that his oeuvre is collection of pain and this pain is not personal but a collective one.
दर्हमी हाल की है सारे मिरे  दिवान  में 
सैर कर तू भी ये मजमुआ परिशानी का 

Darhami haal kee hai saare mire deewan mein
Sair kar tu bhee yeh majmuaa parishaani ka
[Darhami  = confusion, majmuaa   = some total/collection]
In a Masnavi, Meer writes, “My sorrow and sadness is famous in the town and everywhere people are talking about my capriciousness. But what can I do? Because of the pain and sorrow in my heart I behave like that. The feeling itself takes the shape of verse and my Diwan is the collection of my pain and sorrow.
 मिसरा कोई कोई कभी , मौजूं  करूँ हूँ मैं 
किस खुश सलीक्गी से जिगर खून करूँ हूँ मैं 
Misra koi koi kabhi, maujoon karoon hoon main
Kis khush salikagee se jigar khoon karoon hoon main 
[Misra  = a line of couplet/sher, maujoon = well placed ]
मुझ को शाएर न कहो मीर, की साहिब मैंने 
दर्द-ओ-गम कितने किये जमा, सो दिवां किया

Mujhko shaair na kaho meer, ki sahib maine
Dard-o-gam kitne kiye jamaa, so diwaan kia
For Meer romance as an emotion have many facets. He does not limit the romanticism to mere pleasure. Meer represents the reality. So in his Shayari, destruction of Dil (heart) is also destruction of Dilli (Delhi) and the Aashiq (Lover) is any Aadmi (man).Meer says about his Shayari that
“My Shayari is liked by a certain class of people but my conversation is with all”
So it’s not unexpected that lover in the Meer’s Shayari is as downtrodden and trampled as a common man of his time. The lover in his Shayari is not an egoist person but he is a madman. Ego comes from wealth, power or talent and madness comes from loosing these.  The ‘Lover’ of Meer, just wants a fair and respectful treatment from the beloved unlike Ghalib’s where the lover is egoist and knows his superiority over his beloved. The Lover in Meer’s Shayari is not an arrogant and conceited person that one finds in Ghalib’s.This is the salient differentiator between Ghalib and Meer. Meer’s lover is a frustrated and an insane man.
इस  दश्त  में ए दिल संभल के ही  कदम रख 
हर सम्त को दफन यां मेरी तशनालबी है

iss dasht mein aye dil sambhal ke hee kadam rakh
har samt ko yaan dafn meri tashnalabi hai
[dasht = desert, tashnalabi = thirsty  ]
कोई तुझ सा भी ए काश तुझ को मिले 
मुद्दा तो  हमको इन्तेकाम से है 
koi tujh sa bhee aye kaash tujhko mile
Mudda tou humko intekaam se hai”  
 
हाथ दामन में तेरे मारते न झुंझलाके 
अपने जामे में गर गिरेबान होता 
“haath daman mein tera maarte na jhunjhla ke
Apne jaame mein agar girebaan hota”
Meer has written many couplet which  represents the harsh realities  which at times makes the delicate nature of Ghazal heavy. Few examples:

रहते हैं दाग़ अक्सर नान-ओ-नमक की खातिर 
जीने का इसमें क्या मज़ा रहा 
“Rahte hain daagh aksar naan-o-namak kee khatir
Jeene ka iss samay mein kya maza raha “


जिनको  खुदा देते हैं सब कुछ वो ही सबको देता है
टोपी लंगोटी पास अपने, हम पर क्या इनाम रखे 
“Jinko khuda dete hain sab kuch wo hee sabko deta hai
Topi langoti paas apne, hum uss per kya inaam rakhe”

चोर उच्चक्के सिख मर्हट्ठे शाह-ओ-गदा ज़र ख्वाह हैं
चैन में हैं जो कुछ नहीं रखते, फक्र ही इक दौलत है अब 
“Chor uchhake sike marhate shah 0-gada zar khwaah hain
Chain mein hain jo kuch nahin rakhte, fakr hee ik daulat hai ab”
 
