#Untrendy Topics: Modern Hindi Poetry

I’ve been doing some research on Indian writers from the 1930s-1960s for a long-term scholarly project, and in the process I’ve been learning a bit about Hindi and Urdu writers I didn’t know about earlier. In Hindi in particular, I’ve been interested in the “New Poetry” (Nayi Kavita) Movement, with a small group of experimental writers adapting the western, free verse style to Hindi. (I may talk about some other topics later in the summer if there is interest.)

For a little background on Hindi literature in the 20th century, you might start with Wikipedia; it’s not bad. The New Poetry movement came out of a general flowering of Hindi poetry from the early 20th century, a style of poetry known as Chhayavad (Shadowism). Mahadevi Verma is one of the best known writers in this style; another notable figure is Harivansh Rai Bachchan, Amitabh Bachchan’s father (and actually quite a good poet).

For me, the Chhayavad poetry sounds a little too pretty (“precious,” as they say in Creative Writing class), though I must admit that part of the problem is that I simply don’t have the Hindi vocabulary to be able to keep up with the language the Chhayavad poets tend to use. I prefer what came after, especially the New Poetry movement. The “New Poetry” style roughly resembles the modernism of T.S. Eliot, Ezra Pound, and Hilda Doolittle in English literature. The language is stripped down and conversational, rather than lyrical. Some poets, like Kedarnath Singh, focus intently on conveying, with a kind of crystalline minimalism, pure images. Others are somewhat more conventional.

Below the fold, I’ll give some examples of a few favorite poems from the “New Poetry” movement, with several poems in both transliterated Hindi and English. [UPDATE: Look in the comments for three poems directly in Devanagari] My source today is mainly Lucy Rosenstein’s “New Poetry in Hindi”, which is available on Amazon for interested readers. (The nice thing about this volume is Rosenstein’s choice to print both the Hindi originals as well as her translations.)

In her introduction, Rosenstein describes how modern poetry in Hindi emerged after 1900, with Mahavirprasad Dwiwedi’s promotion of poetry in Khari Boli Hindi (earlier, poetry had mainly been written in Braj Bhasha). There was an early spurt of nationalist poetry, but, partially under the influence of English Romantic poetry (Wordsworth and Shelley), a movement calling itself “Chhayavad” emerged in the 1920s. Here is an example of a few lines in the Chhayavad style, from Sumitranandan Pant’s Almore ka vasant (Almora Spring):

Vidrum ou, markat kee chhaya,
Sone chaandee ka sooryatap;
Him parisal kee reshmee vaayu,
Shat ratnachhay kharg chitrit nabh!

Coral and emerald shade
sun’s heat first gold then silver;
snow mountain scent on silken breezes,
a hundred jeweled brids painting the sky
(Translated David Rubin)



It may be that my own limited Hindi renders poems like this somewhat inaccessible, at least in the original. More generally, operating from the translation, I put poems like this under “sounds pretty, but…” (That’s my personal taste. I have friends who love writers like Pant and Mahadevi.)

After the Chhayavad movement, the dominant stream in Hindi poetry seemed to split into two in the 1930s, with Progressives in one camp (Pragativad), and Experimentalists in the other (Prayogvad).

Progressive Poetry was part of a major movement in Indian literature that began in the 1930s. This movement is usually called the Progressive Writers Movement, and it had major literary communities in fiction, drama, as well as poetry; it also had offshoots in many different South Asian languages (earlier I have written about some Urdu writers loosely affiliated with the Progressive Writers, Sa’adat Hasan Manto, and Ismat Chughtai). As the name indicates, this was writing largely motivated by a desire to make a political intervention. A fair amount of the writing was anti-colonial, and much of it was oriented to social and economic reforms within Indian society.

Just after the Progressive trend in poetry began in the 1930s, a much smaller group of Hindi writers initiated a new, experimentalist style. Much of this writing avoided big political themes in favor of more abstract meditations. (Importantly, many of the writers in this movement overlapped with the Progressive Writers, and some were card-carrying political activists (i.e., communists). They simply didn’t bring themes from the political world into their writing.

Initially the movement was spearheaded by Agyeya (also sometimes spelled Ajneya in English; his real name was Sacchidananda Hirananda Vatsayan), beginning with an anthology called Tar Saptak, in 1943.

Agyeya (whose pen-name literally means “Unknowable”) is a really interesting character. He was educated at home initially, as his father didn’t believe in formal schooling, though he did go on to get a Bachelors of Science at a British college. He also started an M.A. in English, but didn’t finish, after he got involved in the independence movement. According to Rosenstein, Agyeya spent three years in jail (1931-1934), which proved decisive in terms of his development as a poet. He was a mass of contradictions – widely recognized as an activist and political leader, Agyeya was also deeply solitary in some ways. Raised as a traditional Brahmin, he also exemplified modernism in his intellectual and literary output.

