Urdu is not to be learnt. It’s to be consumed in.
Urdu is one the most beautiful languages of the world. The words have a soulful bent to them and the phrases dive right into the ocean of utter poignancy. Even if you don’t know their meaning, the words in Urdu manifest themselves in your mind. You carry the burden of not knowing its meaning until you do and then, you will contain both, the ethereal word and its meaning, within you.
In ‘Masti Ki Paathshaala’, let”s learn some of these words and their derivative meanings in a poem by Ghalib. Beware, a word can have several meanings. We have added the most apt meaning in respect with the poem. Before using a word or phrase in your writing, do consult an Urdu connoisseur.
Baazicha-aie-atfaal by Ghalib..
Baazicha-aie-Atfaal* Hai Duniya, Mere Aage (playground) Hota Hai Shaboroze* Tamasha Mere Aage(dawn & dusk) I perceive the world as a playground Where dawn and dusk appear in eternal rounds Ik Khel Hai Aurang-e-suleman*, Mere Nazdeek(throne of suleman) Ik Baat Hai Ajaaz-a-Maseehah*, Mere Aage(miracles of messiah) In His Universal form is a plaything the throne of Solomon The miracles of the Messiah seem so ordinary in my eyes Juz Naam, Nahin Surat-a-aalam* Mujhe Manzoor (face of the universe) Juz Vaham, Nahin Hasti-e-ashiya*, Mere Aage (soul of the matter) Without name I cannot comprehend any form Illusionary but is the identity of all objects Hota Hai Nihan Gard Mein Sahra, Mere Hote Ghista Hai Jabin* Khak Pe Dariya, Mere Aage (forehead) My anguish envelopes the entire desert Silently flows the river in front of my floods Mat Poochh, Ki Kya Haal Hai Mera, Tere Peeche Tu Dekh Ki Kya Rung Hai Tera, Mere Aage Ask not what separation has done to me Just see your poise when I come in front of you Sach Kehte Ho Khudbeen-o-Khuddara* Hun, Kyon Na Hun? (egotistical & proud) Baitha Hai Butt-a-Aaeena-Seema*, Mere Aage (limited projection in the mirror) Truly you say that I am egotistical and proud It is the reflection, O friend, in your limited mirror Phir Dekhiye, Andaz-e-Gul-Afshani-e-Guftaar* (style and charm of conversation) Rakh De Koyee Paimana-o-Sahba* Mere Aage (goblet and wine) To appreciate the style and charm of conversation Just bring in the goblet and wine Nafrat Ka Guman Guzre Hai, Mein Rushk* Se Guzra (Envy) Kyonkar Kahun, Lo Naam Na Unka Mere Aage Hatred manifests due to my envious mind Thus I say, don’t take his name in front of me Iman Mujhe Roke Hai, To Khenche Hai Mujhe Kufr* (temptations) Kaba Mere Peeche Hai, Kalisa Mere Aage Faith stops me while temptations attract Inspite of Kaaba behind and church ahead Aashiq Hun, Per Mashook-Farebi Hai Mera Kaam Majnun Ko Bura Kehti Hai Laila Mere Aage I am the Lover, yet notorious is my charm Thus Laila calls names to Majnu in front of me Khush Hote Hain, Pur, Vasl Mein Yon Marr Nahin Jaate Aayee Shab-a-Hijran* Ki Tamanna Mere Aage (night of seperation) “Dies” not one though the union is a delight In premonition of the separation night Hai Moujzan* Ik Kulzum-e-Khuun*, Kaash, Yahi Ho (wave ; sea of blood) Aata Hai, Abhi Dekhiye, Kya Kya, Mere Aage Alas, this be it, the turbulent wave in the sea of blood I know not what else is in store ahead of me Go Hath Mein Jumbish* Nahin, Aankhon Mein To Dum Hai (movement) Rahne Do Abhi Sagar-O-Meena*, Mere Aage (wine & goblet) Though the hands don’t move, the eyes are alive Wine and goblet, let them stay in front of me Humpesh-O-Hummastrab-O-Humraaz* Hai Mera
Ghalib to Bura Kyon Kaho, Accha Mere Aage Conscience is companion and trusted friend Says “Ghalib”, don’t pass any judgments in front of me
I hope you liked today’s learning. Don’t forget to impart this knowledge to others. Let’s share some love.
– SKB for Aaj Sirhaane