These words – a poem in Urdu “Yeh Alfaz”

These words – a poem in Urdu, Yeh Alfaz, by Bill Koul (with English translation after the Urdu version)

This poem emphasises the immortality of words and human thoughts, feelings and emotions, irrespective of the intrinsic subjectiveness of their importance in the eyes of readers. It also gives an expression to the author’s love with the Urdu language. Whilst acknowledging the sweetness and completeness of the Urdu language, the author acknowledges the role of a number of notable Urdu poets and ghazal singers who have influenced him. The author expresses his deep gratitude to them and to all other Urdu poets and singers, whom he calls angels, whose names could not be included in this poem for reasons of poetic difficulty.

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Jo thhae mere’ apne’ kabi, woh ab aap ke’ be ho gaye’;

Mere kuchh alfaz aur chundh khaylat ab aap ke be ho gaye’.

      ~ ☼ ~

Yeh lafz meri zindaghi ke kucchh lamhe’ hai azeem-o-khaas;

In lamhun mein meri zindaghi ke’ hai kuchh khaas khaylat-o-ehsaas.

      ~ ☼ ~

In alfaz mein hai bandaghi be and kufr be, bebassi be aur majboori be, iltija be aur roohaniyat be;

In khayalatun mein hai sajda be hai aur jazbaat be, swalaat be hai aur guftgu be, risalat be hai aur insaaniyat be.

     ~ ☼ ~

Iltija hai tumse’, lage’ agar nahi dilchasp tumhe’ yeh lafz mere ya khayalat;

Na karna beizzat inko ya bekadr kabi tum, hai in lafzun mein meri jiddhat-o-jazbaat.

      ~ ☼ ~

Agar tumhari nazar mein ahmiyat nahi hai in alfaz-o-khayalat ke, bas rahene’ do;

Yeh lafz-o-khyalat bahut aham hai unke’ liye jinkee parwah nahi tumhe’ lekin azeez muje hai jo, aur unkee be jo paida nahi huea hai woh.

     ~ ☼ ~

Reh jaate’ hai sirf yeh lafz aur khayalat hamare’ jaane ke’ baad;

Na leta hai koi apnee haisiyat, takht-o-taj, shan-e-showkat ya rutba iss jehan se marne’ ke’ baad.

      ~ ☼ ~

Duniya hai bas ek khayal, chhotee’ bade’ sabi khwab rehte’ hai jahan;

Rehte’ hai din raat musroof iss duniya mein saare, aakhir hote’ hai hum sab fanaa.

     ~ ☼ ~

Hua hai ishq muje’ uss zuban se, naam hai jiska Urdu; iss mein hai jo orun mein kahan;

Maana ki maadr-e-zuban nahi hai meri Urdu, magar beshak hai yeh zuban sheereen and mukammal jaise’ meri madr-e-zuban.

   ~ ☼ ~

Hun mein shukar-guzaar un sab pharishtun ka jinhone’ mulakaat karvayee meri Urdu se;

Ghalib kee bulandi ne Jagjit kee la-fanna makhmalee awaaz mein maere taruf karaya Talat, Mehdi aur Udhas se, phir mile’ Majaz aur Maqhdoom, saath mein Sahir, Wasim aur Akhtar be’ mile’.

       ~ ☼ ~       ~ ☼ ~       ~ ☼ ~       ~ ☼ ~       ~ ☼ ~       ~ ☼ ~       ~ ☼ ~

These words

What belonged to me once, now belong to you too; my words and some thoughts now belong to you too.

   ~ ☼ ~

These words depict some of the most special moments of my life; they enshrine some of my most innate feelings and thoughts.  

   ~ ☼ ~

These thoughts entail prostration and emotions too, questions and conversations too, prophecies and humanity too; these words reflect not only my worship but my (perceived) infinitely too, my helplessness and desperation too, my plea and spirituality too.

  ~ ☼ ~

My request to you, if you feel disinterested in my words or thoughts, don’t disrespect or dishonour them, these words contain the intensity of my feelings.

    ~ ☼ ~

If these words and thoughts don’t carry any importance for you, just leave them alone; these words and thoughts are quite important for those for whom you don’t care; so, they are dear to me, and those who are not born yet.

    ~ ☼ ~

Only these words and thoughts are left behind when we depart from this world; no one carries one’s status, throne and crown, prestige or position from this world when one departs from here.

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This world is just a thought where all big and small dreams live and thrive; day and night, we all remain occupied with mundane things but only to perish in the end.

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I have fallen in love with a language, which is called Urdu; it has something that others may not have. I concede Urdu may not be my mother tongue but, without doubt, it is as sweet and complete as my mother tongue.

    ~ ☼ ~

I am grateful to those angles who introduced me to Urdu; the depth of (Mirza) Ghalib thoughts though the velvety and golden voice of Jagjit (Singh) introduced me to Talat (Mahmood and Aziz), Mehdi (Hassan) and (Pankaj) Udhas) and then I also met Majaz (Lakhnawi, 1911-55), Maqdhoom (Mohiuddin, 1908-1969), Sahir (Ludhianvi, 1921-1980), Wasim (Barelvi) and (Javed) Akhtar.

       ~ ☼ ~       ~ ☼ ~       ~ ☼ ~       ~ ☼ ~       ~ ☼ ~       ~ ☼ ~       ~ ☼ ~

Bill Koul (Perth, 30 April 2020)

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