Here is an example of Agyeya’s poetry, in the Experimental (“New Poetry”) style:

Chup-Chap

Chup-Chap Chup-Chap
Jharne ka svar
Ham mei bhar jay,
Chup Chap Chup Chap
Sharad kee chaandnee
Jheel kee lahro par tir aay,

Chup-chap chup-chap
Jeevan kaa rahsya
Jo kahaa na jay, hamaaree
THahree aankho me gaharaay,
Chup chap chup chap
Ham pulkit viraad me Dubei
Par viraad hm mei mil jay

Chup Chap Chup Cha … ap

Quietly

Quietly
May the murmur of water falling
Fill us,

Quietly
May the autumn moon
Float on the ripples of the lake,

Quietly
May life’s unspoken mystery
Deepen in our still eyes,

Quietly
May we, ecstatic, be immersed in the expanse
Yet find it in ourselves

Quiet … ly …
(translated by Lucy Rosenstein)



Another favorite New Poetry writer is Raghuvir Sahay, who came of age a generation after Agyeya.

Here is an example of a Raghuvir Sahay poem I really like:

Aaj Phir

Aaj phir shuroo jeevan.
Aaj meine eik chhoTee-see saral-see kavitaa paDee.
Aaj meine sooraj ko Dubte der tak dekhaa.
Aaj meine sheetal jal se jee bhar snan kiya.
Aaj eik chhoTee-see bachchee aayee, kilak mere kanDhe chaDee
Aaj meine aadi se ant tak eik poora gaan kiya.
Aaj jeevan phir shuroo huaa.

Today Anew
Today life started anew.
Today I read a short, simple poem.
Today I watched the sun set for a long time.
Today I bathed to my heart’s content in cool water.
Today a little girl came and shouting with delight climbed onto my shoulders.
Today I sang a whole song, from beginning to end.
Life started anew today.
(Translated Lucy Rosenstein)



Another poem in Rosenstein’s collection that clicked with me is by Shakunt Mathur, one of the leading female lights of the Experimental/New Poetry movement.

For now, I’ll just post Rosenstein’s English translation of a Mathur poem:

You should be beautiful, the house should be beautiful

When I return home tired you should be beautiful, the house should be beautiful
Even if all day sweat poured
However many clothes you sewed
Even if the child doesn’t yield
And the potato is half-unpeeled

When I return home tired you should be beautiful, the house should be beautiful
All storms in the house should be stilled
You should look at me with eyes filled
Without flowers in your hair,
Showy clothes, flirtatious air

When I return home tired you should be beautiful, the house should be beautiful
Reclining on the sofa,
You should be reading a foreign journal
The house should shine like crystal
My steps’ sound should startle you

Don’t write poetry, beauty, I am enough, you are loved
When I return home tired you should be beautiful, the house should be beautiful.



(I can post the Hindi if there is interest.)

Clearly a feminist sensibility! Incidentally, in Hindi some of the lines rhyme, which Rosenstein reproduces in her translation. The language is simple but elegant and the picture she’s painting seems true – and this combination is what I like most about the “New Poetry.”

Finally, here is Vinay Dharwadker’s translation of Kedarnath Singh’s “On Reading a Love Poem”. This poem isn’t included in Rosenstein’s volume, though several other wonderful Kedarnath Singh poems are in her collection.

Kedarnath Singh (b. 1934): ON READING A LOVE POEM

When I’d read that long love poem
I closed the book and asked —
Where are the ducks?

I was surprised that they were nowhere
even far into the distance

It was in the third line of the poem
or perhaps the fifth
that I first felt
there might be ducks here somewhere

I’d heard the flap flap of their wings
but that may have been my illusion

I don’t know for how long
that woman
had been standing in the twelfth line
waiting for a bus

The poem was completely silent
about where she wanted to go
only a little sunshine
sifted from the seventeenth floor
was falling on her shoulders

The woman was happy
at least there was nothing in her face to suggest
that by the time she reached the twenty-first line
she’d disappear completely
like every other woman

There were _sakhu trees
standing where the next line began
the trees were spreading
a strange dread through the poem

Every line that came next
was a deep disturbing fear and doubt
about every subsequent line
If only I’d remembered–
it was in the nineteenth line
that the woman was slicing potatoes
She was slicing
large round brown potatoes
inside the poem
and the poem was becoming
more and more silent
more solid

I think it was the smell
of freshly chopped vegetables
that kept the woman alive
for the next several lines

By the time I got to the twenty-second line
I felt that the poem was changing its location
like a speeding bullet
the poem had whizzed over the woman’s shoulder
towards the sakhu trees

There were no lines after that
there were no more words in the poem
there was only the woman
there were only
her shoulders her back
her voice–
there was only the woman
standing whole outside the poem now
and breaking it to pieces

(translated by Vinay Dharwadker) [SOURCE]

I hope you enjoyed at least some of those poems.

