The Gravitational Pull

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Did you see the star, or did you see how it was burning?

They say stars are magnanimous…
and certainly unavoidable…
They pull you in,
like you’re a mass – good for nothing…

An asteroid perhaps,
that was floating
aimlessly…
gliding on a blank sheet,
searching for horizon.
Before some hot ball of fire
took mercy on it,
and caught it off-guard.

And suddenly the moth earned
the purpose to its existence.
Or rather comes to realize one…
what was there before him…

But not all asteroids fall into
an orbit of star…
some moths are granted
curse of a prolonged life,
where each day is spent
as a vagabond searching for love.

Some people burn like stars…
and some burn like the moths.
We don’t notice them much…
Perhaps since sky is too crowded.
Or because we’re too busy
to twinkle.

They say stars are magnanimous…
and certainly unavoidable…
But sometimes it takes a whole life
to meet someone that
you can uncontrollably gravitate
towards.

If you find yourself in darkness,
hold on for a little long,
light is maybe around the corner.
Either you’ll merge in it,
or you’ll emerge with one.
Who knows, who may become
tomorrow a star for someone.

– Dedicated to stars, the flames and their gravity…

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Picture Credits:
1. Starry Night – Wallpaper
2. “Starry Night as seen by Van Gogh” – Wallpaperworld

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The World for the lovers, is no less than the heavens (Duniya kisi ke pyar mein jannat se kam nahi)

Another gem in the ghazal world, rendered by non other than the master of the masters in Ghazal singing: Mehdi Hassan saheb.

Translation:

Nightingale said it to flower,
and flower said it to spring,
what stars heard as a whisper
from night’s silver fling:

“The World for the lovers,
is no less than the heavens…
A beloved residing in heart
is no less than the angels…”

You’re monarch of beauty,
beauty of universe you’re.
You’re soul of integrity,
integral of true love you’re.
All splendor of your beauty,
is no less than galaxies.

Even by chance when you smile,
pearls fall like it’s raining.
Even at sight of your glance,
buds bloom like it’s spring.
Fragrance sunk in your tresses,
is no less than the florets.

– Dedicated of course to the beloved no less than the angels…

Bulbul ne gul se, gul ne baharon se keh dia
Ek chaudween k chaand ne sitaron se keh dia

Duniya kisi ke pyar mein jannat se kam nahi
ik dilruba hai dil mein jo huron se kam nahi

tum badshah-e-husn ho husn-e-jahan ho
jan-e-vafa ho aur muhabbat ke shan ho
jalve tumhare husn ke taron se kam nahi

bhule se muskurao to moti baras pade
palke utha ke dekho to kaliyan bhi hans pade
khushbu tumhari zulf ke phoolon se kam nahi

– Originally written by: Wahaj Muhammad Khan (popularly known as Dukhi Premnagri)

Urdu version:



بلبل نے گل سے، گل نے بہاروں سے کہه دیا
ایک چودهویں کے چاند نے تاروں سے کہه دیا

دنیا کسی کے پیار میں، جنت سے کم نہیں
اک دلربا ہے دل میں، جو حوروں سے کم نہیں

تم بادشاه حسن ہو، حسن جہان ہو
جان وفا ہو اور محبت کے شان ہو
جلوے تمہارے حسن کے تاروں سے کم نہیں

بهولے سے مسکراؤ تو موتی برس پڑے
پلکهیں اٹها کے دیکهـو تو کلیاں بهی ہنس پڑے
خوشبو تمہاری زلف کی پهولوں سے کم نہیں

– دُکھی پریم نگری –

Trivia: “Lal Muhammad Iqbal was the composer of this song for the Pakistani film “Jaag Utha Insaan (1966)”. Shaikh Hassan, the director of the movie proposed Dukhi Saheb to write a song comparable with Shakeel Badayuni’s famous song :CHAUDHVEEN KA CHAND HO YA AFTAB HO…JO BHEE HO KHUDA KI KASAM LA’JAWAB HO… Dukhi Saheb reminisced “It was a very difficult challenge to me. Somehow, I sat down in a corner, scribbling aimlessly in a paper. Suddenly, the second Misra (Ek Dilruba Hai Dil Main Jo Hooron Sey Kum Nahin ) emerged from sub-conscious mind, I jotted it down. Meanwhile, Shaikh Hassan entered the room, he was glad to hear this Misra, he kept humming it. Within half an hour the first Misra flashed through my mind.” He completed the remaining song within 10 mins. Though it didn’t win, but this song was put up for Nigaar Award in Best Song category.”

