Wednesday, November 02, 2005

Tumhari Amrita...

Ajj akhan Waris Shah nu,
kittey qabran wichon bol
te bol kitab ishq da, koi agla warqa khol

Ik roi si dhee Punjab di,
te tu likh likh mare wain,
ajj lakhan dhiaan rondian,
teinu Waris Shah nu kehan,

uth dard wanda - bedardiaa,
uth tak apna Punjab,
ajj belay lashan wichhian,
te lahu di bhari Chinaab,

ajj sabhey kaido ban geye,
a husn, ishq te Chor
ajj kithun liaye labh ke
ik Waris Shah ik hor
Ajj akhan Waris Shah nu..

~Amrita Pritam (1919-2005)

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(Translation)

Today, I call Waris Shah, “Speak from inside your grave”
And turn, today, the book of love’s next affectionate page

Once, one daughter of Punjab cried; you wrote a wailing saga
Today, a million daughters, cry to you, Waris Shah

Rise! O’ narrator of the grieving; rise! look at your Punjab
Today, fields are lined with corpses, and blood fills the Chenab

Someone has mixed poison in the five rivers’ flow
Their deadly water is, now, irrigating our lands galore

This fertile land is sprouting, venom from every pore
The sky is turning red from endless cries of gore

The toxic forest wind, screams from inside its wake
Turning each flute’s bamboo-shoot, into a deadly snake

With the first snake-bite; charmers lost their spell
The second bite turned all and sundry, into snakes, as well

Drinking from this deadly stream, filling the land with bane
Slowly, Punjab’s limbs have turned black and blue, with pain

The street-songs have been silenced; cotton threads are snapped
Girls have left their playgroups; the spinning wheels are cracked

Our wedding beds are boats, their logs have cast away
Our hanging swing, the Pipal tree has broken in disarray

Lost is the flute, which once, blew sounds of the heart
Ranjha’s brothers, today, no longer know this art

Blood rained on our shrines; drenching them to the core
Damsels of amour, today, sit crying at their door

Today everyone is, ‘Qaido;’ thieves of beauty and ardor
Where can we find, today, another Warish Shah, once more

Today, I call Waris Shah, “Speak from inside your grave”
And turn, today, the book of love’s next affectionate page

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

"Noted author Amrita Pritam passes away
[ Monday, October 31, 2005 07:55:43 pmIANS ]

NEW DELHI: Well-known Punjabi literary figure Amrita Pritam died Monday. She was 86. ..."

Thus reported Hindustan Times of the demise of one of the greatest proponents of the pen. The light has gone out of our lives, no wonder it was raining like there's no tomorrow here in Mysore on Diwali night, even the sky was mourning. But amidst the TV channels dedicating hours of "on air" time celebrating Aishwarya Rai's and SRK's birthdays on 1st and 2nd november respectively, I know there'd be a few for whom the pain will linger on.
There'd be many who like me owe her for the facets of man that she has showcased. I owe her for the gloomy afternoons spent pouring over "Rasidi Ticket", "Ek thi Anita" and the rest. Especially "Rasidi Ticket" for showing what a relationship can be and not. Sahir and Amrita ... the melancholy of unrequited love.There'd be still many who must have weeped through the night, after she exorcised memories that they had buried deep within.
Thanks Anu, for letting me read all these books that you brought, for I can't think about Amrita without thinking about you. The light has sure gone out, but the iridiscence will stay forever...

2 comments:

Anonymous said...

Amrita Pritam's Passing away is a sad moment for not only Punjabi, but Indian Literature. My Mother writes in Punjabi and was visibly saddened by Amrita Pritam's demise. Amrita Pritam will forever be a gauge with which all Punjabi writers will measure their work. Being eqivalent to her wont be possible.

Rambler said...

Indeed! can u plz leave ur name with ur comments?