82 thoughts on “#Untrendy Topics: Modern Hindi Poetry

  1. Bachchan Senior is considered part of the chaavaad movement, otherwise all data in Wikipidea et al is wrong.

    Chayya chayya is a hindi version of the original Thaaya thaaya in Punjabi by Bullah Shah ( the song was not in movie, but was on the CD of Dil Se) and if you are interested less in the poetry, and more the prose, then you have to look at writers like Roop Dhillon ( Rupinderpal Dhillon), Shivcharan Jaggi Kussa,Devaraj Dinesh and Vishnu Prabhakar. Modern Indian writing is changing direction, with plenty of sci fi and other movements taking place

    Eg

    एक कहानी का जन्म http://openlibrary.org/authors/OL5006979A/Shivcharan_Jaggi_Kussa http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Rupinderpal_Singh_Dhillon http://www.rubru.ca/april2010/dunghapaani.html http://pakhistorian.com/2010/06/25/lallu-ji-lal-and-dr-gilchrist-created-modern-hindi-135-years-ago/ http://www.prayogshala.com/poems/tum-mujhme-priye-mahadevi-varma http://www.hindinovels.net/2008/04/shunya-suspense-thriller-complete-hindi.html

  2. Bachchan Senior is considered part of the chaavaad movement, otherwise all data in Wikipidea et al is wrong.

    Chayya chayya is a hindi version of the original Thaaya thaaya in Punjabi by Bullah Shah ( the song was not in movie, but was on the CD of Dil Se) and if you are interested less in the poetry, and more the prose, then you have to look at writers like Roop Dhillon ( Rupinderpal Dhillon), Shivcharan Jaggi Kussa,Devaraj Dinesh and Vishnu Prabhakar. Modern Indian writing is changing direction, with plenty of sci fi and other movements taking place

    Eg

    एक कहानी का जन्म http://openlibrary.org/authors/OL5006979A/Shivcharan_Jaggi_Kussa http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Rupinderpal_Singh_Dhillon http://www.rubru.ca/april2010/dunghapaani.html http://pakhistorian.com/2010/06/25/lallu-ji-lal-and-dr-gilchrist-created-modern-hindi-135-years-ago/ http://www.prayogshala.com/poems/tum-mujhme-priye-mahadevi-varma http://www.hindinovels.net/2008/04/shunya-suspense-thriller-complete-hindi.html

  3. Bachchan Senior is considered part of the chaavaad movement, otherwise all data in Wikipidea et al is wrong.

    Chayya chayya is a hindi version of the original Thaaya thaaya in Punjabi by Bullah Shah ( the song was not in movie, but was on the CD of Dil Se) and if you are interested less in the poetry, and more the prose, then you have to look at writers like Roop Dhillon ( Rupinderpal Dhillon), Shivcharan Jaggi Kussa,Devaraj Dinesh and Vishnu Prabhakar. Modern Indian writing is changing direction, with plenty of sci fi and other movements taking place

  4. My My! This Untrendy Topic is really Trendy!! Maybe more posts of this type for each and everyone of the Indian Languages

  5. @Wanderer “Bachchan Senior is considered part of the chaavaad movement, otherwise all data in Wikipidea et al is wrong”

    There were four pillars of Chhayavaad viz. Pant, Prasad, Verma, Nirala. Bachchan was indeed inspired by chhayavaad but he had his own style which was distinct from Chhayavaad tradition.Almost every poet of that generation(in hindi) was inspired by Chhayavaad.

    And just because someone put in a wrong information, it doesn’t make the whole wikipedia wrong.

  6. Fair enough Ytups.

    Here I think is another wonderful example of 21st Century story telling…

    लाश रूप ढिल्लों और तूर परिवार, दुगरी

    माल रोड के नज़दीक नेक की लाश वृक्ष से लटकती हुई मिली थी। उसकी जेब में सिर्फ़ एक मोबायल फ़ोन था और ओर कोई कागज़ पत्र नहीं निकला। अचानक फ़ोन की घंटी बजने लगी, ” कमर कमर ओए की टयून चल रही थी। हवलदार के साथ पुलिस का गुप्तचर खडा था। गुप्तचर ने सोचा, बंदो का पता लेने के लिए कोई पेपर तो नहीं था परन्तु फ़ोन सुन कर पता लग सकता है, यह कौन था। हवलदार को आदेश दिया, “इस लाश की जेब में से फ़ोन निकाल पर नंबर नोट कर। हवलदार और ओर अफ़सर लाश वृक्ष से नीचे उतार कर पोस्ट मार्टम के लिए के साथ ले गए। गुप्तचर भी फ़ोन को रमाल में लपेट कर थाने ले गया। वहाँ दस्ताने डाल कर फ़ोन की फोला फाली की, क्योंकि पता लेना था किस की लाश है। क्या पता बंदो ने आत्म अहातों की थी या फिर कोई ओर चक्कर था? जाँच चल रही थी कि इसी फोला फाली के दौरान फ़ोन की घंटी फिर बजने लगी,” ” कमर कमर ओए। वही नंबर फिर था। गुप्तचर ने फ़ैसला कर लिया, ” देखता हूँ कौन है, जो फ़ोन कर रहा बार बार?। फ़ोन चक्क कर कहा –हैलो?-। उस की आवाज़ सुन कर दूसरे के पास से जवाब नहीं आया। फ़ोन बंद हो गया गुप्तचर सोचों में पड़ गया। ….

    http://www.jgmatrix.com/trltws.aspx?Textbox1=http://www.5abi.com/kahani/kahani2008/016-laash1-roop-070210.htm

  7. Wonderful topic Amardeep. Incredible how a well written post engenders highly civilized and constructive comments.

  8. @Literati – Going down the (quite remarkable) comment thread, I began to despair. You mentioned the unjustly overlooked Batalvi just in time!

