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Tag Archives: Gulzar

What is love? – “TUM HUMSE HO YA HUM TUMSE” by Gulzar

Love…It sweeps us off our feet. It gives us unbelievable pain. It makes us fly. It puts us through hell. We question, at times, if there is something as true love, or not. Does it exist?
One feeling the pivot of all other feelings…descriptions so varied. Each one us has a different way of understanding it. Or the same person defines it differently at different stages of life.

Rarely has a poet summed it up as beautifully as Gulzar Sahab does in this poem.

Here’s to the lovers.
And to a feeling that is fluid, lasting, evolving, growing, but never really ending, if it is true.

Pyar wo beej hai…………

PYAR AKELA JEE NAHIN SAKTA
JEETA HAI TO DO LOGON MEIN
MARTA HAI TO DO MARTE HAIN

PYAR EK BEHTA DARIYA HAI
JHEEL NAHIN KE JISKO KINAARE BAANDH KE BAITHE RAHTE HAIN
SAAGAR BHI NAHIN KE JISKA KINAARA HOTA NAHIN
BAS DARIYA HAI AUR BEHTA HAI
DARIYA JAISE CHADH JAATA HAI, DHAL JAATA HAI
CHADHNA DHALNA PYAR MEIN WOH SAB HOTA HAI
PAANI KI AADAT HAI OOPAR SE NEECHE KI JANIB BEHNA
NEECHE SE PHIR BHAAGTI SOORAT OOPAR UTHNA
BAADAL BAN AAKASH MEIN BEHNA
KAANPNE LAGTA HAI JAB TEZ HAWAYEN CHHAREIN
BOOND BOOND BARAS JAATA HAI

PYAR EK JISM KE SAAZ PE BEHTI BOOND NAHIN HAI
NA MANDIR KI AARTI HAI NA POOJA HAI
PYAR NAFA HAI NA LAALACH HAI
NA LAABH NA HAANI KOI

PYAR AILAN HAI EHSAAN HAI NA KOI JANG KEE JEET HAI YEH
NA HI HUNAR HAI NA HI INAAM NA RIWAAJ NA REET HAI YEH
YEH REHEM NAHIN YEH DAAN NAHIN
YEH BEEJ NAHIN JO BEEJ SAKE
KHUSHBOO HAI MAGAR YEH KHUSHBOO KI PEHCHAN NAHIN

DARD DILAASE SHAQUE VISHWAS JUNOON AUR HOSH-O-HAWAS KE EK AHSAAS KE KOKH SE
PAIDA HUA HAI
EK RISHTA HAI YEH
YEH SAMBANDH HAI –
DO NAAM KA DO ROOHON KA PEHCHAANON KA
PAIDA HOTA HAI BADHTA HAI YEH
BOODHA HOTA NAHIN

MITTI MEIN PALAY EK DARD KI THANDI DHOOP TALE
JAR AUR TARAKKI KI FASAL
KAT’TI HAI
MAGAR YEH BANT’TI NAHIN

MATTI AUR PAANI AUR HAWAA KUCHH ROSHNI AUR TAREEQUI KUCHH
JAB BEEJ KI AANKH MEIN JHAANKTE HAIN
TAB PAUDA GARDAN OONCHI KARKE
MOONH NAAK NAZAR DIKHLATA HAI
PAUDE KE PATTE PATTE PAR KUCHH PRASHN BHI HAI UTTAR BHI

KIS MITTI KI KOKH THI WOH
KIS MAUSAM NE PAALA POSAA
AUR SOORAJ KA CHHIDKAO KIYA
KIS SIMT GAYEEN SHAAKHEIN USKI

phool

KUCHH PATTON KE CHEHRE OOPAR HAIN
AAKASH KI JANIB TAKTE HAIN
KUCHH LATKE HUE HAIN
GHAMGEEN MAGAR
SHAAKHON KI RAGON SE BAHTE HUE PAANI SE JUDE HAIN
MATTI KE TALE EK BEEJ SE AAKAR POOCHHTE HAIN –

HUM TUM TO NAHIN
PAR POOCHNA HAI-
TUM HUMSE HO YA HUM TUMSE

PYAR AGAR WOH BEEJ HAI TO
EK PRASHN BHI HAI
EK UTTAR BHI !

-GULZAR

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Dil dhoondta hai phir wohi fursat ke raat din….

