Sunday, 16 January 2011

Faiz - Jame gii kaise bisaat yaaraa

Yet another exceptionally melodious ghazal from Faiz's 1965 work, dast-e-tah-e-sang.  There's a popular rendition of a part of it by Farida Khanum, which merits a hear.

jamegii kaise bisaat-e-yaaraa.n ke shiishaa-o-jaam bujh gaye hai.n
sajegii kaise shab-e-nigaaraa.n, ke dil sar-e-shaam bujh gaye hai.n 

जमेगी कैसे बिसात-ए-यारां कि शीशा-ओ-जाम बुझ गए हैं 
सजेगी कैसे शब्-ए-निगारां, कि दिल सर-ए-शाम बुझ गए हैं 

جمے گی کیسے بساطِ یاراں کہ شیشہ و جام بُجھ گئے ہیں
سجے گی کیسے شبِ نگاراں کہ دل سر شام بُجھ گئے ہیں

how will the gathering of friends/lovers be organised? For the wine-glasses have dimmed themselves... 
how will the adorned night be embellished? For, (already) on evenfall, the hearts have dimmed themselves...

bisaat is literally something that is 'spread out' or 'laid out', used for goods and merchandise, as well as beds and carpets.  A specific usage is in the context of a 'game board' such as one for chess.  In this context, a 'bisaat-e-yaaraa.n' is possibly a convivial get together with friends, or a union of lovers...  

sar-e-shaam would be the onset, or the early part, of the evening. 

vo tiiragii hai rah-e-butaa.n mei.n, chiraagh-e-rukh hai na sham'a-e-vaada
kiran koii aarzuu kii lao, ke sab dar-o-baam bujh gaye hai.n 

वो तीरगी है रह-ए-बुतां में चिराग़-ए-रुख है न शम-ए-वादा 
किरन कोई आरज़ू की लाओ, कि सब दर-ओ-बाम बुझ गए हैं
وہ تیرگی ہے رہِ بُتاں میں چراغِ رُخ ہے نہ شمعِ وعدہ
کرن کوئی آرزو کی لاؤ کہ سب در و بام بُجھ گئے ہیں

such darkness (fills) the path to idols; there is neither the lamp of a face, nor the flame of a promise
call for some ray of desire, for all doors and roofs have dimmed themselves 

Indeed, what, save longing, can light these treacherously obscure paths to the Beloveds...?  They certainly wouldn't deign to provide any assistance - either by allowing their radiant faces to guide one's steps, or by dangling incandescent promises as street lamps...!
bahut sambhaalaa wafaa kaa paimaa.n magar vo barsii hai ab ke barkhaa
har ek iqraar miT gayaa hai, tamaam paighaam bujh gaye hai.n

बहुत संभाला वफ़ा का पैमां, मगर वो बरसी है अब के बरखा 
हर एक इक़रार मिट गया है, तमाम पैगाम बुझ गए हैं
بہت سنبھالا وفا کا پیماں مگر وہ برسی ہے اب کے برکھا
ہر ایک اقرار مٹ گیا ہے تمام پیغام بُجھ گئے ہیں

The pact of faithfulness (I) tried much to guard, but such was the rain this time
(that) every acknowledgement were obliterated, all messages have dimmed themselves

Nice, isn't it?  What hope can mere devotion, howsoever desperate, have against these forces of nature...?!

qariib aa ai mah-e-shab-e-gham, nazar pe khultaa nahii.n kuchh is dam
ke dil pe kis-kis kaa naqsh baakii hai, kaun se naam bujh gaye hai.n

करीब आ ऐ मह-ए-शब्-ए-ग़म, नज़र पे खुलता नहीं कुछ इस दम 
के दिल पे किस-किस का नक्श बाक़ी है, कौन से नाम बुझ गए हैं
قریب آ اے مہِ شبِ غم ، نظر پہ کُھلتا نہیں کچھ اس دم
کہ دل پہ کس کس کا نقش باقی ہے ، کون سے نام بُجھ گئے ہیں

come closer, o moon of the night of pain, (for) nothing is apparent to the eye now
whose portraits still remain on the heart, (and) which are the names that have dimmed themselves

This is a sublime one!  It sort of caps, in triumphant manner, the recurring imagery of a vision-challenging darkness that snakes like a leitmotif throughout this ghazal.  Finally, the moon that presides over the night of separation is called upon for assistance, with a request to bend a little closer... to shed a little light on the wounded heart... so the poet can see which of his memories still remain etched on the cardiac walls, after all its dark palpitations...!

bahaar ab aa ke kyaa karegii, ke jin se thaa jashn-e-rang-o-naghma
vo gul sar-e-shaakh jal gaye hai.n, vo dil tah-e-daam bujh gaye hai.n

बहार अब आ के क्या करेगी, के जिन से था जश्न-ए-रंग-ओ-नगमा
वो गुल सर-ए-शाख जल गए हैं, वो दिल तह-ए-दाम बुझ गए हैं
بہار اب آکے کیا کرے گی کہ جن سے تھا جشنِ رنگ و نغمہ
وہ گل سرِ شاخ جل گئے ہیں ، وہ دل تہِ دام بُجھ گئے ہیں

What will the spring achieve by coming now? Those (because of) whom there was celebration of colour and song
all those flowers have withered on branches, (all) those hearts have fallen dim (trapped) in snares

Hmm... has such a lovely rhythm to it, doesn't it?  So typically Faiz.  And what an endearingly petulant irritation the sher wears, at the offer by the spring to make an 'oh-so-belated' appearance!