    When I was a child growing up in Chandigarh (Sector 19), Batalvi was a familiar of my parents and a frequent visitor. My most vivid memories of the gentle and literary man are of him reciting in small, informal, mehfils. Equally vividly, since I was maybe 4 or 5, I recall him being routinely drunk unfashionably early in the day. (My parents, otherwise dogmatic tee-totalers, were prone to tut-tutting but indulging the genius man-child.)

  9. 58 Wow! I recall last year my cousin’s in Ludhiana had Roop Dhillon come and stay at their home, using it as a base whilst he dealt with his publishers. They took him to Chandigarh, Amritsar and his ancestral home in Goraya.. They told me they had a similiar experience…must be typical of these writer types…I wonder how many more Mutineers have some story about Indian Writers?

    I agree, every one has managed to stay very civil on this thread!

  10. 56, Wanderer, wonderful story!! I have read many others of his like this…it is rare to get hold of his published work, but the net nowadays seems a great source for all sorts of writers, even in the original Indian languages!!

  11. Another poem of great merit…

    Aaj aakhaN Waris Shah nuuN

    aaj aakhaN Waris Shah nuuN, kitoN kabraaN vichchoN bol, te aaj kitab-e ishq daa koii aglaa varkaa phol ik roii sii dhii punjaab dii, tuuN likh likh maare vaen, aaj lakhaaN dhiiaaN rondiaa, tainuN waris shah nuN kahen uTh dardmandaaN diaa dardiaa, uth takk apnaa Punjaab aaj bele lashaaN bichhiaaN te lahu dii bharii chenab kise ne panjaN paniaN vichch dittii zahar ralaa te unhaaN paniiaaN dharat nuuN dittaa paanii laa is zarkhez zamiin de luun luun phuttia zaher gitth gitth charhiaaN laaliaN fuuT fuuT charhiaa kaher veh valliissii vha pher, van van vaggii jaa, ohne har ik vans di vanjhalii ditti naag banaa pehlaa dang madaariaN, mantar gaye guaach, dooje dang di lagg gayii, jane khane nuN laag laagaaN kiile lok muNh, bus phir dang hi dang, palo palii punjaab de, neele pae gaye ang galeoN tutte geet phir, takaleon tuttii tand, trinjanoN tuttiaaN saheliaaN, chaRakhRre ghuukar band sane sej de beriaaN, luddaN dittiaaN rohr, sane daliaan peengh aj, piplaaN dittii toR jitthe vajdii sii phuuk pyaar dii, ve oh vanjhalii gayii guaach raanjhe de sab veer aaj, bhul gaye uhadii jaach dhartii te lahoo varsiyaa, kabraaN paiaaN choan, preet diaaN shaahzaadiaaN, aaj vichch mazaaraaN roan aaj sabbhe Qaido ban gaye, husn ishq de chor aaj kitthoN liaaiye labbh ke waris shah ik hor aaj aakhaN waris shah nuuN, kitoN kabraan vichchoN bol, te aaj kitaab-e ishq daa, koii aglaa varkaa phol

    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

  12. I wonder if I can post a simple Gujarati Ghazal by:Gani Dahiwala

    સાવ અમસ્તું નાહક નાહક નિષ્ફળ નિષ્ફળ રમીએ, ચાલ મજાની આંબાવાડી! આવળબાવળ રમીએ. બાળસહજ હોડી જેવું કંઈ કાગળ કાગળ રમીએ, પાછળ વહેતું આવે જીવન, આગળ આગળ રમીએ. માંદા મનને દઈએ મોટું માદળિયું પહેરાવી, બાધાને પણ બાધ ન આવે, શ્રીફળ શ્રીફળ રમીએ. તરસ ભલેને જાય તણાતી શ્રાવણની હેલીમાં, છળના રણમાં છાનાંમાનાં મૃગજળ મૃગજળ રમીએ. (Fantastic !!) – Yo Dad હોય હકીકત હતભાગી તો સંઘરીએ સ્વપ્નાંઓ, પ્રારબ્ધી પથ્થરની સાથે પોકળ પોકળ રમીએ. ફરફર ઊડતું રાખી પવને પાન સરીખું પહેરણ, મર્મર સરખા પારાવારે ખળખળ ખળખળ રમીએ. હું ય ‘ગની’, નીકળ્યો છું લઈને આખોમાખો સૂરજ, અડધીપડધી રાત મળે તો ઝાકળ ઝાકળ રમીએ. I hope folks who can read Gujarati will enjoy this one. Gujarati is also based on “Sanskrit” Devnagari lipi.