दिल्ली में आज भीख भी नहीं मिलती उन्हें 
था कल तलक दिमाग, जिन्हें ताज-ओ-तख़्त का 
“Dilli mein aaj bheek bhee nahin milti unhen
Tha kal talak dimaag, jinhe taaz-o-takht ka”
Meer has represented the exploitation and defeat of human by the victor. The victor is a tyrant and represented as beloved in his Shayari. Meer beloved is cruel, cunning, blood thirsty and a person with turpitude. The way in which Meer curse his beloved is a style of Shayari called Bashokht and Meer was the first person to compose a ‘Bashokht’ in Urdu.  No other shayar has cursed his beloved as Meer has. He calls his beloved tyrant, frugal and executioner. The black  eyes are not dark but it’s a dangerous  and fearsome black.
गर्दिश-ए-चश्म-ए- सियाहकश से जमा खातिर तुम 
भूखे प्यासे मार रखा है तुमसे उनने हज़ारों को 
“Gardish-e-chasm-e-siyahkash se Jamaa rakho khatir tum
Bhookhe pyaase maar rakha hai Tum se unne hazaaron ko”
The Beloved generally represent one of the three entities, the god, the conquerors and his own beloved.When Meer’s love is God, he complains that his beloved misbehaves with him
परदे में बदसलूकी मुझसे खुदा करे है 
“parde mein badsaluki mujhse khuda kare hai”
And he is wary of submitting himself to his love because the Love is nonchalant towards him.

कोई हो मरहम-ए-शोख़ी तेरा तो मैं पूछूँ 
की बज़्म-ए-ऐश-ए-जहां क्या समझ के बरहना की
“Koi ho marham-e-shokhi tera to main poochon
Kee bazm-e-aish-e-jahaan kya samjh ke barhanaa kee”
Meer’s beloved is also the cruel and the exploitative Kings and the blood thirsty conquerors. 
किया है खून मेरा पामाल, वो सुर्खी न छुटे 
अगर कातिल तो अपने हाथ भी पानी से धोये 
“kia hai khoon mira paamal, who surkhi na chute
Agar qaatil to apne haath bhee paani se dhoye”
( a la lady Macbeth)

जम गया खूं , काफ-इ-कातिल पे तेरा मीर जिबस 
उनने रो रो दिया कल हाथ को धोते धोते 
“jam gaya khuun, kaf-e-kaatil pe tera meer jibas
Unne ro ro dia kal haath ko dhote dhote”
When Love comes it is the cause of destruction. In trail, he leaves the ocean of blood.
मारो हो इक दो को तो हो मुद्दई कोई 
खुस्तों का उसके रोज़-ए-जजा में शौक़ क्या

“Maaro ho ik do ko to ho muddai koi
Khuston ka uske roz-e-jaza mein shauq kya”
तेरी गली से सदा ए खुशिंद-ए-आलम 
हज़ार आती हुई चारपाइयां देखीं 
“Teri gali se sada aye kushind-e-aalam
Hazaar aati hui chaarpaayien dekhi”
फिटने फसाद उठेंगे, घर घर में खून होगा
गर शहर में खिरामा वह खाना जंग आये 
“Fitne fasaad uthenge, ghar ghar mein khoon hoga
Gar sahar mein khirama, wah khana jang aaye”
The third type of beloved is Meer’s own beloved. He has always concealed her identity. For this beloved Meer’s Shayari takes the sublime form of romanticism. 
रात मजलिस में तेरी खुदा थे चुप 
जैसे  तस्वीर लगा दे कोई दीवार के साथ  

“raat majlis mein teri khuda the chup
Jaise tasveer laga de koi dewaar ke saath”
हुई फिराक में, जैसे, ख़याल मुफलिस के 
गयी है फ़िक्र-ए-परीशान, कहाँ कहाँ मेरी 

