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August 9, 2009

Wanted to write about one poet here. But I have ended up sharing the words of quite a few.  But most of all..above any other..the words of Amrita Pritam. That most celebrated of  souls.

A friend shared this video and these lines  on a forum and after listening to it, I had to share it here too. This poem is such. The words are such. The rendition? By Gulzar. Mesmerising to say the least.

Take a deep breath and savour the rich baritone of Gulzar as he gives voice to her words. And then read the translation.

Mein tainu pher milan gi (I will meet you yet again)

I will meet you yet again

How and where? I know not.

Perhaps I will become a

figment of your imagination

and maybe, spreading myself

in a mysterious line

on your canvas,

I will keep gazing at you.

Perhaps I will become a ray

of sunshine, to be

embraced by your colours.

I will paint myself on your canvas

I know not how and where –

but I will meet you for sure.

Maybe I will turn into a spring,

and rub the foaming

drops of water on your body,

and rest my coolness on

your burning chest.

I know nothing else

but that this life

will walk along with me.

When the body perishes,

all perishes;

but the threads of memory

are woven with enduring specks.

I will pick these particles,

weave the threads,

and I will meet you yet again.

—-Amrita Pritam.

This poem was written in her sickbed for her partner, the painter Imroz

Translated by Nirupama Dutt and published in The Little Magazine

Give yourself a moment or two to take in this experience. Listen to the words again. This time with the translation and you will be blown away.


And now if you have been able to recover from that experience. One that moves you.Wrenches your heart with feelings that are beyond comprehension ……now , here’s the other poet whose words I originally wanted to share.

The Tree (Rukh)

Some trees look like sons to me.

Some like mothers.

Some are daughters, brides,

A few like brothers.

Some are like my grandfather,

Sparsely leafed.

Some like my grandmother

Who used to throw choori to the crows.

Some trees are like the friends

I used to kiss and embrace.

One is my beloved

Sweet. Painful.

There are trees I would like

To throw on my shoulder playfully,

There are trees I would like

To kiss and then die.

The trees sway together

When strong winds blow.

I wish I could render

Their verdant, leafy language.

I wish that I could

Return as a tree.

And if you wanted to listen to my song

I would sing it in the trees.

These trees are like my mother,

May their shade stay intact.

RukhTranslated by Suman Kashyap

English Translation of Shiv Kumar Batalvi‘s poem Rukh
I read the words of a commentor on a  forum who says ,  ”this is a poem that has stayed within me since I saw it perched on a beautiful tree outside the Department of Botany, Panjab University, Chandigarh. I have taken some very dear friends there to share it. Go read it there and it will melt you even more :)”
So going by his/her words I assume that the Deptt of Botany in Punjab University, Chandigarh has these lines etched there. Do let me know please if you have indeeed read it there. Must be an experience in itself.
But this last one below  is the one I loved most of all. Not least of all because of the way Jagjit Singh has sung it. But  because Shiv Kumar Batlavi has written some of the most beautiful and melancholic lines I have ever read or heard.
Eh Mera Geet (Punjabi)

Eh mera geet

Kise na gaana.

Eh mera geet

MaeN aape ga ke

Bhalke hi mar jaana!

Eh mera geet dharat toN maela,

Sooraj jeD puraana.

KoT janm toN piya asaahnu

Is da bol haNDHaana.

Hor kise di jaah na koi

Is nu hoTHeeN laana,

Eh taaN mere naal janmeya

Naal bahishteeN jaana.

Eh mera geet

MaeN aape ga ke

Bhalke hi mar jaana!

Es geet da ajab jiha sur,

DaaDHa darad raNjhaanaaN.

Katak maah vich door pahaaReeN

KooNjaaN da kurlaana.

Noor-paak de vele rakh vich,

ChiReeyaaN da chichalaana

Kaali raate sarkaRiyaaN toN

PaunaaN da laNgh jaana!

Eh mera geet

MaeN aape ga ke

Bhalke hi mar jaana!

MaeN te mere geet ne dohaaN,

Jad bhalke mar jaana,

BirhoN de ghar jaaeeyaaN saahnu

KabareeN labhan auna.

Sabhna saaeeyaaN ik avaaze

MukhoN bol alaana:

Kise kise de lekheeN huNda

EDa darad kamaana.

Eh mera geet

Kise na gaana.

Eh mera geet

MaeN aape ga ke

Bhalke hi mar jaana!


Eh Mera Geet – My Song

Do not sing

My song.

I must sing this song


And then die.

This song is more soiled than the earth,

As old as the sun,

For many births I have had to live

The weight of its words.

No one else has the ability

To bring voice to it.

This song was born with me,

And will die with me.

I must sing this song


And then die.

This song has a rare melody,

It is filled with pain.

It is like the shriek of cranes

Heard from distant mountains in autumn.

Or the clamor of birds in a forest,

Heard in a chaste dawn.

Or the sound of the wind flowing through high grasses

Heard on a black night.

I must sing this song


And then die.

When I and my songs

Both die,

They who inhabit separation-houses

Will seek out my grave.

With one voice,

They will declare,

“Only a very few are fated

To shoulder such pain.”

Do not sing

This song of mine.

I must sing this song


And then die.

Why this poet you ask? Why Shiv Kumar Batalvi?
Does this song below remind you of any song that you have heard lately? 🙂
and then this one ..
Another version of this poem has been sung by Rabbi Shergill:)
More information about Batalvi here
I may end with a warning to anyone envisaging an overdose of Shiv: he can be terribly Wagnerian- effusively dark and deeply sombre.
Says another blogger and I would have to agree. So dont go overboard with his poetry.
Let the words sink in. Savour them. But draw a line. And I especially say this for young impressionable minds.
Would love to hear from all of you about your favourite poets/poems/songs. And specially if they can be  shared with a translation:)
Though I know the magic and the beauty of the original gets lost in translation but for  many like me that would be better than nothing.
Do share.
Malayalam poetry, Bangla poetry, Gujarati…and so on…Would LOVE to hear from you:)
Oh! and I am not a Punjabi. Not even close 😀
But living in Delhi since the past so many years has made me understand quite a lot of it. Though the translation was still needed because the Punjabi that Batalvi uses is very different.
Plus Punjabi somehow seems familiar . Closer to Hindi. (or maybe I am wrong)
Whatever be the reason, it is a treat to be able to listen to such poetry and read the translations.
A few days back I was reading the translated poems of some poets. ANd here even though I know that the post as usual is in danger(?) of becoming as long as ever..yet I cannot resist sharing a few more poems.
K. Satchidanandan (Malayalam)

Stammer is no handicap.

It is a mode of speech.

Stammer is the silence that falls

between the word and its meaning,

just as lameness is the

silence that falls between

the word and the deed.

Did stammer precede language

or succeed it ?

Is it only a dialect or a

language itself ? These questions

make linguists stammer.

Each time we stammer

we are offering a sacrifice

to the God of Meanings.

When a whole people stammer

stammer becomes their mother tongue:

as it is with us now.

God too must have stammered

when He created Man.

That is why all the words of man

carry different meanings.

That is why everything he utters

from his prayers to his commands


like poetry.

Translated from Malayalam by the poet himself.

(This has to be my fav out of all the ones)


A Single Shooting Star

Gajanan Madhav Muktibodh (Hindi)

A single shooting star

A distant star

shoots through the blue of space

Here, someone measures its speed,
records the rise and set.

But nothingness of space,

assumed to blue, must spell

an answer inaccessible.

To stretching scope

eye muscle’s strain.

Astronomers describe

its pace and spatial shift;

account for its time concealed

in tunnels of shade.

Yet it tracks only itself,

oblivious to sketch

and sketcher, eye and scope.

With equal speed

another lone star seems

to move across the space

So in moving out of shades

of evil , reining self,

riding the void,

each star

becomes the image


its own fearless offspring—

because of this

I shall put faith in every man,

in every man’s son.

Translated from Hindi by James Mauch

Vichu this reminded me of you:)


I Want To Be Killed By An Indian Bullet

Thangjam Ibopishak Singh (Manipuri)

I heard the news long ago that they were looking for me; in the morning in the afternoon

at night. My children told me; my wife told me.

One morning they entered my drawing room, the five of them. Fire, water, air,

earth, sky – are the names of these five. They can create men; also destroy men at whim.

They do whatever they fancy. The very avatar of might.

I ask them: “When will you kill me ?”

The leader replied: “Now. We’ll kill you right now. Today is very auspicious. Say

your prayers. Have you bathed ? Have you had your meal ?”

“Why will you kill me ? What is my crime ? What evil deed have I done ?” I asked

them again.

“Are you a poet who pens gobbledygook and drivel ? Or do you consider yourself

a seer with oracular powers? Or are you a madman ?” asked the leader.

“I know that I’m neither of the first two beings. I cannot tell you about the last

one. How can I myself tell whether I’m unhinged or not ?”

The leader said: “You can be whatever you would like to be. We are not

concerned about this or that. We will kill you now. Our mission is to kill men.”

I ask: “In what manner will you kill me? Will you cut me with a knife? Will you

shoot me? Will you club me to death?”

“We will shoot you.”

“With which gun will you shoot me then? Made in India, or made in another


“Foreign made. All of them made in Germany, made in Russia, or made in China.