  13. That is a good idea…Hindi is but one language of our Heritage.. In the same way I am posting my Mother Tongue..hope those who can read….Enjoy

    ਦਿਲ ਹੈ ਸੁੰਨਾ ਸ਼ਿਕਾਰ ਰੁਪਿੰਦਰ ਢਿੱਲੋਂ

    ਦਿਲ ਹੈ ਸੁੰਨਾ ਸ਼ਿਕਾਰ

    ਹਮੇਸ਼ਾ ਖਾਂਦਾ ਮਾਰ॥

    ਮਨ ਅੰਦਰ ਦੁੱਖ

    ਨਾਲ ਚੱਲਦੀ ਡਾਰ॥

    ਜਿੱਦਾਂ ਜਲਹੀਣ ਹੋ

    ਗਈ ਬਾਰ॥

    ਇੱਦਾਂ ਉਦਾਸ ਦਿਲ

    ਭੱਜ ਕੇ ਖਾਂਦਾ ਮਾਰ॥

  14. Amardeep:

    I second others’ comments of gratitude. This was a beautiful post, and opened by eyes to a genre of poetry that I might otherwise never have encountered. THIS is why I love Sepia Mutiny so much. Politics and prose. Thank you.

  15. I really want the “Aaj Phir” poem in script. I used google’s transliteration program but, would any Hindi readers out there mind checking that this is correct? (I’m going to print & frame this for a friend!). Thank you.

    आज फिर आज फिर शुरू जीवन आज मैंने यिक छोटीसी सरलसी कविता पडी आज मैंने सूरज को डूबता देर तक देखा आज मैंने शीतल जल से जी भर स्नान किया आज यिक छोटीसी बची आयी, किलक मेरे कंधे चादी आज मैंने आदि से अंत तक यिक पूरा गान किया. आज जीवन फिर शुरू हुआ.

  16. Now that it appears to be working , font and all, for all our Gujarati readers of SM to this here’s a Monsoon song by Tushar Shukla. Aarti Munshi has provided her golden voice and Naynesh Jani the music. To listen to this go to tahuko.com

          <b>ચોમાસું ક્યાંક આસપાસ છે</b>  
    

    આંખોમા બેઠેલા ચાતક કહે છે, મારું ચોમાસું ક્યાંક આસપાસ છે; ગાલો પર લજ્જાની લાલી ફૂટ્યાનું કોઈ કારણ પૂછે તો કહું ખાસ છે.

    કોરી કુંવારી આ હાથની હથેળીમાં માટીની ગંધ રહી જાગી; તરસ્યા આ હોવાના કોરા આકાશમાં આષાઢી સાંજ એક માંગી. વરસાદી વારતાઓ વાંચી વાંચીને હવે ભીજાવું એ તો આભાસ છે; ગાલો પર લજ્જાની લાલી ફૂટ્યાનું કોઈ કારણ પૂછે તો કહું ખાસ છે. આંખોમા બેઠેલા…

    કોરપની વેદના તો કેમે સહેવાય નહીં રૂંવે રૂંવેથી મને વાગે; પહેલા વરસાદ તણું મધમીઠું સોણલું રહી રહીને મારામાં જાગે. નસનસ આ ફાટીને વહેવા ચહે છે, આ તે કેવો આષાઢી ઉલ્લાસ છે; ગાલો પર લજ્જાની લાલી ફૂટ્યાનું કોઈ કારણ પૂછે તો કહું ખાસ છે. આંખોમા બેઠેલા…

    Happy 4th of July to all…

  17. SP-ji, some minor corrections. I second everybody’s congratulations to Amardeep for this fine thread.

    आज फिर आज फिर शुरू जीवन आज मैंने यिक छोटीसी सरलसी कविता पडी इक छोटी-सी सरल-सी आज मैंने सूरज को डूबता देर तक देखा आज मैंने शीतल जल से जी भर स्नान किया आज यिक छोटीसी बची आयी, किलक मेरे कंधे चादी इक छोटी-सी आई चढ़ी आज मैंने आदि से अंत तक यिक पूरा गान किया. इक आज जीवन फिर शुरू हुआ.

    I second everybody’s congratulations to Amardeep for this fine thread. Happy Fourth of July and Canada Day weekend everyone :)

  18. Sorry I messed up the formatting above. Trying again, corrected version in bold

    यिक छोटीसी सरलसी कविता पडी इक छोटी-सी सरल-सी कविता पढ़ी

    यिक छोटीसी बची आयी इक छोटी-सी बच्ची आई

    किलक मेरे कंधे चादी किलक मेरे कंधे चढ़ी

    आज मैंने आदि से अंत तक यिक पूरा गान किया. आज मैंने आदि से अंत तक इक पूरा गान किया.

    (BTW, Devanagari, along with other Indian scripts, has the concept of a ‘full stop’ and ‘half stop’ in verse: || and | – if you’re planning to print and frame this, it’ll look much better if you put these in too.)