Following version is covered very deliciously by a British singer, Tanya Wells:

The Maiden Lips

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Pink Castle

Level by level
it’s arranged like a palace.
Like some outer skirts,
try to sheath inner stakes,
from touch of those who’re
not worthy of its fragrance…

Yet news of its beauty travels
around in moments,
captivating minds of cunning thieves
and those who wear their heart
on the rugged sleeves.

With only one goal
they pursue,
to posses an aura,
to surround self with its magic.
To know what is it like,
the love’s first kiss.

And in the center of it,
Behind all walls, beyond all borders,
rests a jewel, a crown awaits,
for a lover to pollinate,
the maiden lips.

– Dedicated to the spring.

Image credits: “Pink Castle” by Aminah Tasleem

What makes me so drawn to your essence (Kyun tu acha lagta hai)

– Performed by Pakistan’s ‘Pride of Performance’ award winning, down to earth singer: Mr. Attaullah Khan Esakhelvi

Translation:

What makes me so drawn to your essence,
in a time free, I may ponder on it…
All I have seen and felt in your presence,
in a time free, I may ponder on it…

Each person in this city swears,
surely an adherence unwavering…
But who here really honors an allegiance,
in a time free, I may ponder on it…

To beloved I wrote, in a letter I sent,
“Let’s try and meet, for once at least!”
In return to which a reply arrived:
“In a time free, I may ponder on it…”

Seasons, moonlight, stars, twilight and
in breeze that carries a fragrance with-in,
What matches you most in eminence,
in a time free, I may ponder on it…

“Either you come to follow your heart…
Or you end up giving world – a compliance.”
Seems like a solid piece of guidance,
in a time free, I may ponder on it…

– Dedicated to the essence one’s drawn to, but unable to paint with.

Kyun tu acha lagta hai , waqt mila to sochenge
Tujh mein kya kya dekha hai, waqt mila to sochenge

Sara sheher shanasai ka , dawedar to hai lekin
Kon hamara apna hai , waqt mila to sochenge

Hum ne usko likha tha , kuch milne ki tadbeer karo
Us ne likh ker bheja hai , waqt mila to sochenge

Mosam khushbu baad-e-saba chand shafaq aur taron meintime
Kon Tumhare jaisa hai ,waqt mila to sochenge

Ya to apne dil ki mano , ya phir duniya walon ki
Mashwara uska acha hai ,waqt mila to sochenge​

– Original poet: Unknown

Urdu version:

کیوں تو اچھا لگتا ہے ، وقت ملا تو سوچیں گے
تجھ میں کیا کیا دیکھا ہے وقت ملا تو سوچیں گے

سارا شہر شناسائی کا دعوے دار تو ہے لیکن
کون ہمارا اپنا ہے ، وقت ملا تو سوچیں گے

ہم نے اسکو لکھا تھا ، کچھ ملنے کی تدبیر کرو
اس نے لکھ کر بھیجا ہے ، وقت ملا تو سوچیں گے

موسم خوشبو بادِ صبا ، چاند شفق اور تاروں میں
کون تمھارے جیسا ہے ، وقت ملا تو سوچیں گے

یا تو اپنے دل کی مانو ، یا پھر دنیا والوں کی
مشورہ اسکا اچھا ہے، وقت ملا تو سوچیں گے

– نامعلوم

Caught your glimpse such that, it made me lose my sense (Dikhai Diye Yoon Ke Bekhud Kiya)

– This is one of my favorite Ghazals and due to number of factors. Foremost it’s a writing of one of the 18th century Urdu poet, for whom it’s known, he shaped the language itself: Mir Taqi Mir. It’s performed on-screen by extremely graceful: Supriya Pathak, for film Bazaar (1982). Music is composed by extremely gentle Khayyam saheb, and undoubtedly the simplicity of this song earns times a range, with voice of a singing legend herself – the goddess of Hindi Songs: Madam Lata Mangeshkar.

Translation:

Caught your glimpse such that,
it made me lose my sense.
And like that wasn’t enough,
you distanced me from myself.