We don’t use guns made in India. Let alone good guns, India cannot even make plastic

flowers. When asked to make plastic flowers India can only produce toothbrushes.”

I said: “That’s a good thing. Of what use are plastic flowers without any


The leader said: “No one keeps toothbrushes in vases to do up a room. In life a

little embellishment has its part.”

“Whatever it may be, if you must shoot me please shoot me with a gun made in

India. I don’t want to die from a foreign bullet. You see, I love India very much.”

“That can never be. Your wish cannot be granted. Don’t ever mention Bharat to


Saying this, they left without killing me; as if they didn’t do anything at all. Being

fastidious about death I escaped with my life.

Translated by Robin S Ngangom


Edited to add:I was able to find a Hindi translation of the poem ‘I want to be killed by an Indian bullet’   Here it is

110 Comments leave one →
  1. August 9, 2009 7:26 pm

    I was completely blown away. I am so envious of people who have a talent for words, no other art seems as great as the one which enables you to put your deepest feelings across not only to the one you address but to thousands of people who dont even know you. I am just so envious!!

    me- hai na? I just sat there soaking in all the words…..

    I would say the same.. i am intensely and insanely envious of people who can pen words in this manner…
    like you said not just for a loved one but for so many others who will read it decades and even centuries later…

  2. August 9, 2009 7:47 pm

    awesome poems and nicely translated.
    Umm never Hindi poetry except those in textbooks. Can’t I say my favorite English poem? 🙂 Dont know much of Bong poetry too…but I can dig up one or two I like.
    And your Internet and comp are working again I guess? Welcome back!

    me- thanks:)

    ofcourse you can share an english poem too:)
    do dig ! 😀 would love to read bangla poetry too if you could get your hands on a few poems:)

    yep! comp working again:) virus probs!

  3. August 9, 2009 8:19 pm

    Me the first???? 😀

    me- so cute Kanagu 🙂 lage raho ! 😀 till you succeed 😀

  4. August 9, 2009 8:20 pm

    The last poem was awesome . 🙂 There was a time when I attempted poetry , and used to read poems . 😀 O captain my captain comes to my mind , when I think of favourites . And Madhushala .
    me- thanks:) I loved it too:)
    O Captain my Captain is an amazing one for sure!:)
    I would like to make the same request Kislay:) do please share some if not all if you would like to:)

    As for Madhushsala? Ah! twin soul? 🙂
    I am in love with the words too..I remember them all by heart:)

    For everyone who is not familiar with Madhushala here are the videos ad the translation:)

    My Aaja used to recite it when he was in a pensive mood..also have the poem recorded in his voice:)

    Here it is in Manna Dey’s voice (this is the slightly diff version..I distinctly remember a more upbeat version ..again sung by Manna Dey only….that one was more happy and dont give a damn in its tone..

    Madhushala ) translation)

    Madhushala (wiki)

    • August 10, 2009 4:33 am

      Kislay, you should write again.

    • August 10, 2009 5:38 pm

      same request from me kislay dude………………….. 😛

      • August 11, 2009 11:03 am

        @Solilo and OG

        But it turned out that I am not even average when it comes to poetry . And more importantly , that stream which was the source of all this dried up . May be , because I grew up a bit . May be , because the incredible crush I had on this girl was over .

        • Solilo permalink
          August 11, 2009 12:41 pm

          That is Khalish….Kislay. 🙂

          • August 11, 2009 12:52 pm

            What does Khalish mean ?

          • August 11, 2009 1:29 pm

            Khalish means the pain of love. Jab mohabbat mein dard hota hai to usse Khalish kahte hain

            That’s perfect to pen down some lines. 🙂
            me – beautiful!!:) the meaning is perfect Sols! the example makes it clearer:)

          • August 11, 2009 1:42 pm

            This reminds me of that beautiful ghazal by Jagjit Singh

            कौन कहता है मुहब्बत की ज़ुबाँ होती है
            ये हक़ीक़त तो निगाहों से बयाँ होती है

            वो ना आये तो सताती है एक ख़लिश दिल को
            वो जो आये तो ख़लिश और जवाँ होती है

            रूह को शाद करे दिल को पुर-नूर करे
            हर नज़ारे में ये तनवीर कहाँ होती है

            ज़ब्त-ए-सैलाब-ए-मुहब्बत को कहाँ तक रोके
            दिल में जो बात हो आखों से बयाँ होती है

            ज़िन्दगी एक सुलगती सी चिता है “साहिर”
            शोला बनती है ना ये बुझ के धुआँ होती है

            -साहिर होशियारपुरी

            Solilo has explained the meaning:)
            the word as she says is more or less used in this context only.

          • August 11, 2009 7:12 pm

            Thanks . It is a beautiful word .

    • August 11, 2009 12:57 pm


      Thanks for the links


      I wrote this when I was a dumbass in love , or rather puppy love .
      Dumb Love

      One more , an algorithmic poem to help you ascertain whether you are in love or not . When are you in love?

      Please don’t laugh too much .

      This one , for a change , not about love . Why do we cry ?

      me- no, I didnt laugh:)
      I could understand the poem as also the emotions …we all have been through the different stages I suppose..:)

      one question though:)
      did you ever tell her? and did she ever read these lines? all of them that you have written?

      liked the last poem too:)
      that is more like the Kislay I know here:)

      • August 11, 2009 2:04 pm

        Kislay, u write very well – don’t give up…I’m sure another girl will come into your life (if she hasn’t already) and you’ll have enough things to write about…But poetry should not be about only love for a woman…Look around, maybe you’ll be inspired by something…

        • August 11, 2009 7:21 pm

          There are many things I want to write about . But surprisingly that well of words is gone . The best I can come up now these days , is a string of words that make some sense , minus the music of poetry .

          “I’m sure another girl will come into your life (if she hasn’t already) and you’ll have enough things to write about” . 😀 😀 😀

      • August 11, 2009 7:14 pm

        Nope . In fact , through all the 3 years I had a crush on her , I talked to her once . And by talked , I mean , exchange a few words in a human language , not really talk . The last poem was inspired by own misery , I guess . 🙂
        me – oh! 😦
        well the question still remains for which the answer has been given by you as three smileys might I add 😉
        *cough* *cough*
        so to ask the question posed by Sraboney again.
        Is there a girl now who is inspiring some beautiful thoughts? 😉
        your muse so to speak? 😀

        • August 11, 2009 9:39 pm

          kislay dude……… 😛 things will work out dude…. 😀
          dont worry 😛 now lemme read your poems 😛

          • August 12, 2009 1:15 pm

            Things have worked out , I guess . I am long over my crush . 🙂

        • August 12, 2009 1:17 pm

          Do you think that a sane and intelligent member of the opposite sex could team up with me ? 😀
          me- yeah ofcourse! 😀
          me thinks you are hiding a lot 😀

    • August 11, 2009 2:01 pm

      I’m not too fond of poetry but ‘O Captain my captain’ is one of my favourites…

      • August 11, 2009 4:30 pm

        Bones – I love Captain O Captain too.. Probably coz of the way we were taught in school – but I love it too 🙂

  5. August 9, 2009 8:29 pm

    me first?!!

    Comment moderation is always such a suspense!! 😀

    Will read now! 😛
    me- 😆
    Pixie muah! 😀
    nahin ji …aap thoda late hain 😀

    • August 10, 2009 12:18 pm

      hmm…anyone what to take up a new challenge? Who can write the longest comment…anyone game? 😛

      me- pssstt!! Vichu? no one is even in the running 😆

      you intimidate the best of em 😀 the length of the comments is astounding 😀
      but they are WORTH it! 🙂
      seriously! totally worth it!

      • August 10, 2009 2:13 pm

        Crafty wins it rt away then na 😛
        me- 😀 😀

        • August 10, 2009 3:59 pm

          muahs swaram!!! i like the faith!!!


          *crafty looking at 2 pages word doc comment, only half way thru yet*


          me- LOL!! *Indy trying to help Crafty sneak away with the sash*

          • August 10, 2009 6:59 pm

            *vishesh looking at page no.5 … hmm..think I will keep it to 999 pages 😉
            me- 😆 Vishesh? epidemic is spreading eh? 😀

          • Solilo permalink
            August 10, 2009 11:54 pm

            Indy wins hands down with her trimmed 99 page document. 😆

            me- sshhhh lets not let the word get around… 😉
            muah!! 😀 😀

            we will just pretend that the Indy on yours was an imposter… K? 😀

  6. August 9, 2009 8:55 pm

    Each and everyone is really good Indyeah.. Loved the first one and tree very much..

    will be back to add some more 😀
    me- thanks:) glad that you liked it..

  7. August 9, 2009 9:11 pm

    Oh Indy. thank you for making my day.
    “I must sing this song


    And then die.”
    This line in particular squeezed something out of me. It will be in my mind for long.

