Monday, February 28, 2011

Ae jaa_nashee.n

कुछ अभी फज़र सावरी 
The dawn (fazar) is still dark
फिर कुछ तेरी ज़ुल्फ़ बावरी
And then, your hair are so black
अनवर--शम्स से अब क्या होगा
Light (anwar) of Sun (shams) won’t be able (to remove darkness).      

हिजाब--रू का अर्श पर असर
Red colour of Shyness (hijaab) on face affected the sky (making it red)
सुर्ख लबों पे गोया रक्स--शरर
Red (surkh) lips (lab) as if (goya) dance (raqs) of sparks (sharar)
मये-गुलफाम के रंग का क्या होगा
Now Who’d care for the gorgeous colour of flower-coloured wine

ऐसी गुलबदन शकील
So flower-bodied (soft) and beautiful is she
अदने हुए सब तमसील
All metaphors (tamseel) fall short (adne) in her description
क़मर किस क़दर बेहया होगा
The moon (qamar), a major metaphor, would have to turn shameless (behaya) (to face a beauty like her)

इतराता हुस्न बेपरवाह
Mischievous (itrata) and carefree is her beauty
तशना--दीदार मेरी निगाह
My eyes thirsty (tashna) to behold (deedar) her
दिल कहे तू रू-सियाह होगा
My heart says: You’d be black-faced (infamous),(as they say - love leads to disgrace)

हाए फितना--चश्म--क़ातिल
Oh! the mischief in the eyes of the killer (the damsel)
दाम--तबस्सुम में फँसा दिल
My heart caught in the trap (daam) of smile (tabassum)
खुदा जाने मेरा क्या होगा
God knows what would become of me! 

Thursday, February 24, 2011

Insane beauty

(Dedicated to the white tigers who lost their talent of springing across the green grasses into sitting on a stool. To the girls who couldn't live out their agile youth which became only a parameter for their being shortlisted by prospective bridegrooms. To those beautiful minds whose potential for authentic creativity and innovation got doused in the cries of 'This is not in the syllabus' and 'what's the scope in it?' all because their beauty lacked the insanity to roam wildly into the world.)

A tinge of insanity surfaces
               and diffuses in your eyes
Like a tincture of blue ink
               on a gradual capillary rise
staining parched and pure
               white chromatograph strips.
It coagulates in the eyes
               then ripples on your lips.

Let break this brewing storm
              Infuse vibration in serenity
To behold is a joy grown cold
              Unleash the mercurial beauty
to mesmerize and inflame
              the whole universe ablaze
Overstep the line to liberate 
              passion locked in showcage.

Let's breathe and live out this
              Insanity transfused into me
Dancing in the murky streets
              With our hands waving free.

Monday, February 21, 2011

Which is the real world

The sheer joy of performance and of seeing the ideas in your head being staged live is second to none.

I stand in the wings, watching Yasna as she speaks her dialogue, “Kitna waqt? Kab karega shaadi?”. The angst and conviction in her voice sends a momentary chill down my spine.
In another scene, when she gets late to the factory, and I suggest to her to say something impromptu to explain her late arrival, the next moment I get tense thinking that this new dialogue might take the Seth by surprise, and he might fumble. As she walks from the right wing to the down left portion, my heartbeat is racing, and eventually normalizes when I listen with immense satisfaction to a on-the-spot dialogue improvised by him in response to the one by Yaasna.
When Abhishek retorts, “Kya karegi phool ka”, and the audience catch the catch in it, their minds in synchronization with mine while writing it, it’s almost like a successful telepathic communion.
My friend Milli asks me in the evening if I have returned to the real world. It is then that the question occurs to my mind which is the real world.

I realise that whenever and whatever we do, we are always distracted. There are so many hidden implications in the words we say. Many of the things we say are superfluous without any real meaning in it. Sometimes we eat, watch TV and talk to a friend altogether at one time, and actually doing none of it. We send emotional SMS thanking our friends for being there for us and stuff, but that too forwarded SMS ‘Sent to group’. Most of the times, we wear fake smiles on our faces, and keep typing ‘hahaha’, ‘lolzzz’ ‘J’ in the chat box, talking about all sorts of haywire things and beating round the bush, even when there are personal things wanting to be shared. We ourselves don't often care if the other person is actually alright.
“How are you?”                                                                   

“I am good. and you?”
“Yeah, I am also good.”
“So what’s up?”
“Nothing yaar, the same boring office and stuff. You tell.”
“Apna bhi yaar bas aisa hi hai.”
“Aur how is your girlfriend?”
“Yeah, she is fine. Teri bani koi?”
“Apni kahan aisi qismat yaar?”
“Aur bata, how is everyone at home? Uncle-aunty theek hain?”
“Yeah, everyone is good.”
“Aur bata.”
We announce our love to our lover so many times in a day, half because we know they would like it, and half because it becomes a habit. But how many times does it actually surge right from the heart?
On the contrary, I remember that day how tears started falling from my eyes and my voice quavered when Heathcliff is missing his dead lover Katherine. How I went into a sad and silent mode for the next few hours after the performance, with the remnants of its shade and the love for Katherine still beating inside my heart! When you are on the stage, you can’t do anything else; you can’t think anything else; you are on the stage in your body, mind and spirit; whatever you say, you have to mean it, you have to have conviction in it, if you want it to come out excellent. There is no other way.
It was very difficult to focus in this case with the people constantly hooting and clapping. These people don’t see the difference between theatre and a fashion parade. They  don't want to let you be subtle, they want over-the-top dialogues which you speak out suddenly shouting, comic dialogues preferably with double meanings or a long emotional monologue in which you cry and fall to your knees, and they would clap, hoot, laugh, counter-comment. Still, you could act well in such places, and have the audience continuously cheering you, but it’s very difficult to stop acting and being in the act.
But yes, there happened to be some moments of stillness, when the world disappeared. The audience disappeared. Vijeta and Yaasna disappeared. In that magical world filled with smoke all around us and a green rose in my hand, the ogre looks at Phulwa. Her face is sullen and anxious. My heart storms with empathy and love for her. At this moment, I wish to fill her life with joys and get her everything she wants. In my reverie, it doesn’t occur to me that I had to give her the rose first. The gates of memory are closed - there is no way to remember or forget. My love and my instinct guide me. Nothing could go wrong. I announce to her my love - a sweet proposal without any expectations.