For such an extent,
the forehead kept kissing the floor.
All dues in exhibits of utter devotion
looks like paid.

Worshiped you, oh my idol,
with such an unending zeal.
In eyes of almost everyone
it seemed, to God I prayed.

Had wished a plenty, to step in
your home or least your street…
Hence, soaked in the blood now,
I walk, from your doorstep.

– Dedicated to that time and era of simplicity and grace.

Dikhayi diye yun ke bekhud kiya
Hamein aap se bhi juda kar chale

Jabheen sajda karte hi karte gayi
Haq-e-bandagi ham adaa kar chale

Parastish ki ya tak ke aye butt tujhe
Nazar mein sabhon ki khuda kar chale

Bahut aarzoo thi gali ki teri
So yaas-e-lahoo mein naha kar chale

– Original poem by Mir Taqi Mir.

Urdu version:

دکھائی دیے یوں کہ بے خود کیا
ہمیں آپ سے بھی جدا کر چلے

جبیں سجدہ کرتے ہی کرتے گئی
حقِ بندگی ہم ادا کر چلے

پرستش کی عادت کہ اے بُت تجھے
نظر میں سبھوں کی خدا کر چلے

بہت آرزو تھی گلی کی تری
سو یاں سے لہو میں نہا کر چلے

– میر تقی میر –

Dear All,

This blog has completed its second year. For this year’s run, there are countless readers I should be thanking to. Their proximity always breathed in me a new courage, and pulled me to write more, even though I had many gaps this year, some due to business, and few due to my procrastination.

I thank all of those who read and established all sorts of interaction. My special thanks is of course for following angels, for their regular support and feedback, for their original, more poignant beautiful and resonant writings of which my return with a response naturally became intuitive and fluent.

Maria ImranShereen AljarrahSidra Kamal,
Aminah TasleemTayyeba Irum,
Sonya KassamMiss Maqsood,
Hira JamilAima Yusaf JamalMyriam Olivares

Thank you all for being there. Hoping to keep up a consistency in both the flow and flourish. 🙂

Her Eyes

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“Eyes are portal to the soul.”
If you ever feel confused, or unsure,
and want to find out if you’ve really begun
to fall for someone,
then just ask yourself this…
how much you adore your beloved’s eyes…?
Enough, to dive deep in them and
make the world inside them your own?
Wish you enough, to see what they see,
what they reflect, what they rise and fall on?

My friend, told me that…
But I for one, never knew how one can ever describe the eyes….

I mean, how can you do it?
You gonna define its color…?
You gonna express how they shine…?
You gonna fall for its shape or its size..?
Or you gonna describe way they close and reopen…?

Like, what possibly any pair of eyes can do differently
that would make them stand apart
from countless others belonging to similar species…?

And then one day it struck me…
I knew one pair of eyes, perhaps, more than I knew mine.
It was the day I realized, “I know her enough…”
Too clichéd, yeah? I asked my self the same…
But it wasn’t like I fell for those beautiful gems,
right the moment I gazed into them.
It took its time. But to be honest…
It wasn’t fair, from beginning to the end.

I think, it’s really impossible to ignore
the raw beauty they possessed,
after all…

How could one possibly ignore one that saw the pain
like a sky mourning for the Sun after the rain…
Like reminding us, how often we don’t appreciate
worth of something until its far too late.
Eyes that would not just mourn but burn
the Sun within to set things right the way they can…
Applying herself like a dawn of hope in dark nights
of those who’d rather wish to sleep
forever under blankets of numbness post pain
than remaining awake to heal and change
for what’s left still, what can still be saved.

How could I have escaped the effect of eyes
that were inclined to see something positive,
something worth saving and cherishing
in every soul they ever met.
Like a sprout of a fragrance that leaves from the flowers
irrespective of whose surrounding they engage.
Eyes that saw things based on their intensity, their essence,
no matter caste, creed, color, background, ethnicity,
social status, or religious difference.
Like a wind tending the garden, touching all the flowers
with the love and grace, without splitting or grading them.

How can one turn an eye blind at way her eyes would see the world
like a living orchestra constantly producing symphonies…
Way her eyes would manage to see and read something to be learned
and kept as a part of soul out of even catastrophe…
Like her eyes would know exactly where to look, to find
a voice in silence, to find expressions in stoic and music in noise…
In totally bland and apparently common things of life,
that we tend to ignore trivially… they discover sense and poetry.