    Thank you so much for the compilation and enlightening us of some great works. You are doing a great work in here:)

    me- That poem speaks doesn’t it? and those lines..yes..they say a lot.. something different to each one of us..depends on how one interprets them..
    glad to know that you loved them.. really glad…
    the compilation? 😀
    ah! there is this feeling you know?
    as if the words will all run away or disappear if I dont share them with someone right now..hence the urge to share immediately 🙂

    • chewmysambhar permalink
      August 13, 2009 4:21 pm

      And not just your posts but the comments you receive and your replies, ah, quite a treat to read. I love coming here:)

  8. August 9, 2009 9:25 pm

    Lovely Indy!! 🙂
    the poems are indeed soul stirring, 🙂

    the gulzar rendition is absolutely divine. 🙂
    me- hai na? I loved them all:)

    and Gulzar’s voice ? *sigh*

  9. August 9, 2009 10:12 pm

    *crafty stamping feet n complaining*

    where did my comemnt go??? WAIL!
    me 😦 you wrote one? 😦 stupid stupid WP! 😥


    see, u remember we discussed once, n i said i wanna do a post on a song i like…….NOW I SO WANNA DO IT!

    this is soooper!
    me- now you better write that post jaldi! 😀 yeah I remember the talk 😀
    and someone needs to write a dedication 😉

    and iss post ka inaam zaroooorrrr milega!!!! barabar milega!!!!!!
    looooooooooooong commentttttttttttttttt!!!!
    me- ROFL!! the dialogue cracked me up! 😀


    me to be back KRS!!!!!!!

    going to open word doc now!

    me- ((((hugs)))))) 😀

  10. August 9, 2009 10:33 pm

    You KNOW how much I LOVE poetry! Some of these pieces were not only outstanding, they were epics…in thought, depth, feeling and sensitivity!

    Oh thank you so much Indy for writing this and sharing some immortal gems with us! This has got to be my favouritest of all your posts!!
    me- oh I do I do MM! thats why I haunt your pages you see:)
    to read all the words that you pen down:)
    you made the post worth it just with your words:)
    awww thank you 🙂 I should have known that a weaver of words such as you would love the poems here ((hugs))

  11. August 9, 2009 11:18 pm

    Indyeah ji, It gives a feeling to me whenever I read your posts that I am reading the works of a literary genius. 🙂 It’s amazing how well one finds so much beauty and depth in mere words.
    And thanks for all the comments on my blog! 😀 I literally always look forward to them – they are so elaborate!
    me- when you say IndyeahJI I am tempted to look around and wonder if there is some senior lady sitting somewhere 😀 😀

    ah! no no! too generous you are with your words:) not a literary genius..not at all:)

    but the urge to share almost overwhelms me…
    the moment I read a great book, a beautiful poem or watch a movie that moves me beyond any other..I want to run out and share it immediately
    the comments on yours come simply because your posts are such a fun read!:D and then at times they make one think too( like the one that talked of material needs) 🙂

  12. August 10, 2009 12:02 am

    just read it all…..did not dare to hear Gulzar’s voice recite it Indy…

    something about his voice…monday morning tomm…i will not sleep if i hear him tonite, u know…something about his voice…

    me- I know just what you mean..his voice and the words…
    one is transported to another world…

    i have his collection he made as a tribute to RD Burman…all their work together.
    he gives a few lines before each song…i have lost my sleep over those lines spoken in his voice… i have cried over RD Burman like a kid…on losing this genius. and it’s coz how Gulzar spoke…
    me- I know.:) that you are an RD Burman fan:) a huge fan 🙂

    no, will wait till i hear Gulzar say that poem…
    me- 🙂 okay:)


    KRS, ur posts….they make my heart beat afresh u know…everytime…
    ur post is equivalent to music! it makes the heart beat, think, feel, and long after i shut the page, and switch off my PC, those words will still linger, mind will still wander… something that’s nothing short of escape from the life that i am compelled to live…into a world where i’d rather be…. where we really belong…
    me- ((((((((hugs)))))))))

    too generous you are with your words kid:)
    and I can just sigh and smile with happiness:) for, what else is there left to say?

    How do u do this? never mind..just keep it up okie?

    *very emo crafty signs off*
    me- very emo Indy running after Crafty to give her more hugs 😀

    • August 11, 2009 4:33 pm

      Crafty – You are an R D Burman fan? My husband will adopt you 🙂 He is crazy about RD Burman – and knows so much of trivia surrounding RD – I am still amazed after 8.5 years of marriage 🙂

      • August 13, 2009 3:17 am

        @ smithu: RD burman fan?? me? no smithu…i wudn’t say that.
        devotee? yes yes, that i am! 🙂

        ur hubby has trivia on him??? pliss to ask him to adopt me with immediate effect!

        my earlier office was 3 buildings away from his house. i have seen his ambassador car parked there. i begged the watchman to let me go touch it…and i did smithu!

        this was the car. when RD and Gulzar worked together for the first time, and RD had composed the music for the first song “Musafir Hoon Yaaron” and he drove to Gulzar’s house right away, which was waay after midnight, and told him to come in his car and he would share the tune as they drove….and its sung by my GOD Kishore Kumar!

        sigh…. i touched that car!!!! 😀 😀 😀

        tell me, when is ur hubby adopting me??????

  13. August 10, 2009 12:05 am

    “Of what use are plastic flowers without any fragrance?” – This Manipuri poem was excellent, brilliantly translated too. Other translations were also good. I will give you the link for an English poem written by a normal Blogger (Not me 🙂 ) and you can see and wonder how many such gem of a words are undiscovered among the normal people!!

    Destination Infinity

    me- I liked it a lot too..

    The poem by that blogger is amazing!
    I mean the sheer play of words..yes poetry is perversion..:) as she says…

    its contrary ..its obstinate…and sometimes its also the only way left to express all that churns inside..

  14. August 10, 2009 12:06 am

    the post i wanna do is a Rabbi Shergill Song!!!!!
    me- muaah! yeah I know 😀 do it ASAP! 😀 want to read it 🙂

  15. August 10, 2009 12:16 am

    Favorite poet..errrr…ummmmm..!! 😦
    I always used to score terribly in the poem section of my english paper in school. 😦
    And Hindi poems…”sab upar se nikal jaata tha!”
    But I used to like one poet…William Wordsworth! I could comprehend his writings. 🙂
    me- LOL! okay 😀
    I used to love the Hindi poems the most 🙂 and the English ones too have stayed with me..
    Wordsworth? yes beautiful lines that come to mind

    specially these most of all that remind me of a friend 🙂

    William Wordsworth
    For oft, when on my couch I lie
    In vacant or in pensive mood,
    They flash upon that inward eye
    Which is the bliss of solitude;
    And then my heart with pleasure fills,
    And dances with the daffodils.

    and these

    A Character
    William Wordsworth

    I marvel how Nature could ever find space
    For so many strange contrasts in one human face:
    There’s thought and no thought, and there’s paleness and bloom
    And bustle and sluggishness, pleasure and gloom.

    There’s weakness, and strength both redundant and vain;
    Such strength as, if ever affliction and pain
    Could pierce through a temper that’s soft to disease,
    Would be rational peace–a philosopher’s ease.

    There’s indifference, alike when he fails or succeeds,
    And attention full ten times as much as there needs;
    Pride where there’s no envy, there’s so much of joy;
    And mildness, and spirit both forward and coy.

    There’s freedom, and sometimes a diffident stare
    Of shame scarcely seeming to know that she’s there,
    There’s virtue, the title it surely may claim,
    Yet wants heaven knows what to be worthy the name.

    This picture from nature may seem to depart,
    Yet the Man would at once run away with your heart;
    And I for five centuries right gladly would be
    Such an odd such a kind happy creature as he.

    I also read one poem in Bengali when I was in 7th standard which I keep repeating till date.
    “Momamachi Momachi..Kotha Jaaye chi? Ude jaache..udi jaache..udi jaache!”
    Any guess..what does it mean? 🙂
    me- I have no clue though I had a good time trying to pronounce the words:) I love this beautiful language:)
    maybe some Bengali friends can help here:)

    Well…coming back to this lovely post. All the poems are amazing. Yes. Actaully amazing! I really liked the first one by Amrita Pritam. I actually read it thrice! No..I understood in one go..but I liked it so much that I read it thrice 🙂
    me- yes I understand what you mean..the poem is such…makes one yearn to listen to it again and again..

    I loved the last one as well. Truly Indian! I am sure you also write poems…if I am rite..then would request you to share those poem na. If its there in the archives..lemme know. Would love to read yours.
    me- yes the last one is amazing:)

    thank you for the words..though I can say with all honesty that my poems are not worth reading:) they are rambles more than anything else..

    • Amrit permalink
      August 12, 2009 3:15 pm

      Wow..I really like “A Character” from WW. Wonderful words!

      Well..that bengali poem is about a honey bee. Momachi means honey bee. So its like “Honey bee..honey bee..where are you going?”. 🙂 🙂

      Okay! You should sometime let the readers decide how you write. 🙂
      I can undoubetdly say that it will be real worth reading. share your poems.

  16. August 10, 2009 3:07 am

    Also thanks for those amazing words in Ashwathy’s blog! 🙂
    me- you are most welcome:)

  17. August 10, 2009 4:01 am

    Oh my! This is a delight like no other! I am bowled over! My fav in here would be .. “My song” Just amazing!
    me- thanks WInnie:) I simply grin when I see poetic souls going ah! and oh! here:) fro, since I am not one the best I can do is share and read the words on your space and the space of so many other poetic souls:)

    For now this is the poem that haunts me. I dunno how many times I have read this.. and yet this speaks to me in its minimalism!


