Chakley (Brothels) by Sahir Ludhianvi

These lanes, these marts of rich delights,
Precious lives, undone, defiled;
Where are the defenders of virtuous pride?
Where are they who praise, the pious eastern ways?

These sinuous streets, these doors ajar,
The clinking coins, the moving masks,
Deals of honour, hagglings fast,
Where are they who praise, the pious eastern ways?

These dimly-lighted, stinking streets,
These yellowing buds, crushed and ceased,
These hollow charms, for sale and lease;
Where are they who praise, the pious eastern ways?

The jingling trinklets at casement bright,
Tambourins athrob’ mid gasping life;
Cheerless rooms with cough alive;
Where are they who praise, the pious eastern ways?

Boisterous laughs on public paths,
Crowds at windows, thick and fast,
Vulgar words, obscene remarks;
Where are they who praise, the pious eastern ways?

The betel spittal, the floral wreaths,
Audacious looks and filthy speech,
Flaccid figures, looks diseased;
Where are they who praise, the pious eastern ways?

Lecherous eyes in beauty’s quest,
Extended hands chasing breasts,
Springing feet on stairs pressed;
Where are they who praise, the pious eastern ways?

This is the haven of young and old.
Aging sires and youngsters bold,
Wife, mother and sister — she plays a triple role.
Where are they who praise, the pious eastern ways?

Help, O Help, this daughter of Eve!
Radha’s child, Yashoda’s breed;
The prophet’s race, Zuleikha’s seed;
Where are they who praise, the pious eastern ways?

Call, O call the leaders wise
Let them see these streets, these sights,
Where are the champs of eastern pride?
Where are they who praise, the pious eastern ways?

Note: Above translation in English by K.C. Kanda. Following is the original in romanized Urdu.

chakley

ye kooche ye neelaam ghar dil_kashi ke
ye luT_te hue kaarawaaN zindagii ke
kahaaN haiN, kahaaN haiN muhaafiz Khudi ke?

sanaa-Khwaan-e-taqdees-e-mashriq kahaaN haiN?

ye pur-pech galiyaaN, ye be-Khwaab baazaar
ye gumnaam raahii, ye sikkoN ki jhaNkaar
ye ismat ke saude, ye saudoN pe takaraar

sanaa-Khwaan-e-taqdees-e-mashriq kahaaN haiN?

ta’affun se pur neem-roshan ye galiyaaN
ye maslee hui adh-khilee zard kaliyaaN
ye bikati hui khokalii rang-raliyaaN

sanaa-Khwaan-e-taqdees-e-mashriq kahaaN haiN?

vo ujale dareechoN meiN paayal ki chhan-chhan
tanaffus ki uljhan pe tabale ki dhan-dhan
ye be-ruuh kamroN meiN khaaNsii kii Dhan-Dhan

sanaa-Khwaan-e-taqdees-e-mashriq kahaaN haiN?

ye guuNje hue qah-qahe raastoN par
ye chaaroN taraf bheeR si khiRkiyoN par
ye aawaazeN khiNchate hue aaNchaloN par

sanaa-Khwaan-e-taqdees-e-mashriq kahaaN haiN?

ye phuuloN ke gajare, ye peekoN ke chheeNTe
ye be-baak nazreN, ye gustaaKh fiqare
ye Dhalake badan aur ye madqooq chehare

sanaa-Khwaan-e-taqdees-e-mashriq kahaaN haiN?

ye bhuukii nigaaheN haseenoN ki jaanib
ye baRate hue haath seenoN ki jaanib
lapakate hue paaNv zeenoN ki jaanib

sanaa-Khwaan-e-taqdees-e-mashriq kahaaN haiN?

yahaaN peer bhii aa chuke haiN jawaaN bhi
tanuumand beTe bhi, abbaa miyaaN bhi
ye biwi bhi hai aur behan bhi hai, maaN bhi

sanaa-Khwaan-e-taqdees-e-mashriq kahaaN haiN?

madad chaahti hai ye hawwaa ki beTi
yashodaa ki ham-jins raadhaa ki beTi
payaMbar ki ummat zulaiKhaa ki beTi

sanaa-Khwaan-e-taqdees-e-mashriq kahaaN haiN?

zaraa mulk ke raahbaroN ko bulaao
ye kuuche ye galiyaaN ye maNzar dikhaao
sanaa-Khwaan-e-taqdees-e-mashriq ko laao

sanaa-Khwaan-e-taqdees-e-mashriq kahaaN haiN?


“Chalo ik baar phir se” by Sahir Ludhianvi

Come, let us be strangers again, you and I.

I shall no longer hope for any favours from you
Nor shall you look upon me with eyes askance.
And my words shall tremble no more with my heartbeat
Nor the secret of your struggle be betrayed in a glance.

Come, let us be strangers again, you and I.

You too have hesitated to give yourself completely
I too wear disguises, or so I am told
The disgraces of my past are my constant companions
And you too are possessed by the nights of old.

When involvement becomes illness it is best forgotten
When a relationship oppresses it is best to break it
When the adventure you are embarked on cannot be completed
One must find a beautiful way out, and take it.

Come, let us be strangers again, you and I.

Note: translation by Falstaff

चलो इक बार फिर से, अजनबी बन जाएं हम दोनो
चलो इक बार फिर से …

न मैं तुमसे कोई उम्मीद रखूँ दिलनवाज़ी की
न तुम मेरी तरफ़ देखो गलत अंदाज़ नज़रों से
न मेरे दिल की धड़कन लड़खड़ाये मेरी बातों से
न ज़ाहिर हो तुम्हारी कश्म-कश का राज़ नज़रों से
चलो इक बार फिर से …

तुम्हें भी कोई उलझन रोकती है पेशकदमी से
मुझे भी लोग कहते हैं कि ये जलवे पराए हैं
मेरे हमराह भी रुसवाइयां हैं मेरे माज़ी की – २
तुम्हारे साथ भी गुज़री हुई रातों के साये हैं
चलो इक बार फिर से …

तार्रुफ़ रोग हो जाये तो उसको भूलना बेहतर
ताल्लुक बोझ बन जाये तो उसको तोड़ना अच्छा
वो अफ़साना जिसे अंजाम तक लाना ना हो मुमकिन – २
उसे एक खूबसूरत मोड़ देकर छोड़ना अच्छा
चलो इक बार फिर से …