Sampooran Singh Kalra, better known as Gulzar, was born eons ago on the 18th of August. Today, on his birthday, I wonder if I could felt so much in depth the many emotions he has voiced for me.

“Tere bina zindigi se shikwa to naheen….Tere bina zindigi bhi lekin zindigi to naheen”…..moments in which love was lost but life drudged along, aimlessly, lovelessly, he said what everyone who has known that heartache felt.

“Tujh se naraaz naheen zindigi hairaan hoon mein”…..whenever life did not make sense, but acceptance was required nevertheless, these words carried me through…and somehow helped make some sense of the complexity of human relationships when he said “zindigi tere gham ne humain rishtay naye samjhaye”. And hearing this, I knew that life is never simplistic, but life goes on.

“Mera kuch samaan tumharay paas para hai”. How can one go through heart-breaks and break ups and not have heard this? Gulzar Sahab’s imagery in this one makes abstract memories palpable. One can literally touch those memories when you hear these words….feel the velvet of yesterdays with one’s fingertips when he says: “Aik sau sola chaand kee raatein, aik tumharay kaandhay ka til, Geeli mehndi ki khushboo, jhoot moot ke shikway kuch, jhoot moot ke waadey bi sab yaad kara do…..sub bhijwa do, mera woh saman lota do”!!!

His poetry is so relatable because the words are easily understandable and complex emotions are packed in tender every day words. He can slide from the classic, pristine romantic poetry in “Aap ki aankhon mein kuch mehke huey se raaz hain” to the deliciously raunchy “kajra re, kajra re, tere kaare kaare naina”, maintaining a class of his own in each situation.

And then there is romance and spritely love and excitement and fervour in the poetry of “Saathiya, madham madham teri geeli hansee”. The imagery in this particular set of lyrics is just fabulous……he calls her laughter “Sondhi see hansi teri” and we all know that “Sondhi” is the adjective used for the smell of wet soil after a spray of rain. And he says, as the lover, that the beautiful beloved should not go out into the garden wearing “peeli dhoop” (yellow sunlight) otherwise “bhanwray tum ko sub chairain ge…phoolon mein mat jaana” (the bees will bother you so don’t go near the flowers). So smoothly he alludes towards her beauty and sweetness that it makes one want to meet this beloved.

But to me and so many others, it is this piece of poetry that is the  Pièce de résistance when it comes to contemporary Hindi poetry celebrating that painful, beautiful human emotion we call “nostalgia”. In “Dil dhoondta hai phir wohi fursat ke raat din”, the first two lines are of course from Ghalib and Gulzar builds it up from there, but in such a way that while he pays a humble tribute to the incomparable Ghalib, he manages to maintain his own distinct style and gives us lasting phrases that resonate inside each one of us: “jaaron ki narm dhoop aur aangan mein lait kar…..aankhon pe kheench kar tere daaman ke saaye ko”……only someone heartless would not melt on these words and someone who cannot relate to the words in this piece of poetry needs to love more and live more.

So here’s to Gulzar. A humble thank you for his words and his genius.

Dil dhoondta hai phir wahi fursat ek raat din
baithhe rahen tasawwur-e-Jaanaa kiye huye

Jaadon ki narm dhoop aur aangan mein let kar
aankhon pe kheench kar tere daaman ke saaye ko
aundhe pade rahen kabhi karwat liye huye…..
dil dhoondtaa hai

Yaa garmiyon ki raat jo purwaayiaan chalein
thhandi safed chaadaron pe jaagen der tak
taaron ko dekhte rahen chhat par pade huye…..
dil dhoondtaa hai

Barfeeli sardiyon mein kisi bhi pahaad par
waadi mein goonjti huyi khaamoshiyaan sunein
aankhon mein bheege bheege se lamhe liye huye….
dil dhoondtaa hai

————————————————————–
Translation

The heart once again yearns for those leisurely days and nights
When we could just sit back and imagine the beloved

Relaxing, lying down in the backyard, under the mild winter sun,

Shading the eyes with the shade of the hemline of your shirt

Sometimes lying on the side and sometime on the stomach.

Or breezes may be blowing on summer nights
We would be keeping awake late into the night lying on cold white bedsheets,
gazing at the stars lying sprawled on the rooftop

During chilly winter on some mountain,
We may be listening to stillness echoing through valleys
With wet, misty moments in our eyes