    In a field
    I am the absence
    of field.
    This is
    always the case.
    Wherever I am
    I am what is missing.
    When I walk
    I part the air
    and always
    the air moves in
    to fill the spaces
    where my body’s been.

    We all have reasons
    for moving.
    I move
    to keep things whole.

    me- beautiful Winnie! absolutely beautiful and as you say so rightly..the beauty lies in its minimalism…
    the last lines are just amazing!
    We all have reasons
    for moving.
    I move
    to keep things whole.

    thank you so much for sharing it here

  18. August 10, 2009 4:10 am

    Oh and the last one.. have read the translation before. Made me cry then. Beautiful isnt it ?
    me- yes it definitely is

  19. August 10, 2009 4:21 am

    Khalish: What a beautiful title! 🙂

    ye kis khalish ne phir is dil mein aashiyaanaa kiyaa
    phir aaj kis ne sukhan ham se gaayebaanaa kiyaa

    ~Faiz Ahmed Faiz
    me- you noticed?:)
    it seemed to be the most apt..

    wah! Faiz and the lines written by him as only he can …
    beautiful as ever!
    another connection here 🙂
    you know what I mean:)

    Khalish is a word that encompasses so much…

  20. August 10, 2009 4:32 am

    You know when I wrote ‘The Road not taken’ on my blog, I first thought about Amrita Pritam and Gulzar’s this video and youtubed it but then I went ahead with Rahul Sharma’s musical notes as I found that apt for my post.
    me- need I say anything?:)
    uncanny is the only word I have 😀 and eerie too is another 😀

    So I am pleasantly smiling at the coincidence and loving it. 🙂
    me- I had to write this right now 😀 I am just gaping and wondering about the way our minds work! 😀 I mean to think of the same video, the same author ..these lines!? AMAZING is the word! XOXOXO 😀

    I love reading how people analyze and interpret words written by another person. It just shows how differently our minds work.
    me- yes.. the same words can be interpreted in so many ways by so many people!
    so very true Solilo!

    and I think who we are.. where we come from…of all that has shaped us , all the baggage we carry from our past.. all of that has to play a major part in our interpretation of any poem or for that matter any word

    The first time I heard ‘ajj din chadeya’, I youtubed and found out about Siv Kumar Batalvi and listened to it too. Then listened to the movie song 26 times at a go. It is my current favorite, Abhi.
    me- yes I know:) you told me 🙂 and I remember that after you shared the link I then listened to the LOve Aak KAl version and fell in love with it too:)

    “I may end with a warning to anyone envisaging an overdose of Shiv: he can be terribly Wagnerian- effusively dark and deeply sombre.”

    What a better companion for solitude, I ask? 😀
    me- 😀 ah! yes! what else indeed?

  21. August 10, 2009 4:42 am

    When it comes to poems, I have read mostly Hindi and English. Haven’t ventured into regional poetry.

    You asked about favorite poets. You already know my list. 🙂 I have mentioned it on my blog.

    me- yes I do:)
    me too Soli 🙂 its mostly Hindi and English poetry here too:) and translated versions dont really count …have been trying to learn new languages and boy! is it tough!

    I had plans of doing a post on Kamala Das (Kamala suraiyya/Madhavikutty) when she passed away couple of months back. My idea was to draw parallels between her and my favorite Mahadevi Varma. Two modern day Meeras and feminists in their own way.

    me- please do a post sometime:)
    would love to read it..

    I have not read many of Kamala Das’s works… I have read her autobiography and a book by her whose name I cant remember right now..

    Mahadevi Verma?
    ah! somehow when all is said and done , these lines of hers have burrowed their way into my heart:)

    तुम मुझमें प्रिय! फिर परिचय क्या

    तुम मुझमें प्रिय! फिर परिचय क्या
    तारक में छवि, प्राणों में स्मृति,
    पलकों में नीरव पद की गति,
    लघु उर में पुलकों की संसृति,
    भर लाई हूँ तेरी चंचल
    और करूँ जग में संचय क्या!

    तेरा मुख सहास अरुणोदय,
    परछाई रजनी विषादमय,
    वह जागृति वह नींद स्वप्नमय,
    खेलखेल थकथक सोने दे
    मैं समझूँगी सृष्टि प्रलय क्या!

    तेरा अधरविचुंबित प्याला
    तेरी ही स्मितमिश्रित हाला,
    तेरा ही मानस मधुशाला,
    फिर पूछूँ क्या मेरे साकी!
    देते हो मधुमय विषमय क्या?

    रोमरोम में नंदन पुलकित,
    साँससाँस में जीवन शतशत,
    स्वप्न स्वप्न में विश्व अपरिचित,
    मुझमें नित बनते मिटते प्रिय!
    स्वर्ग मुझे क्या निष्क्रिय लय क्या?

    हारूँ तो खोऊँ अपनापन
    पाऊँ प्रियतम में निर्वासन,
    जीत बनूँ तेरा ही बंधन
    भर लाऊँ सीपी में सागर
    प्रिय मेरी अब हार विजय क्या?

    चित्रित तू मैं हूँ रेखाक्रम,
    मधुर राग तू मैं स्वर संगम,
    तू असीम मैं सीमा का भ्रम,
    काया छाया में रहस्यमय।
    प्रेयसि प्रियतम का अभिनय क्या
    तुम मुझमें प्रिय! फिर परिचय क्या

    the lines just make me sigh 🙂
    your observations about the feminism inherent in their writings and being modern day meeras is just amazing! because it is so very true…now I am really curious about your post:)
    PLEASE do write it:)
    I am already looking forward to it:)

    • August 12, 2009 3:28 am

      Abhi, sadly! even I have read only limited work of Kamala Das. I love that poem of Mahadevi Varma. From whatever I read, it amazes me how both these women totally worshipped their ‘priyatam’ and yet defied society and its rules in their own ways. Varma was born in a time when it was difficult for women to even step out of the house but she did and lived her life the way she wanted. Same with Kamala Das/Madhavikutty. Both women amaze me and that’s when I thought about the comparison. Will write it one day, Abhi.

  22. August 10, 2009 7:05 am

    All the poems are heart wrenching esp. the last one by the Manipuri poet…This is an amzing collections, Abhilasha!
    me- the last one is really something na?
    thanks Sraboney..

  23. August 10, 2009 7:10 am

    Indy: Too good post. The opening poem , specially the pain in those wordings glued me to read the entire post in single breath. Jagjit Singh has always been my most favorite performer. His silken voice and his poetry is just mind blowing.
    Frankly, i had never explored poetry in any other language. But the last poem and its translation that you posted makes me want to definitely explore this area of poetry too.
    me- welcome here Parul:)

    yes that poem bY Amrita Pritam and the rendition by Gulzar…
    one wants to listen to it again and again…

    I love all of Jagjit SIngh’s ghazals too..
    he brought the ghazals to the common man…one could understand his singing..
    so many shayars…known and unknown have become household names and have become immortal through his singing..
    the poetry in other languages be it from India or from the world is just amazing and wonders how any one person can even begin to discover it all in one lifetime:)

  24. August 10, 2009 9:09 am

    What can one say.You have scored.It takes a lot of time and inclination to write such post.
    me-thank you Sir:)

  25. August 10, 2009 10:00 am

    I really takes mind reader to translate, songs exactly.
    The way the songs are written and their meaning too good!
    me- I agree. The translator’s job is a tough one. Toughest I would say. To translate and yet not to lose the charm , the essence of the write?
    no ordinary person can do it I think:)

    samjhaye nahi samjhta yeh geet sirf mere liye hai
    Dimag pe zor lagale jitna yeh bol maine likhe hai
    jis din tuhye samazh aaye, yeh sab tere liye hai
    me- wah! your lines? 😀

    • August 11, 2009 9:17 pm

      I wrote it, those lines for this post!
      me- that is a nice surprise
      because they are really nice!
      you have a poet inside do you?
      do you write poetry then?:)

  26. August 10, 2009 10:51 am

    Let me confess, I find it really difficult to read poetry , mainly because the second I read an inspirational line , I can’t read any more , I have to write , I go over the moon , its too much to hold something so good to your self. Every line in a poem is worth a poem in itself 🙂

    me- true:) beauty has a way of doing that..whether it is the beauty of a poem of anything else…
    it inspires..

    But the poem which inspired me to start writing poems , the way I do , is The ode to the west wind by Shelley. Let me share how I started writing poetry , in the way I do today.
    me- that one by SHelley is a classic 🙂 and with good reason too:)

    Some how poetry had always been something which I enjoyed. I remember writing poems in my junior classes, based on the same themes as the poems in my English text book. I used to write once in a blue moon , sometimes I would not write for even about a year or so. But then one depressed sunny afternoon , as I sat down next to my friend , with a bit of poetry in my mind(along with other things , which caused the depression) , A song came to my mind , more particularily a line of the song – baratha gauravaya namaha…suddenly I started writing , without even being aware of it.
    me- what is the meaning of baratha gauravya namaha?Homage to India’s greatness? is this a poem by Subramaniya Bharathi?