“hui firaak mein, jaise, khayaal muflis ke
Gayi hai fikr-e-parishaa, kahaan kahan meri”
वे तो खड़े खड़े मिरे घर आके फिर गए 
मैं बे-दयार-ओ-बेदिल-ओ-बेखानुमा हुआ 
“Ve tou khade khade mire ghar aake phir gaye,
Main be-dayaar-o-bedil-o-bekhaanuma hua”
Meer is not rebellious in front of this beloved . He is innocent and obedient
हम फकीरों से बे-अदाई क्या 
आन बैठे जो तुमने प्यार किया 

“hum fakeeron se beadaayee kya
Aan baithe jo tumne pyaar kia”
दूर बैठ गुबार-ए-मीर उसे 
इश्क बिन ये अदब नहीं आता 
“Duur baith Gubbar-e-Meer use
Ishq bin ye adab nahin aata”
Meer’s position is not only important in Shayari but also in his contribution toward popularization of Urdu language. The khariboli (local dialect), which is the foundation of Hindi and Urdu, looks so beautiful in Meer’s Shayari. Eighteenth century, the Century of Meer, was also marked by ascendency of Hindi and Urdu. Till then the language which was spoken in Delhi was also called ‘Rekhta’ or ‘Zabaan-e-Dehlavi’. This century was the time for decline of Persian in India. And like a retreating wave Persian left a lot of precious stones and shells on the shore which was picked up by Hindi and Urdu. These new born languages picked a lot from the 500 year old linguistic development of Persian. The tavern along with the wine, the Saqi, the jar entered the Urdu Ghazals from Persian, along with similes like Aatish-e-Gul (fire of flower), Dast-e-Subuu (the hands of wine cup), Garden-e-Meena (the neck of wine jar) and many more. Twenty two years before the birth of Meer, a shayar came to Delhi from the city of Aurangabad. His name was Wali Deccani and he was the first big shayar of the new language. The shayars of Delhi adopted his style and by 1750 when Meer was at his Zenith, this language was formalized and well accepted by the class and the mass.

Friday, 4 May 2012

Mushkil apni hui jo bood-o-baash

According to wikipedia a Mukhammas ('fivefold') refers to a type of Persian or Urdu cinquain or pentastich with Sufi connections based on a pentameter.It is one of the more popular verse forms in Tajik Badakhshan, occurring both in madoh and in other performance-genres. The mukhammas represents a stanza of two distichs and a hemistich in monorhyme, the fifth line being the “bob” or burden: each succeeding stanza affects a new rhyme, except in the fifth line, e.g., bbbbb + ccccb + ddddb and so forth. Every stanza of a mukhammas includes five lines.
  • In the first stanza, all five lines rhyme.
  • In the later stanzas, the first four lines rhyme, but the fifth line breaks the rhyme. It can be repeated, or else its rhyme can be that of the first stanza
Meer saw the destruction and moral decline of the society in which he lived. His writings are the living tale of the times he lived in. One of his mukhammas capturing the same is given below:

मुश्किल अपनी हुई जो बूद-ओ-बाश
आए लश्कर में हम बराए तलाश
आन के देखी याँ की तुर्फ़ म'आस
है लब-ए-नां पा सौ जगह परखाश
ने दम-ए-आब है ना चमचा-ए-आश्
[ बूद-ओ-बाश = lifestyle, लश्कर = army, बराए तलाश = in search of job; तुर्फ़ = difficult/ironical, म'आस = condition, लब-ए-नां  = circumference/corner of roti/bread, परखाश = injury, दम-ए-आब = a drink of water, चमचा-ए-आश् = a spoonful of cereal ]
Mushkil apni hui jo bood-o-baash
aaye lashkar mein hum baraaye talaash
aan ke dekhi yaan kee turf maash
hai lab-e-naan pa sau jagah parkhaash
ne dum-e-aab hai na chamcha-e-aash

When living became difficult
I came in army looking for a job
here I see an ironical situation
the bread is torn from all the sides
no water to drink and not even a spoonful of cereal

ज़िंदगानी हुई है सब पे बवाल
कुंजरे झिके हैं रोते हैं बक्काल
पूछो मत कुछ सिपाहियों का हाल
इक तलवार बेचे है इक ढाल
बादशाह-ओ-वज़ीर सब कल्लास