I think I can define…
Its color…? They’re rainbows and butterfly mosaics combined…
in a way that one can never keep its full spectrum confined.
They give life to world, leaking warmth in seams.
Its shine…? They’re an ocean with sparkling glitter of skies.
Reflecting both the golden hues of day and moonlight’s silver gown in night.
They give hope, they speak of light.
Its shape…? They’ve a shape of the sea shells, enclosing pearls within,
they’re made to carry even anomalies, that can emerge into exquisite.
Its size..? They’re limitlessly deep… pathway to the cosmos,
way to the galaxies, deep and wide than anything ever seen.
They give intensity to those who dwell just on cursory or surfaces…
And way they close and reopen…? Well, they keep themselves open like wells,
to contain the wishes, to encapsulate the moments, the vivid dreams,
moreover, they open like the wings of angels… determined to help spirits.
And they close on like the gates of palace and castles, saving everything inside,
from those who’re unfriendly and intrusive. Who try to malign a soul or mind.

I just love the way they sees things…
And never once yet it happens that they rise with a pride
or drown with keeping an air of numbness or vanity…
They are curious like the baby’s, wishing to know more and yet
as still and weary as an elderly’s piercing the hides to dwell deep.

Yes, I know from her eyes, that I love the world
that she inhabits in them, all that’s read by them,
world that these eyes reflect on,
but above all, I love the way they convert pain
into something positive,
way they forgive, way they rejoice, way they stare deep inside,
way they make one realize…
there’s more to world then what meets the eyes.
I do indeed, love her eyes…

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– Dedicated to the beloved’s eyes… (this poem is an ensemble piece of several small poems written on same theme).

Image Credits:
1. Soul Washout by Clarisse Litiatco (Deviantart)
2. Colored Eye Drawing by Kate Louise Powell (Pinterest)

How sober ones would know ever (Hosh Walon Ko Khabar Kya)

– Performed by ghazal maestro Jagjit Singh, for quite a marvelous Hindi film: ‘Sarfarosh (1999)‘.

Translation:

How sober ones would know ever,
what being intoxicated is all about…
Indulge in love then taste a mystery,
what being entranced is all about.

Day, since my eyes met with beloved,
wind and fragrance have never parted.
Finally, I have too come to witness,
what being mesmerized is all about.

Curls in tresses, taught wind and
clouds, how to perform a poetry.
Down gazed eyes made it established,
what being imbued is all about.

Words fell short here always, to paint,
state of heart, its deepest desire.
And beloved too missed subdued hint,
what being submerged is all about.

– Dedicated to all those who’re too sober to indulge in true intoxication of love.

Hoshwalon Ko Khabar Kya Bekhudi Kya Cheez Hai
Ishq Kijiye Phir Samjhiye Zindagi Kya Cheez Hai

Un Se Nazre Kya Mili Roshan Fizaye Ho Gaye
Aaj Jana Pyaar Ki Jadoogar Kya Cheez Hai

Khulti Zulfon Ne Sikhaye Mausmon Ko Shayari
Jhukti Aankhon Ne Bataya Mehkashi Kya Cheez Hai

Hum Labon Se Keh Na Paye Un Se Hale Dil Kabhi
Aur Woh Samjhe Nahin Ke Yeh Khamoshi Kya Cheez Hai

– Original poem by Indian Urdu poet: Nida Fazli

Urdu version:

ہوش والوں کو خبر کیا بے خودی کیا چیز ہے
عشق کیجئے پھر سمجھئے زندگی کیا چیز ہے

اُن سے نظریں کیا ملیں روشن فضائیں ہو گئیں
آج جانا پیار کی جادو گری کیا چیز ہے

بکھری زُلفوں نے سکھائی موسموں کو شاعری
جُھکتی آنکھوں نے بتایا مے کشی کیا چیز ہے

ہم لبوں سے کہہ نہ پائے اُن سے حال دل کبھی
اور وہ سمجھے نہیں یہ خاموشی کیا چیز ہے

# ندا فاضلی –

… This is the second poem of Nida Fazli, I have attempted to translate, first one was:
This hails from a day – Yeh Jab Ki Baat Hai