    The style was completely different from the way I use to write about. I felt a sense of belonging – to India , like never before. Though belonging to a country is just a perception and one identity of mine , some how this identity seemed to have gripped me. My hand led me into writing , it dragged me , before I knew , I had written something , which changed my life – the way I saw myself. It was the moment I know I will forever be grateful for. It showed me a part of me , which I never thought existed. It made me realize how much I actually am attached to my identity as an Indian , how ever abstract the concept may seem. Who knows what would have happened if not for that moment – I could have been anything , who knows what decisions I would have made.
    me- will simply smile and say I know:)

    I know I have moved on to different themes , I know that what I write can be viewed as something bland , uninspiring . I have come across people who say that , a “kid” cannot feel these things- but the truth is inevitable , the only time I really feel attached to anything with a string is when I am writing. Other than that , the world to me exists and I exist.I can think about the things which take place. I am attached to a few materialities , but nothing to me is more important than what I write , it is my sense of an “I” .
    me- then the quote on the right in the sidebar is for you Vishesh:) Rainer seems to have written it for you:)

    And no I do not sit and write poems, poems keep coming to me , in my dreams , in moments of happiness ,in moments of sorrow , in moments of nonchalant..It is like a language to me , you can say it is ugly , crass and whatever you want , but to me it is the most beautiful thing , it is the chord which attaches me to myself , you can call me heretic , being burnt at your stake doesn’t anger me any more , like it used to , I rather be burnt than be alive to see you try and burn the essence of me.

    me- one’s words do not have to be appreciated by anyone Vishesh..though of course praise never hurts..but words are most of all for our own selves na?
    so keep writing without worrying about what anyone else thinks..
    there has been no writer in the world without his/her share of critics…

    you can be no different:) much as you want often as you want to:)
    you write for your own happiness:)
    and if someone doesnt understand what you write or complains then maybe they have not gone through the same experiences as you have…

    we are all different…we interpret things the way we see them..
    for someone to be able to like and understand your words just the way you do would mean that he/she would have had to have lived a life EXACTLY like yours:)
    each moment..each joy..each sorrow

    not possible is it?:)
    so just enjoy this process of writing:)
    and dont give a thought to who cares and who doesnt:)

  27. August 10, 2009 10:58 am

    Indyeah, as soon as I saw this post of poetry, I thought, I will skip it!
    me- 😀 😀 I can understand that sentiment Sandhya 😀

    Then read Amrita Pritam’s poem. The first thought was not very good. Then as you said in the end of the poem, I ran my eyes on the lyrics alongwith Gulzar’s voice…the meaning registered and I loved it!
    me- 🙂 yes on its own the poem touches but one is lost in trying to find the meaning..and then with the translation ?
    ah! that is when it hits us with full force!:)

    I am sure, you must have gone to the Punjab University and read the ‘Rukh’ poem under the tree, that is mentioned here!

    me- no I havent been there Sandhya:) but I wish I could:)
    I liked these two – translations were not looking like translations.
    me- yes the translations were good:)
    a good translation is hard to come by and requires painstaking effort …I can barely imagine

    Will comeback again after reading the rest. You are incredible, Indyeah…
    me- sure:)
    awww(((hugs)) the Incredible Indyeah line reminds me of the Incredible Indyeah ads on TV 😀

  28. August 10, 2009 11:20 am

    That is a very fine collection of some great poems from great poets, Abhilasha. Although I do not read poetry very often, I have a little exposure to “shayari”, and I feel that there is no better expression of human feelings, particularly of love and pathos.
    me- thank you Sir.

    Sir you are being modest..
    having known you here I am reasonably sure that you have had more than a little exposure to shayari 🙂

    I agree it is a most beautiful, soul stirring form of expression.. do share some more Sir:)

    As to Shiv Kumar Batalvi, I remember one poem of his, because it had been sung with great feeilng by Asa Singh Mastana. Jagjit Singh has also sung it, but his version lacks something. Here is that poem:

    Mainu tera shabab lai baitha,
    Rang gora gulab lai baitha,
    Mainu tera shabab lai baitha,
    Rang gora gulab lai baitha

    Kini Piti te kini baaki eh,
    Kini Piti te kini baaki eh,
    Mainu eho hisaab lai baitha,
    Mainu eho hisaab lai baitha

    Wel jad vi mili hai farza taun,
    Wel jad vi mili hai farza taun,
    Tere mukh di kitaab lai baitha,
    Tere mukh di kitaab lai baitha

    Mainu jad vi tusi ho yaad aye,
    Mainu jad vi tusi ho yaad aye,
    Din dihaade sharab lai baitha,
    Din dihaade sharab lai baitha

    Changa hunda je sawaal na poochda,
    Changa hunda je sawaal na poochda,
    Mainu tera jawaab lai baitha,
    Mainu tera shabab lai baitha

    I could not find a great translation on the net, so I have attempted one, with some effort:

    Your youthful beauty has sunk me
    Your fair rosy skin has sunk me
    Your youthful beauty has sunk me
    Your fair rosy skin has sunk me

    How much have I drunk, how much is left
    How much have I drunk, how much is left
    This one calculation has sunk me
    This one calculation has sunk me

    Free of duties whenever I have got
    Free of duties whenever I have got
    The book of your face I have taken to
    The book of your face I have taken to

    Whenever I have remembered you
    Whenever I have remembered you
    Liquor in broad daylight I have taken to
    Liquor in broad daylight I have taken to

    Would have been better if I had not asked
    Would have been better if I had not asked
    Your answer has sunk me
    Your answer has sunk me

    The original rendition by Mastana is not easily traceable. But here is one recorded in 1980 and available on You Tube:

    me-thank you for sharing the video too Sir.

    me- thank YOU so much for the translation Sir! It is really appreciated:)
    or else many like me would not have been able to understand the words…

    • August 10, 2009 7:53 pm

      I think the order of the stanzas has got mixed up. ‘How much I have drunk…..calculation has sunk me” is second last, just before “Would have been better”

      Also, in the first stanza, the second and fourth lines, which are identical, would be more accurate as :
      “Colour fair, rose has sunk me
      Colour fair, rose has sunk me”
      me- your translation too is beautiful Sir:) I can only wonder about the original:)

  29. August 10, 2009 11:20 am

    A Single Shooting Star
    Gajanan Madhav Muktibodh (Hindi)

    A single shooting star

    A distant star

    shoots through the blue of space

    Here, someone measures its speed,
    records the rise and set.
    But nothingness of space,

    assumed to blue, must spell

    an answer inaccessible.

    To stretching scope

    eye muscle’s strain.

    Astronomers describe

    its pace and spatial shift;

    account for its time concealed

    in tunnels of shade.

    Yet it tracks only itself,

    oblivious to sketch

    and sketcher, eye and scope.

    With equal speed

    another lone star seems

    to move across the space

    So in moving out of shades

    of evil , reining self,

    riding the void,

    each star

    becomes the image


    its own fearless offspring—

    because of this

    I shall put faith in every man,

    in every man’s son.

    Translated from Hindi by James Mauch

    Vichu this reminded me of you:)


    just love this poem…“I shall put faith in every man , in every man’s son”…just magical! I can almost feel it , the optimism the author sees , the metaphor .. I almost in tears…

    ” with equal speed another lone star” ha we aliens are few and far between in this world of humans …

    the world moves a yard faster,
    As we stand and talk together.
    Our paths do across here,
    Between east and west,
    Heavens and the nether.

    Egos seems to cease,
    Our spirits seems so free.
    For a few moments in time’s
    Infinity , we do speak
    Our hearts and our souls
    Do know what they seek.

    How I wish this will be forever,
    Yet , our gravity is such , never
    Can we stop , to admire,
    For the moments we are one,
    Just seem to run;

    How I wish , this love which flows,
    This love which is serene and joyous
    Will last forever; And it does in my memory,
    I return when every I lost and need me.

    The way you move and say,
    I do not need to see or hear,
    But I still do , oh! vanity,
    For if i do not , i threaten my sanity.

    I know I am me ,
    When I see you.
    I know I am me,
    When with I can feel you.
    I know the moment is fluid
    And that it will evaporate,
    But kind is this fate,
    Which does give me a break,
    From life’s paths so unkind,
    So blase , so ruthless .

    You are a star,
    You are a girl,
    You are a flower,
    You are a rocky swirl.
    You are the beauty I seek,
    Within me , the invisible hues;
    You are my sense of life,
    You are breath of feel,
    You are my knowledge,
    You are my thoughts,
    I do not know if you are real,
    For once you disappear,
    You seem to be gone forever.

    One day I wish I can meet you,
    So that I do know, I am alive.
    What if I fooled myself into living?
    What if I forced myself into breathing?

    I cannot face such a stark moment,
    For the verses I write are too benevolent.
    If not for the boxes within words,
    If not for the walls of metaphors
    And the sly euphemism of order,
    I would be a cruel being , with a dry heart,
    Where life and death both fear to be a part.

    Be with me forever,
    I know you cannot.
    But at least give me light,
    When I fail to see mine.
    Give me belief,
    When I am stricken with grief ,
    Give me love,
    When the world does shove.

    What you are I do not know,
    Maybe you are one, who wear masks
    And crosses me again and again;
    Maybe you are my angle , a guardian,
    maybe I am nothing but your scion;

    Show me , teach me,
    And let me be me;
    If not for you ,
    My dreams do neither haunt
    And i would certainly be lost,
    In the world’s gait less taunts.

