Tuesday, March 08, 2011

International Women's Day

This is the third time Majaaz figures in a post on this space. This time it’s to mark this International Women’s Day through his beautifully powerful Nazm, urging the women of India in the pre-independence days to get involved in the freedom movement. Apart from being the great Romantic poet that he was, the man had a strong revolutionary / progressive side too.

I’ve also tried translating the Ghazal for my non-Urdu (English friendly) friends.

Hijaab-e-fitna parwar ab utha leti to achha thaa,
Khud apne husn ko parda bana leti to achha thaa.

Teri neechi nazar khud teri ismat ki muhafiz hai,
Tu is nashtar ki tezi aazma leti to achha thaa.

Teri maathe pe ye aanchal bahut hi khoob hai lekin,
Tu is aaNchal se ik parcham bana leti to achha thaa.

Translation is as follows:

If you now raise the veil of revolt, it would be good,
And instead make your beauty a veil, it would be good.

Your lowered gaze is itself a protector of your purity,
If you now raise your eyes and test the sharpness of it, it would be good.

The cloth covering your head is no doubt a good thing,
But if you make a flag out of it, it would be good.

For my other two posts on the great poet, you can go here and here.