  19. Promise this is my last post today: An evergreen hindi piece by Hasrat Jaipuri, put to music by Shankar Jaikishan and played by none other than great Raj Kapoor [Grandfather of Kareena Kapoor]in film “Mera Naam Joker” . Mukesh sang this in my favorite raga “Shivranjani”. Enjoy. You can listen to this on many sites.

    जाने कहाँ गए वो दिन

    जाने कहाँ गए वो दिन, कहते थे तेरी राह में नज़रों को हम बिछाएंगे चाहे कहीं भी तुम रहो, चाहेंगे तुमको उम्र भर तुमको ना भूल पाएंगे जाने कहाँ गए वो दिन …

    मेरे कदम जहाँ पड़े, सजदे किये थे यार ने – २ मुझको रुला रुला दिया, जाती हुई बहार ने जाने कहाँ गए वो दिन …

    अपनी नज़र में आज कल, दिन भी अंधेरी रात है – २ साया ही अपने साथ था, साया ही अपने साथ है जाने कहाँ गए वो दिन …

    इस दिल के आशियान में बस उनके ख़याल रह गये तोड़ के दिल वो चल दिये, हम फिर अकेले रह गये जाने कहाँ गए वो दिन …

  20. Happy 4th July to my North American cousins!! Here’s one more I’d like to share

    बदामी
    तेरियां अक्खां चों, कोयी इशारा मिलदा है लग्गे जिवें मौलसिरी दा पत्ता फर फर हिलदा है तेरियां रसीलियां अदावां ते, इहो “रूप” हरदा है तेरी सतरंगी शोभा ते, इहो “रूप” मरदा है तेरियां बदामी अक्खां चों, कोयी इशारा मिलदा है लग्गे जिवें मौलसिरी दा पत्ता फर फर हिलदा है लग्गें जिवें रांझे दी तूं हीर सल्हेटी एं लग्गें जिवें मेरे खेद लई शफ़ा भेजी एं तेरियां बदामी अक्खां चों, कोयी इशारा मिलदा है लग्गे जिवें मौलसिरी दा पत्ता फर फर हिलदा है उदात मुनूंखड़ा, तेरा वाह वाह शबाब है मुसकान तेरी ख़ाबां दी शराब है तेरियां बदामी अक्खां चों, कोयी इशारा मिलदा है लग्गे जिवें मौलसिरी दा पत्ता फर फर हिलदा है नीना तेरी शरन बिना कंवारा हां उपर-वेखे-अम्बरीं बनून्दल अवारा हां तेरियां बदामी अक्खां चों, कोयी इशारा मिलदा है लग्गे जिवें मौलसिरी दा पत्ता फर फर हिलदा है जिवें “चन्दन” दियां चिड़्हियां जेल्हां’च ने मेरे ख्याल कैद तेरियां खेलां’च न रूप ढिल्लों

  21. My contribution and suggestion…

    रातीं जागें करें इबादत रातीं जागन कुत्ते तैथों उते भोंकणों बन्द मूल ना हुन्दे जा रड़ी ते सुत्ते तैथों उत्ते ख़सम आपने दा दर ना छड्डदे भांवें वज्जन जुत्ते तैथों उत्ते बुल्हे शाह कोयी रख़त वेहाज लै बाज़ी लै गए कुत्ते तैथों उत्ते

    औखे लफ़ज़ां दे माअने

    रड़ी। खुल्ला मैदान ख़सम। मालिक रख़त। सामान वेहाज। ख़रीदणा

  22. Amardeep as you are less interested in Poetry, but more in Prose, this might be more your thing…

    कैनेडियन गैंगसटर रूप ढिल्लों

    दीप मंजे उंते लिट्या सी॥बिसतरा खिलर्या सी॥ ओह दे उपर इक्क खाली शराब दी बोतल पई सी॥ पलंघ दे आले दुआले कुझ गन्दे रसाले सन अते ऐशट्रे सी॥ इस ख़ाचे विच्च ड्रग्ग दी सुआह खेह डुल्ह डुल्हके पई सी॥ दोनों कैनेडियन सन। पर लड़की रूसी सी अते मुंडा पंजाबी॥ दोनों युवक सी॥ दीप केवल चौदां सालां दा सी॥ ओलगा सिरफ़ तेर्हां सी॥ मुंडे दे मां प्युं नूं लग्गदा सी के दीप पिन्दर दे घर सी॥ ओलगा दे मां प्युं नाके पत्ता सी नाके परवाह सी॥ सच्च सी गैंग ने इक्क मकान रक्खी सी॥ सभ इथे अफीम खांदे सी॥ कोयी कोयी वारी रात इथे बीत जांदी सी॥ कोयी कोयी वारी जिद्दा हुन इह दों करदे सी होर मैंबर वी करदे सी॥ इह चक्कर सी॥