    I can feel you in me,
    Please do come alive,
    I want to see life;
    Please do appear,
    Before in darkness I disappear.

    When I see light ,
    I know nothing can die.
    When I see you,
    I know I need not fight.
    When I know you ,
    I know what is right.
    When we are together,
    The world not perish,never;

    We are one,
    Together under the sun.
    Let this moment
    Remain in me,
    To remind me
    And set me free.

    Oh! thee ,
    Now I can see;
    Hold me ,
    Don’t let go ,
    I fear of a day
    Where in I forget you ,
    I fear of the night,
    When I can’t see you;

    And infinity can cannot
    Be without one or zero-
    That one can be me or
    Any;But more importantly,
    It is you and me , together,
    you are me and me you , dear.

    You smile and I relish,
    May we never perish.

    The light shines the brightest

  30. August 10, 2009 11:32 am

    That was awesome… though i like poetry, i can’t remember them! 🙂

    me- thanks Sakhi:) I too can remember very few:) it would be a tough thing to remember all of them 🙂

  31. shraddha permalink
    August 10, 2009 11:40 am

    i ADORE amrita preetam…

    do visit me sometime too…miss ya..

    me- you do?:)
    oh yes! def will come over:) have been missing in action in the blogworld:)
    it is taking a while to cover my entire blogroll:)

  32. August 10, 2009 12:24 pm

    Indy, u feeling Mischievous 😛

    me – who me? 🙄
    whatever gave you that idea? 🙄

    • August 10, 2009 2:23 pm

      God! Am i cing things then 😛 Ur Punkymoods avatar 😛

      OOps! :mrgreen:

    • August 10, 2009 7:11 pm

      Indi just noticed the no. of smileys in your posts have gone down!! 😛 My where is the mischievous smile? *lets get that chicken killer*

      me- 😆
      smileys according to the mood of the post is the mantra 😀

      OG has gone back to being a vegetarian 😀

      *atleast for the time being*
      till the next unfortunate chicken crosses his path * 😆

      • August 11, 2009 9:35 pm

        hehehehehehehehhe 😛 he is back to being a ghaas phoos eater till nov 😛
        damn, I never should have taken this vow………….. 😛 😛 😛

        me- 😆 😆
        Thank god for the vow..atleast some animals will still be alive by the end of it 😆

  33. August 10, 2009 2:23 pm

    Me bk after reading n assimilating [thoda thoda] each one of them 😛

    Gulzar rendition … wow wow!

    Indy, each time u come up with such a gem of a post!

    Wow, am feeling like taking out that book of old Kannada poems n reading them over again n again!!

    So many of them are on my mind rt nw – wil be bk with the translations!!!

    ‘Mein tainu pher milan gi’ is beautiful – loved it loved it loved it!

    me- wow is an apt word for the Gulzar Amrita Pritam combination:)

    you have a book of Kannada poems? PLEASE share:) yes yes with translations a:) waiting 🙂

    come back soon:)

    the first one I have been listening to again and again..ever since a friend shared it on his space..

  34. August 10, 2009 3:02 pm

    I thought that ‘Eh Mera Geet’ was particularly moving, though very melancholy.

    Wonderful choices, Abhi!
    me- thanks a lot Manju:)
    yes Eh mera geet is one of my favourites too:)

  35. sagarone permalink
    August 10, 2009 4:01 pm

    Well, well, well…. What can I say? Amrita Pritam and Gulzar is a deadly combination. Although I am not too much into poetry, I found it moving.

    me- deadly combination:)
    yes would completely agree:)

    the first one moves specially when one thinks of the background against which it was written..stirring to say the least..

  36. August 10, 2009 5:37 pm

    woah…… this was some heavy reading at 5 in the morning my time 😀 ……….
    me- 😆

    and who told you to sit at the comp at that unearthly hour?
    Sacrilege is what it is! two night owls Sols and Indy will tell you all about it:)

    loved every single one especially the last one…………. must have been a really brave guy……

    I have never had an interest for poetry……….. dont know why 😛 😛 😛 😛

    it is always stories, short stories which i love………….

    me- and you are brilliant at writing them !!! 🙂 its a pleasure reading your stories:)

    buttu yesssu, greattu posttu indyeahu……………… 😛
    me- 😆 this is OG lingo *sigh* dont even ask how but by now I have even started understanding this mad language of yours.. 😛 😛

    loved it 😛
    the diversity that we have is just brilliant!!!!!! that is what i love best !!
    me- ah! the one thought that was in my mind all the time that I was compiling the post…
    the diversity..the sheer diversity blew my mind away…

    I kept many gems do we have here? all confined to certain narrow spaces for want of a good translation?

    • August 11, 2009 9:38 pm

      I agree indyeah….. so much of indian poetry and writing is hidden from public because of language issues………
      my own great grandfather was a notable poet in his days and wrote much of his stuff in telugu and sanskrit….. alas, but I can hardly read telugu nor can I read sanskrit…. one of the reasons, I want to learn these languages……. 😛
      me- awesome! he was a poet!?
      wow! now I know the reason behind your fascination for these languages and for history:) I am amazed!!!

      but many organisations are doing a good job in translating them….. thus enabling aam people to read them……….
      me -yes thanks to all those people who are doing such an awesome job:)

      andu yessu, Oggu lingo willu alwaysu worku 😛 hehehehehehehe 😛
      me- 😆 yes only for those who are as insane as you are 😛 😛

  37. August 10, 2009 7:46 pm

    amazing ones Indyeah! want to read them again and again!
    me-:) yes they are arent they?:)

  38. August 10, 2009 10:31 pm

    The beauty of poetry often gets lost in translation which is why it always nice if you understand the original language in which it is written.
    me- yes… i so agree but for those such as me the translated works are the only option:)

    Having said that, I must admit that though I’m not a Punjabi-speaker, I loved Gulzar’s rendition of Amrita Pritam’s poem!

    me- 🙂 yes me too:)

  39. August 10, 2009 11:59 pm

    yes, poem was very nice. Heartfelt.
    me-:)) video bhi dekho:)

    I haven’t yet watched the videos in the post. I will, soon.
    me- please do listen to the first one:)

    Do you read Little Magazine regularly?
    me- nope..not regularly…once in a while only…though plan on getting the subscription now..

  40. August 11, 2009 1:16 am

    I wanted to share this poem!
    me- ”THANK YOU” Winnie and I say this in quotes because I want to thank you so very much for leading me to her poem , her posts, her blog..
    I am still in awe of all that I have read there.. I kept going to older posts and kept wondering about the treasure I had stumbled on to(courtesy you)

    I am blogrolling her simply to be able to read all that she writes.
    its been ages since I have read such words from someone who seems to be like us..and yet so very unique.. ..( I think she is as her blog name says..mystical rose indeed!).

    Oh and yes.. my fav of harivansh rai bacchan.. I once did a translation of that ..

    me- I loved this poem Winnie..brought back memories of school days..we ad a teacher who used to share the meaning with us so passionately:)

    you have done a pretty commendable job in translating the poem Winnie:)
    seriously:) Fist Madhushala and now this one:) we have a lot of Harivansh Rai fans here:)

    • August 11, 2009 5:11 pm

      Oh Indy I know what you mean! She is a gem among jewels! I have done the same thing! Read every little post 🙂 And I have to thank rauf for that! He was the one who gave me this link 🙂
      me- rauf? now he is another amazing soul! 🙂 thank you to him too then:)

      I have few favorites in Marathi too. Esp santwanis.. when I get time, I shall certainly translate some!!
      me- please do:)

      Got to thank my room mates to have helped me learn n appreciate marathi literature. Infact I am partial to them. May be because I could relate more to them then my own mother tongue!
      me- yes..when one finds a joy and wonderful teachers ,the toughest of languages seem easy 🙂
      share marathi words too please:)
      I wish I had some bengali friends with me twenty four seven to teach me that beautiful language 😀

  41. August 11, 2009 4:47 am

    amazing collection, Indy! ThE last one(Indian Bullet) is by far the best I thought, though all were just so beautiful. My fav Bangla poet is Joy Goswami. My Fav poem from his collection is “Meghbalika`r roop kotha”(Tales from the God of Clouds), which I shall someday translate and put up on my blog.
    Thanks for this post. Had a fabulous time reading.
    me- ah yes! Alongwith MM yours is another such space that has those words that speak to one:)
    the last one is something really..I so agree..