"Bahut muhabbat karta hun tumse. Tumhein paana chahta hun, aur khud ko tumhein dena chahta hun."

Then I see the rose, and give it to her. Looking back at it now, should this not actually have been the right order of things? She accepts my proposal.

And so, I wonder talking to Milli which world is more real?

Don't cry if I die

Yesterday he died
All of them cried
Tears in their eyes
Letting out sighs
Filled with regret
Remarking that
They had wanted to do
This or that for Raju
But somehow could not.
Guilty in their thoughts
That they had been
So harsh to him;
Many a unspoken word,
The various long-reserved
Feelings of care and affection,
Due apologies or admiration
How much they wished now
they had expressed somehow.
But no point in it
It din't matter a bit
Now that he was gone.
Truth is he died alone.

Not that I am planning
Suicide or something
But then, you know,
I might die tomorrow
So uncertain life is.
If I die, then please
Do not even cry
Let out no sigh
If there is anything
You feel like telling
Let it be today;
Otherwise on that day,
Do not disturb me
I want to die free
With no foolish notion,
At seeing your commotion,
That were I to live for
A few days more,
You would be
There for me.
I want no such silly regret,
At the time of my death.
Now if you are away
then just stay that way
If I live alone then I
Want to peacefully die.

Thursday, February 10, 2011

On the day of enlightenment

Such an awesome guy is Swami ji
You should come along with me
some time to his splendid ashram
He's full of calmness and wisdom.

He says he sees His light in my face
Upon me He'd shower his grace
When I'm led into deep meditation
Ah! my heart dances in exultation
Experiencing eternity in a moment
Freed from every worldly torment.
I am walking out of the dark night
Into a brighter day of divine light
As I transcend levels onto the gate
Of consciousness of a higher state,
The highest is near, I am confident
Of soon attaining enlightenment.

We will party hard when it happens
We got to have grand celebrations
Drowning beer and riding merrily
Downtown in my sparkling Bentley
Beating our bones on the dancefloor
And yeah, we'll cut a cake for sure
Dining in some expensive restaurant
On the day of my enlightenment.

Sunday, February 6, 2011

The poor guy lost his head (rap)

Yesterday the poor boy lost his head
The post mortem says his heart cracked
Burden of unlived feelings, words unsaid.

“Things are never that bad,
That they can’t be good” he said
When he knew it, why did he keep sad
Crying over what was gone, was he mad
No, I guess he was just a simple lad
Nothing came to whom even though he had
Given his all, he shot his wad.

Since he preferred passion to fad
He went too deep, too far ahead
With never-ending love, he formed a duad
As the tree attaches to the dryad.
He bound to his promises ironclad
But it was the nymph who left him bested.

When his heart was torn to shred
He was disillusioned, filled with dread
Further and back, all roads jammed
Chewed on bubbles of hope, but gad!
Treacherous memories stuck like brad

“There are many other roads to tread”
Thus he tried to distract himself but instead
The falsification of his convictions myriad
Had extinguished all his guiding lampad.
He could feel lighter being a dope head
But the hangover left him weaker and sad.

He never thought of dying, tried to be glad
But the smoke from his burning heart quickly spread
Burning stomach, red eyes, choked throat and head
He bent double wriggling, then tried to stand
Then he landed with a thud finally dead
The poor boy who lost his head.

Thursday, February 3, 2011

Mera taDapna hai bas unhein gavara (ghazal)

Ø  Jashn mein tha har shaqs hamara
     Is bekasi ka hai kaun sahara
(Everyone was mine in times of partying and merrymaking, but there is no one around to support me in my loneliness.)

Ø  Lazzat-e-vazd ke ek qatre se behak kar
    dhoondta phira ta-umr maara maara
(Getting stupefied by a drop of the taste of extreme happiness, he kept searching for it for his whole life like a madman.)

Ø  Jeene se khush na marne se tasqeen
     mera taDapna hai bas unhein gavara
(Neither she is happy with my being alive, nor satisfied with my death; she likes only my shivering in pain.)

Ø  Jo umeedein thi buniyad kashane ki
    unki nakamiyon ne hi use ujaDa
(The hopes which were the foundation stone of my house, their defeat proved to be its ruin.)

Ø  Be-malboos-e-gulshan mein dikhne laga
    ab khaar-baar bayabaa.n ka nazara
(The untrimmed garden started showing a picture of a thorny forest.)

Ø  Unhi ki barq-e-fareb ne jalaya khirman,
    baar-e-karam laye the jo abr-e-baharaa.n
(The lightning of their betrayal burned the field, the clouds of spring which had brought with them the rains of kindness.)

Ø  Hum the taalib-e-qaabil-e-jaan-sipaaree
    wo the talabgaar-e-jaa.n-nissara.n
(I was looking for someone who was worth resigning my life to; she was seeking people who could sacrifice their lives.)

Ø  Halaak ho kar hi jana ‘gulfam’ ne, jo tha
    khoonbaar gardan-e-aashiq se aashkaara
(Only after being slaughtered did Gulfam learn what was obvious looking at the blood-shedding necks of lovers.)