    आहो! इक्क होर वेरवा जरूरी है! दीप दे जीनां विच्च पसतौल सी॥ अद्धा दिन चड़्ह ग्या सी जद दीप उंठ के ग़ुसल खाने विच्च ग्या॥ न्हाउन धोन दा जी नहीं करदा सी॥ मुंडे ने आपने आप वल्ल शीशे विच्च तक्क्या॥ मुख उ्‍ते मसा दाड़्ही उगदी सी॥ अक्खां कालियां कालियां सी॥ केस खुल्हे सी॥ आपनूं साफ़ करके पट्टका बणल्या॥ मां प्युं दे साहमने खलोन लई सुथरा ग्या॥ कपड़े पाके ओलगा नूं सुत्ती ही छड्ड दित्ती सी॥ बाहर जान तों पहला गल्ली विच्च लम्बे शीशे समने खड़्ह ग्या॥ काली कोटी पायी सी अते कालियां जीनां॥ आप नूं नम्बर इक्क समझदा सी॥ जीनां विच्चो तुन्न्या होया पसतौल कढ्ढके अकस नूं कलपनी गोली नाल उंडा दित्ता॥ हसके फिर बाहर तुर प्या॥

    दीप गड्डी विच्च बह ग्या॥ उह हुन आथन होन ही लग्गा सी पर सच्च मुच्च दीप नूं कार चलाउनी नहीं चाहीदी सी। क्युंकि दीप हले वी नशे दे दौर विच्च सी॥ रात पूरी बोतल पीती सी अते बलैक अते सपलिफ पीते सी॥ फिर वी गड्डी विच्च बैठ ग्या॥ जे तुसीं इस वेले सोंच दे ऐ ‐ दीप तां चौदां सालां दा मुंडा एं?- इहदे कोले वड्डे भरा दा लासंस सी॥ दाड़्ही कर के सोंच दा दी के पुलस नूं की पत्ता लग्गना॥

    कद्द विच्च लम्बा सी॥ पग्ग करके स्याना जापदा सी॥

    शराब दे नस्से करके गड्डी कद्दी इधर जावें कद्दी उधर जावे॥ दीप ने नींद नाल अक्खां वी मीचियां सी॥ रात दे वारदातां फिलम वांग मन विच्च लंघे॥ जद पिन्दर घर आया बापू ने दीप नूं साफ़ मन्हा कीता ‐ उह फसादी नाल बाहर न्हीं जा सकदा॥ गुंडा एं॥ अद्धी रात आ पर दीप ने प्युं नूं सुण्या नहीं॥ बाहर तुर प्या॥ गड्डी रोजी दी सी॥पिन्दर नाल बैठा सी॥ दीप पिच्छे बह ग्या॥ सीडी उंची देनी रौला पाउंदी सी॥ इद्दा बाहर आवारे तुर पए॥ पहला रसटी दी नंगा नच्चन वाले नच घर गए॥ उथों जान बुझके दुसरे गैंग दे इलाके गए॥ उह टोला आपणियां गड्डियां खोल्हे खड़्हे शराब पींदे सी॥ जद इन्हां नूं तक्क्या मुंड्यां ने जेबां विच्चों पसतौल कढ्ढ लए॥ दीप नूं पिन्दर ने वी इक्क फड़्हा दित्ता सी। हुन बारी खोल्ह के रकीब गैंग नूं टिच्चर करदा सी॥ अम्बर विच्च इक्क दो गोलियां छड्डियां॥ जद उह जुआब देन लग्गे रजी ने कार तोर लई॥ बहुत तेज॥

    तिन्न ही मुंडे फिर अफीम ताजर कोले गए॥ ड्र्रग खरीद के पिन्दर ने सैल उंते फोन कीता कुझ कुड़ियां नूं॥ इन्हां नूं चुक्कके अड्डे कोले लै गए॥ उंते बहके गप्प छप्प कीती अते सीड़ियां पीतियां॥मिट्ठे मिट्ठे महक विच्च सबील बणाए दुसरियां गैंगां उंते हमले करन॥ पुलस वल्ल गाल्हां कढ्ढियां॥ मां प्युं अते विरसे वल्ल वी॥फिर ध्यान नफ़सानी गल्लां वल्ल तुर प्या॥ इद्दा दियां सोंचां विच्च दीप गुआचा सी॥ इस कर के मुंडे नूं पत्ता नहीं लग्ग्या किना तेज कार नूं चलांदा सी॥ ट्राफिक लायट लाल सी॥ पर शराब दे सरूर विच्च दीप नूं ग्यान नहीं होई॥ गड्डी दूजे पासों वी आउंदी सी॥ बस्स हादसा होग्या॥ दीप नूं पत्ता वी नहीं सी की होया॥ ज़िन्दगी ख़तम॥

    मां प्युं ने लाश ताबूत विच्च देखी॥ पत्त नुं पछाण्या वी नहीं॥ केवल चौदां सालां दा सी॥ इस घटने तों बाअद पिन्दर ने कोयी होर मंडे दे दरां जाके पसतौल नाल उंडाउन दी कोशिश कीती॥ पर ओह वी गुंडा ही सी॥ पिन्दर हल्ले गाल्हां कढ्ढन विच्च सी जद दुशमन ने इहनूं उंडा दित्ता॥ पिन्दर सिरफ़ दीप तों चार महीने वड्डा सी॥ मां प्युं ने लाश ताबूत विच्च देखी॥

    किन्नियां लाशां मां प्युंआं नूं वेखणियां पैणगियां?