    Joy Goswami?
    *off to google* 😀 😀

    and I will be eagerly make that VERY eagerly waiting for that post 🙂
    ((((((((((((((hugs))))))))))))) I know it will take time because a translation requires effort:)

  42. Dev permalink
    August 11, 2009 8:12 am

    Bahut lambi lambi posts likhti hain aap Indy jee. 🙂
    me- *sigh*
    *Indy wondering if its too late to strangle Dev* 😛 😛

    Thanks for taking time to share all these wonderful poems.
    me- you are most welcome:)
    absolutely had to:)

    I did my engineering in Punjab and most of the guys in my college (cant say about girls as I never spoke with adored Shiv Kumar Batalvi. He is like a legend in Punjab. I know little about his work though. But I really love his song, ek kudi jida naam mohabbat, sung by Rabbi. It found it’s way in my most favorite punjabi songs tag I did on my blog sometime back. As you mentioned, that song in Love Aaj kal (aaj din chadeya tere rang varga) was lifted from his song. Though I wonder if they gave him the credit for that song.
    me- ah! so you do know all about Batalvi and his poems and what they are all about:)

    all the students did?:)
    I am glad to know that:)
    and a legend in Punjab? ah! kind of was expecting to hear that…I mean who wouldn’t be a fan of his words?
    for, his words do have that magical appeal …one can only wonder about the original (saying this for the umpteenth time but I always feel sad that the originals are out of my reach)

    I also absolutely love the version sung by Rabbi:)
    Rabbi is another genius..the way he sings… and breathes life into words…
    you did a tag?
    please do provide a link or else I am as it is going to dig into the archives 😀

    • Solilo permalink
      August 11, 2009 12:52 pm

      Yes! Batalvi is given credit.

    • Dev permalink
      August 12, 2009 4:08 am

      *Indy wondering if its too late to strangle Dev*
      lol..oh my God, this girl is crazy.
      me- you mean you didnt know? 🙄


      “ah! so you do know all about Batalvi and his poems and what they are all about:)”

      Well, as I said, Iam not much aware of his work (both poetry and prose), though I do know that he wrote a lot about lost/unrequited love..perhaps that’s the reason he found echo among youth. And I think he must be very talented, as he was youngest ever to get Sahitya Akadami award. I think you can find his original poetry in Punjabi only or perhaps there might be punjabi to hindi translations..check on internet/youtube..
      Well, there is this one real life interview of him available on you friend showed me last year..let me see, if it’s still there..ya here you go..He even sings one of his poems in this can see from his talk here that he was quite fatalistic and even suicidal in his wonder he died 2-3 years after this interview, all of 36-37 I guess..

      me- haan that is why I quoted those words from that blogger that his poetry is Wagnerian to say the least.. lil kids and young minds stay away please:)
      thanks for the video link to the interview:)

      “please do provide a link or else I am as it is going to dig into the archives”

      Here you go:
      me- good ! 😀 coming right over 😀

  43. August 11, 2009 3:52 pm

    The mention of Shiv Kumar Batalavi’s songs have taken me back to my college days. I think no translation can do justice to his original words. I have a very old cassete of his songs sung by Mohinder Kapoor and another one by Jagjeet Singh. “Ik Kudi Jihda Naa Mohabbat, Gum Hai! Gum Hai! Gum Hai” is the one that i like the most and another one that i like is “Bhhatthee waliyey chambey diye daaliye, nee peedaan da paraga bhunn de, nee Bhhatthee waliyey”
    me- I am envious for just a bit Sir..seeing as to how you do know the language and thus the words:))

    yes translations can never do justice. to the original….

    you have the old casettes too?:)

    the last lines I wasn’t able to understand Sir:) could you please give a light translation?:)

    • August 14, 2009 6:27 pm

      In olden days , in a typical punjab village, there used to be a ‘bhatthee’ an open air fire place with a big ‘kadhayee’ (large frying pan) fixed over it. It was used for roasting the corn in hot sand of the ‘kadhayee’ to turn them into pop corns. The person doing the roasting was invariably a female. It was a routine with the villagers, particularly, the women and children to throng this fire place in the evenings with their raw corns and get them roasted in to pop corns and enjoy them as evening snack. The one helping put into the pan was called ‘paraga’ and the share of raw corns kept back by the female was called ‘bhaada’ or her fee for giving out the service of roasting the corns. So here the poet calls the ‘bhatthee wali’ a branch laden with the flowers of ‘chamba’ and asks her to roast his ‘peedaan da paraga’ (his handful of sorrows). He promises her that he will pay her in form of his tears so the next line is “tenu devaan hanjuaan da bhaada nee dukkhaan daa paragaa bhunn de, nee bhatthee waliye”

      I will try and upload this song on my bog some time.

  44. August 11, 2009 4:38 pm

    Indygurl, havent been able to read enough, and spend time here, but I shall be back. This is a treasure house of poetry, esp. translated works! Thank you 🙂

    me- muahh!:D just to be able to see you in the blogworld brings a huge smile (((((((((((((((hugs)))))))

    And yes, may I add Pablo Neruda to the list? Did not find mention of him. His work too is translated I think. Am not sure. And this one: A Dog Has Died is superlative. Read it, you will understand 🙂 And his love poems are just out of this world 🙂
    me- Ushus 🙂 Pablo Neruda? how could I leave him out? 🙂

    the one you have shared is just too poignant …full of ache for a friend….makes me tear up every time I read it ..I start looking at a fourlegged baby in my home and cant do anything but just sit there ………

    When I first discovered Neruda. it was courtesy this one Ushus..and it has stayed my fav ever since

    ..Ushus I have started loving poetry here because of you:)
    yours are the words I wait for:)
    and I have so much to learn yet…so many poets still undiscovered ….
    I want to know about all of them from you:)

  45. August 11, 2009 4:42 pm

    Wow, Indy! That was some post! The poems are seriously heart wrenching.. It is wonderful to be able to understand these poems – thanks to the translations.. I am not too much of a poetry person, but used to love some when at school. What I used to love about poetry is the fact that interpretations could change based on the reader.. There are so many ways of interpreting poems..
    Haven’t seen the videos – will come back later to see them 🙂
    me- thanks SMitha:)

    yes the translations seem like a godsend:)
    so so true.. the interpretations like Solilo too says change according to each reader.. do see or rather listen to the first audio

  46. August 11, 2009 4:54 pm

    Good job indyeah..thanks for making me read some good chosen ones here 🙂
    me- thanks Aniruddha:)

  47. August 12, 2009 12:13 am

    Lovely renditions there! I had once fallen in love with poems and poets – Hindi, Bengali and English. My favs included Amrita Pritam, Harivanshrai Bacchan, Rabindranath Tagore, William Wordsworth, Robert Frost… and others whose names I forgot (poor memory be damned) after my school days! And after a long time, this post of yours helped me to rekindle that old love for poetry!

    me- yes they are arent they?:)

    those poets were some of my favourites too:) they were something weren’t they?:)
    glad that it brought back some memories:)

  48. August 12, 2009 4:21 pm

    mmm mm mm mmm mmm mmmmm mmmm mm !!! 😉
    me- 😆
    now translate this new language too 😀

    • August 13, 2009 4:59 am

      Translation : my new post is also about one great poetry !!! 😉

      Ok, now let me get into the post. I have nothing to say! Seriously !! Well, thats not because of the post is tooo good for words, its because I suck at poetry! Big time ! I dont understand them and I havnt made any efforts to understand them 😀 😀 😀

      Btw, there is one poetry that made me cry when I was a child !! No no, not because I was forced to learn it, but it was very touching. Its in malayalam though ! I dont remember the lines. But the story is something like this :

      A woman looks at a mango tree and starts crying. She thinks of something that happened in the past. Years ago, she had planted a mango seed which grew up to a small plant. Her son, one day happened to fiddle with the plant and she beat the child real hard that he cried like crazy (‘like crazy’ I added, but the child cried!). Today her son is no more, but she has the mango tree right in front of her with mangoes which no one wants !!!

      Crap, I said I had nothing to say and look at the length of this comment !! 😀 😀 😀

  49. August 12, 2009 7:55 pm

    Thank you for the visit, the kind words, and most of all, for the hugs(I’m sounding like my daughter today)

    Your comment section is in itself like a blog. 🙂 And your blog is very interesting. I immensely enjoyed the translated poems (Amrita Pritam). You seem to be very much in the moment of savoring each and every word.


    me- aww you came…. how sweet is that?:)
    thank you for your words:)
    yes a post is nothing without the comments that just take it to another level 🙂 thought provoking in the extreme..and for that a huge thank you to my friends 🙂 🙂

  50. August 12, 2009 8:25 pm

    If there ever is a longest posts award, it should go to u 😆
    me- 😀 😀
    I plead innocent to the above charge 🙄

  51. August 12, 2009 10:44 pm

    Came here yesterday, started reading but wasn’t pleased because the video didn’t play, so back here to go through this lovely, lovely post!
    me- (thanks IHM:)

  52. August 12, 2009 11:50 pm

    Beautiful!! Is all I can say!
    First time here, hope to come by more often.
    me- thanks Ashwini..welcome here:)

  53. August 13, 2009 12:51 am

    I loved the first one the most… touching and beautiful!! Thanks for sharing all this!

    You have created an ambiance for sharing of lovely poetry here, Indyeah 🙂 I can see how much this beautiful post has touched your readers 🙂
    me- ((hugs))IHM:)
    the first one is the one that touched me the most too…

  54. August 13, 2009 1:55 am

    Let me begin by saying that I love you, I love the way you write! I love it how you make me realize all that I am, and all that I can become. This post, it’s gone right down to my heart… it’s my most fav post from all that you have written.

    The topic, the content, the many many poems….there’s not a word in there that I haven’t paused at! Its Lovely!

    Now, my comment is a post by itself…but then, I’m KRS! I enjoy privileges!!! 😀

    Mein Tenu Phir Milan Gi
    I have read this poem by Amrita Pritam at another bloggers first time, and I loved it so much, I copied it in my fav poems wala doc! I am not too much of a poem person, coz I am a bit scared of them. Some of them have an intimidating power to unleash emotions that maybe I did not know existed, or emotions that are best left buried than out…u know?