Friday, 7 January 2011

Faiz - ye jafaa-e-gham ka chaara

Faiz wrote this short poem in 1959, while incarcerated in Lahore jail. It appears in his 1965 publication dast-e-tah-e-sang. While broadly in ghazal format, it lacks a strict radif.  Once again, it has that enjoyable metrical rhythm so typical of Faiz. 

ye jafaa-e-gham ka chaara, vo nijaat-e-dil kaa aalam
teraa husn dast-e-iisaa, terii yaad ruu-e-mariyam

ये जफा ए ग़म का चारा वो निजात ए दिल का आलम
तेरा हुस्न दस्त ए ईसा तेरी याद रू ए मरियम

یہ جفاے غم کا چارہ، وہ نجات دل کا عالم
ترا حسن دست عیسا، تری یاد رُوے مریم

This, the cure for pain's oppression; that, a state of heart's deliverance
your beauty, the hand of Christ; your memory, the face of Mariyam

Nothing too deep here, but the sher pays its tribute to the Beloved with such beauty, doesn't it?  Her glimpse, her memories, have a curative, even a messianic, ability to soothe, to redeem...  Nijaat (or, more correctly, najaat) means escape, salvation or deliverance.

dil-o-jaa.n fidaa-e-raahe, kabhii aa ke dekh hamdam
sar-e-kuu-e-dil-figaaraa.n, shab-e-aarzuu kaa aalam

दिल-ओ-जां फ़िदा-ए-राहे कभी आ के देख हमदम
सर-ए-कू-ए-दिल-फिगारां, शब्-ए-आरज़ू का आलम

دل و جاں فداے راہے کبھی آ کے دیکھ ہمدم
سرِ کوے دل فگاراں شبِ آرزو کا عالم

hearts and lives (are) sacrificed on paths; do come and see sometime, friend
the state (that prevails on every) night of desire, in the lane of the broken-hearted,

Lovely!  There is such a nicely conversational touch to that challenging invitation to the Beloved - to come and see for herself how the 'night of desire' plays out, the spectacle that prevails, in the neighbourhoods of those smitten in her ardour... 
Fidaa in its original meaning is 'to be given in ransom', but has come to be used in the general sense of being sacrificed towards something, also for being completely devoted to something.  Figaar means 'wounded', used also in the sense of 'afflicted' or 'crippled'.

terii diid se siwaa hai, tere shauq mei.n bahaaraa.n
vo chaman jahaa.n girii hai, tere gesuo.n kii shabnam

तेरी दीद से सिवा है तेरे शौक़ में बहारां 
वो चमन जहां गिरी है तेरे गेसुओं की शबनम

تری دِید سے سوا ہے ترے شوق میں بہاراں
وہ چمن جہاں گِری ہے تری گیسوؤں کی شبنم

Other than your glimpse, in your love (what) are springs
The garden (is) where the dew of your tresses has fallen

Despite expressing a fairly standard tribute to the Beloved, the sher does manage an exceptional sonorous beauty, doesn't it?  The water droplets that the Beloved shakes out of her wet ringlets determine where gardens will sprout - what indeed can spring mean in such a state, other than a glimpse of her?!

ye ajab qayaamate.n hai.n, terii rahguzar mei.n guzraa.n
ne huaa ki mar miTe.n ham, na huaa ki jii uTHe.n ham

ये अजब क़यामतें हैं तेरी रहगुज़र में गुजरां

न हुआ कि मर मिटें हम, न हुआ कि जी उठें हम

یہ عجب قیامتیں ہیں تری رہگزر میں گزراں
نہ ہُوا کہ مَر مِٹیں ہم، نہ ہُوا کہ جی اُٹھیں ہم

such wondrous calamities are lived on your lane!
to die away was not to be, to come alive was not to be

Once again, the sher itself doesn't make a particularly original point, but has an engaging aural ring to it that is recognisably 'Faiz'.  Guzraan karnaa is a multivalent expression, used in many related senses, one of which is "to pass life, to live".  Ajab, of course, means something that evokes wonder or astonishment - it shares word root with ta'ajjub, which means surprise or admiration.

lo sunii gayii hamaarii, yuu.n phire.n hai.n din ki phir se
vahii gosha-e-qafas hai, vahii fasl-e-gul kaa maatam

लो सुनी गयी हमारी, यूं फिरे हैं दिन कि फिर से 
वही गोशा ए कफ़स है, वही फ़स्ल ए गुल का मातम

لو سُنی گئی ہماری، یُوں پھِرے ہیں دن کہ پھر سے
وہی گوشہ قفس ہے، وہی فصلِ گُل کا ماتم

There - (my pleas) have been heard! So has (my) fate turned, that again
there is that same corner of the cage; that same mourning for the flowering season!

Isn't that a lovely note to sign off with?!  Deliciously ironical, the sher harks back, in that impossibly sublime second line, to the stylised ghazal images of a caged bird and a spring-deprived garden.  Gosha is a corner or a nook.