    पुलस ने उही कोठी शाती कीती॥ ओलगा बैड उंते ग्रंथी नाल सुत्ती सी॥ दोनां नूं ग्रिफतार कीता॥ अखबार विच्च ख़बर आई के ग्रंथी गैंग नूं अफीम वेचदा सी॥ ओही आदमी जिस ने दीप नूं गुरदवारे पंजाबी सिखाई! गुरदवारे ने उसनूं धरम विच्चों कढ्ढ दित्ता॥ पर दीप दे पिता नूं सांती नहीं आया॥ समाज दे साहमने पक्का सी॥ पर आपने घर विच्च दीप दी फोटो नूं सीने ला लाके रज्ज रज्ज रोंदा सी॥

    आपनूं नित्त नि＀् पुछे ‐ मैं क्युं पंजाब छड्ड के आया? क्युं?-॥

    पुलस अते मीडिया नूं कोयी हमदरदी नहीं सी॥ अखबार विच्च ‐ ब्रौन आउन ब्रौन करायम ‐ आखदे सी॥ इह चक्कर सी॥

    दीप दट बाप दा नां सुखा सी॥ सुखे ने इरादा बणाल्या यवक लई सैंटर बणाउन अते आपना जीवन उंदेश बच्च्यां नूं दीप दे कदमां तों दूर रक्खन॥ कैनेडियन गैंगसटरां नूं ख़तम करना सी॥ पर पहला कैनेडे दे जमपलां दे दिल जितने सी॥

    सुखे नूं केवल इक्क ही राह दिसदा सी॥ दिल विच्च पंजाबियां दे किसे खूंजे औगुन प्या सी॥ उह औगुन नूं उंठाउना सी॥ प्यार नाल॥ समझ नाल॥ धरम तुन्न के कुझ नहीं मिलना सी॥ पर कोयी राह विरसे वाले। बोली वाले इह आवारे मुंड्यां नूं सिखाउंना सी॥ पसतौल दी सेणसीनस उंडोनी सी॥ रैप संगीत दी वी। शराब पीन दी वी॥ इह सभ जत्तां दे सायकी विच्च आ बैठे॥ क्युं? क्युंकि बेफ़कूप गायक दे गाने ही इस प्राधीन वारे हन॥

    दीप तां सुके नूं वापस नहीं मिलन लग्गा॥ पर की पत्ता होरां दे न्यान्यां नूं वचा सक्कदा है? रोजी नाल शरू कीता॥ हारके रोजी ने बहुत हरान दी गल्ल कीती॥

    पहला मां बोली पड़्हन सिखी॥फिर लिखन॥ हुन रोजी वी साहत आपनी पीड़ी बारे लिखदा है॥ इक्क बच्च ग्या॥ हौली हौली इद्दा ही सभ बच्चजूगे॥ इस आस उ्‍ते सुखे वारगे ज्युंदे ए पहला ध्यान । फिर ग्यान॥

  23. Having just gone to on “Inheriting…a bunch of dating problems “, how many bloggers actually understand any language ( to read that is) than English? Is there a point in posting in original Hindi?

  24. Part of the Indian American – esp DBD – experience is the longing for and communal sharing of something familiar. That’s the point of comments in other languages… To me, seeing this post was validation of my worth as a DBD to this site/blogger. It spoke to me in a way in a way that posts on dating or growing up brown in America didn’t. Also posting in the original language takes care of the lost in translation factor esp. for poetry which relies so much on economy of word.

  25. Actually, I read in Le Monde about a recent homage to Harivansh Rai Bachchan in Paris at the Théatre des Champs Elysées :

    Amitabh Bachchan- Homage to the Poet Harivansh Rai Bachchan
    Sunday, 13 June 2010, 8:00pm – 9:30pm

    Amitabh Bachchan will be at the Théatre des Champs Elysées for a recital of about 20 poems of his father Poet Harivansh Rai Bachchan. He will recite them in Hindi (subtitled in French). For the occasion, he will be accompanied by a group of seven musicians from Bombay. The poems of Harivansh Rai detail the human condition with personal experiences as the starting point, to which the language of poetry gives a universal dimension…

    http://indiansinparis.com/events?task=view_detail&agid=350&year=2010&month=6&day=13

    Apparently it was very successful. There are videos on YouTube of the recital.

  26. Thanks. Moong Daal,Toor Daal, Masoor Daal,Channa Daal, Urad Daal, Kali Daal, Tadka Daal…Whatev.;-)

  27. That’s great Wanderer bro! I’ll try to get through that. Happy belated 4th of July all!