    Poets are alchemists, some are dangerously effective…. they conjure within you a storm of emotions, and that leaves me helpless at many levels… I don’t have the guts to let those emotions rise!

    The video of gulzar reciting…I told u, again, I will be sleepless, so I will hear it in fursat! 🙂 sometimes I even skip the bits of gulzar on the RD songs, coz it’s too emotion evoking…

    When the body perishes,
    all perishes;
    but the threads of memory
    are woven with enduring specks.
    I will pick these particles,
    weave the threads,
    and I will meet you yet again

    it’s not worldly, these lines… and yet, it seems like a possible feat. It makes me wanna look back at all that I wished for and lost, and gives me hope….hope that I am beyond my skin and flesh…. Life is not what we call it, its much bigger, and more incredible…and someday, I wish to know its potential, to be one with the truth!

    Sigh! Indy, I told u, I warned u…this post, ur choice in poems!!! Geee….. crafty will seem a bit diff in this comment, but its still ur KRS! 🙂

    iss comment ke baad, mein tenu phir milan gi Indy!

    The Tree

    What have u done Indy? What have u posted??

    There are trees I would like
    To kiss and then die.
    I wish that I could
    Return as a tree.

    As a kid in my native place, me and my cousins used to sit under a mango tree, the only one for miles away…and we would play. I was in 5th std when we started going there. It was love at first sight. I used to call it Ammbu. And my cousins were always amused that not only did I name it, but also would hug Ammbu and give it a kiss!!! I‘d talk to Ammbu too. This went on for 2 yrs each time I vacationed there. Third yr, Ammbu had borne many mangoes! And Indy, I can’t explain how, but every day we went there, after my hug and few words of greetings, mangoes dropped… every single day…ripe mangoes…we never had to pluck. I was too delighted as a kid, I did not read much into it. When I returned one year, in place of Ammbu was flat grass… the land was bought, and barbed.

    If there has been a time that I was bitter to be born as a human, it was this.
    And when I think of rebirth, I wanna be Ammbu….a tree… I wanna be in a meadow, on the banks of a stream or river, with birds on my branches, leaves that shiver in the breeze, roots than reach the heart of the earth, a home to countless living beings… and yet, silent.
    I have a fascination for woods…I know eventually I will end up with a house close to the woods, I’ve dreamed of it since I was a kid…this attraction towards trees….and this poem….it just levitated my memories…I hope someday, someone finds me as a tree!

    Eh Mere Geet

    For many births I have had to live
    The weight of its words.
    No one else has the ability
    To bring voice to it.
    This song was born with me,
    And will die with me.
    I must sing this song
    And then die.

    I loved it…is such a bland way to say what I feel about this. Thanks for sharing this Indy… it connects so painfully, that the pain seems joy…. When thoughts find expression, the feeling is inexpressible…

    Your warning is taken. I will venture carefully, as I always do with poetry. There have been times when I have read Oscar Wilde, and I have been so distant from reality, so away from relations and social obligations and friends, when I have wondered what it is that I am seeking, a deep pit in the stomach, with his words that just linger….don’t go. It scared me a bit, the effect of finding my deepest emotions in a few combination of words I read… I’ve been very careful with poetry ever since.

    My fav from Oscar Wilde is Requiescat, the last 2 stanzas being the most cherished…

    Coffin-board, heavy stone,
    Lie on her breast,
    I vex my heart alone
    She is at rest.

    Peace, Peace, she cannot hear
    Lyre or sonnet,
    All my life’s buried here,
    Heap earth upon it.

    Another poem close to my heart is Ballad of Father Gillian by Yeats. I even remember my English text book where I read it…I wud read my Englsih text book during summer vacation, way before the year begins. This was the last poem, on the last page of the text….Lemme just give the last stanzas here …

    ‘He Who hath made the night of stars
    For souls who tire and bleed,
    Sent one of this great angels down,
    To help me in my need.

    ‘He Who is wrapped in purple robes,
    With planets in His care
    Had pity on the least of things
    Asleep upon a chair.’

    If this doesn’t reduce one into looking like a speck of dust, I don’t know what will….

    Stammer and Single Shooting Star
    Both are beautiful and unbelievably simple yet profound! Perspective that comes only when u detach from conditioning…something I wish to do! Touch of genius.

    I want to be killed by an Indian bullet
    Sigh! Anything I write here will not do’s perfect, and the last line is to die for…

    This is a beautiful word Indy, with an even more painfully beautiful meaning. And it reminded me of this ghazal by Ghalib that I wanna share…. ( I collect Ghazals too, but very carefully again! Too much emotions!)

    Yeh Na Thi Hamari Kismat, Ke Visaal-e-Yaar Hota
    Agar Aur Jeete Rehate, Yehi Intezaar Hota

    Koi Mere Dil Se Puche, Tere Teer-e-Nimkash Ko
    Yeh Khalish Kaha Se Hoti, Jo Jigar Ke Paar Hota

    Yeh Kaha Ki Dosti Hai, Ke Bane Hai Dost Naaseh
    Koi ChhaarSaaz Hota, Koi Gam Gusaar Hota

    Kahu Kis Se Mei, Ke Kya Hai Shab-e-Gham Buri Bala Hai
    Mujhe Kya Bura Tha Marana, Agar Ek Baar Hota

    Yeh Masaail-e-Tasavuff, Yeh Tere Bayaan ‘Ghalib’
    Tujhe Hum Wali Samjhte, Jo Na BadaaKhaar Hota

    Okie, I am done Indy…..
    I read this post a zillion times, its saved in my favs. The Tree poem, it’s haunted me… and I am enjoying it thoroughly!

    Indy, I owe u big time for this post, I really do. 🙂

  55. August 13, 2009 9:26 am

    Well my fav poet is “Gulzar”. All his songs have a charm and I love the way he uses words differently.

    Though It wud be tough to pick out one song but if I have to then it wud be ‘tujhse naraaz nahin zindagi’.

    Here check this out (an old effort of mine :))

  56. August 13, 2009 9:29 am

    Lovely poems. thanks for also putting up the translated lyrics. Been listening to Jagjit Singh’s rendition of “Eh mera geet” since morning (repeating again and again). Lovely.

    Sadly, i hardly have time to go thru all these gems in youtube and listen to them. Sometimes on wkends, i dig thru the old Black and White classics in youtube and listen to them. Brings back memories of the growing up years in Hyderabad listening to Aakashvani on radio 😀

  57. August 13, 2009 12:23 pm

    Hello Grandma,

    You have been awarded:

    Please accept it 🙂

  58. August 13, 2009 7:46 pm

    Hey, AMrita Pritam is my favoirte, I liked her so much that I went directly to meet her relatives in chandigarh, they all rock.
    The best part of Amrita’s life was, indeed, Amrita and Imroj-The Great, if you klnow about him. He loved her, and loved her like anything, read Amrita-Imroj(don’t remembr the author) if you have got time.

  59. August 14, 2009 6:11 am

    Your mood meter. What happened sweetie pie?


    I ❤ Indy girl. 😀
    me- arre you know na….the way people become pests and then irritate … ughhhhh!
    trust you to notice the mood:)
    I heart you too 😀 😀 XOXOXOXOXO 😀

    • August 14, 2009 12:28 pm

      tell me indy…. who is irritating you?????
      I will take care of them………. 😛 😛 😛

  60. August 14, 2009 10:48 am

    thank you Indyeah! Thank you for making it happen.
    me- its something that gives tremendous courage when I read blogs (and efforts and concrete groundwork)such as thank YOU:)
    may your initiative go from strength to strength ..

  61. craftyshines permalink
    August 14, 2009 12:38 pm

    annoyed? kaun hai woh paapi???????

    *crafty rolls sleeves and stitches it up permanently*

    point them out Indy….

    *crafty takes long sip of coffee*

    👿 👿 👿


  62. September 2, 2009 11:14 pm

    absolutely lovely post. And you write so well, and thanks for introducing Shiv batalvi to me…. I love punjabi folk songs (not the dhinchak ones that belong popular culture , but earthy slow songs). Though I understand very little punjabi (and depend completely on my husband to translate it for me), I remain a faithful fan of amrita preetam. Have read all her books (translated ones), and the favourite is “Kora Kagaz”.

    I went through your hindi poems as well. brilliant work!
    all the poems and the translated work you have put moved me a great deal.

    Thanks, thanks again 🙂

  63. September 5, 2009 4:15 pm

    gorgeous…! I simply love it.. reminded me of my English Literature days in college…! Thanks…

  64. October 4, 2009 1:03 pm


    Beautiful stuff…simply awesome…have been in love with all these sine the time i started understanding poetry !

    BTW stumbled upon your blog from somewhere a week ago or so but couldn’t write anything. Now adding it to my list 🙂 .

    Cheers !

  65. February 21, 2010 11:44 pm

    It’s pleasing to know that there are thinkers in my country keeping the great language alive. Even I’m a published Hindi poet. To catch a glimpse of my work, visit-

    Keep Walking…

    me-welcome here. Will do.:)


  1. Verse love:) | Consider It Crashed

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