[ बवाल = madness, कुंजरे = a community that sells vegetables and fruits,झिके = to complain बक्काल = merchant, कल्लास  = poor ]

zindagani hui hai sab pe bawaal
kunjare jhike hain rote hain bakkal
poochon mat kuch sipahiyon ka haal
ik talwaar beche hai ik dhaal
baadshaah-o-wazir sab kallash

Life has become hell for all
the fruit sellers are complaining and the merchants are crying
and do not ask the condition of the soldiers
one sells his sword and another his shield
the kings and the ministers all have become poor

शोर मुत्लcक नहीं किसु सर में
ज़ोर बाकी ना अस्प-ओ-उश्तर में
भूख का ज़िक्र अक़्ल-ओ-अक्सर में
खाना जंगी से अमन लश्कर में
ना कोई रींद् ना कोई औबाश
[मुत्लcक = always, अस्प-ओ-उश्तर = horse and camel; अक़्ल-ओ-अक्सर = minority and majority; खाना जंगी = internal conflict; अमन = peace; रींद्  = drunkard,  औबाश = bad]
shor mutluck nahin kisu sar mein
zor baaki na asp-o-ushtar mein
bhookh ka zikr aql-o-aksar mein
khaana jangi se amn lashkar mein
na koi rind ne koi aubaash

there is no drive in any ones mind
there is no strength in horses and camels
all are discussing the hunger
internal conflict has led to peace
and there aren't any drunkard or baddie

लाल खेमा जो है सिपहर असास
पाले हैं रंडियों की उसके पास
है ज़ीना-ओ-शराब बेवस्वास
रोब कर लीजिए यहीं से कियास
किस्सा कोतह रईस है आय्याश
[ सिपहर असास  = whose foundation is sky/tall, ज़ीना-ओ-शराब = beauty & wine बेवस्वास = unlimited, कियास = guess;  ]
laal khema jo hai siphar asaas
paale hain randiyon kee uske paas
hai zina-o-sharaab ke waswaas
rob kar lijiye yahin se kiyaas
kissa kotah raees hai ayyaash

the high red camp
where prostitutes can be readily found
and where beauty and wine are limitless
and you can guess it from here
that the rich are the drown in pleasure

चार लुचे हैं मुस्तैद-ए-कार
दस तिलंगे जो हों, तो है दरबार
हैं वज़ी-ओ-शरीफ सारे ख्वार
लूट से कुछ है गर्मी-ए-बाज़ार
सो भी कंद-ए-सियाह है या माश
[ मुस्तैद-ए-कार = on work, तिलंगे  =soldiers, वज़ी-ओ-शरीफ = decent and respected;ख्वार = disrespect, unpopular; कंद-ए-सियाह = black jaggery; माश = cereal ]
chaar lucche hain mustaid-e-kaar
dus tilange jo hon, tou hai darbaar
hain wazi-o-sharif saare khwaar
loot se kuch hai garmi-e-baazar
so bhee kand-e-siyaah hai ya maash

four goons are alert on the work
ten soldiers if present then it becomes a court
the respected and decent are all dishonoured
the market is high because of the loot
be it black jaggery or the cereals

बस कलम अब ज़बान को अपनी संभाल
खुशनुमा कब है ऐसी काल-ओ-मक़ाल
है  कुद्हब चरख-ए-रुसियह की चाल
मसलेहत है के रहिए होकर लाल
फ़ायदा क्या ज़ो राज़ करिए फ़ाश
[काल-ओ-मक़ाल = conversation ; चरख-ए-रुसियह  = one with black mouth; मसलेहत = advice; लाल = silent ]
bas kalam ab zabaan ko apni sambhaal
khushnumaa kab hai aishi kaal-o-makaal
hai kudab charkh-e-rusiyah kee chaal
maslehat hai ke rahiye hokar laal
faayda kya zo raaz kariye faash

O Pen, keep your mouth in control
pleasant when is such conversation
the black faced is taking a crooked walk
its advisable to be silent
whats is the gain in unvailing the mask?
'Meer Taki Meer'