Wednesday, January 21, 2009

The Window

How many crosses are set in my window.
Each the color of its Messiah's blood.
Each with its own urge for salvation.

On one spring clouds are sacrificed.
On one the shining moon is murdered.
On one the branches divide in half.
On one the winds and breezes die.

Every day the gods of compassion and beauty
Come to my sad house covered in gore.
And every day their martyred bodies
Are raised intact before my eyes.

- Faiz Ahmed Faiz (translation mine)

The original:


Gadi hai kitni saleebein mere dareeche mein
Harek apne maseeha ke khoon ka rang liye
Harek vasle-khudavand ki umang liye.

Kisi pe karte hain abre-e-bahaar ko qurbaan
Kisi pe qatl mahe-taabnaak karte hain
Kisi pe hoti hai sarmast shaakhsar do-neem
Kisie pa baad-e-saba ko halaak karte hain

Har aaye din ye khudavandgaane-meher-o-jamaal
Lahoo mein gark mere gamkade main aate hain
Aur aaye din meri nazron ka saamne unke
Shaheed jism salamat uthaye jaate hain


km said...

Er...what on earth does "gadi" mean?

Very enjoyable translation, as always.

Equivocal said...

not sure about the word "gore"-- doesn't quite ring right for me...?

km said...

@Equivocal: I am guessing "splattered in blood" would make it sound like the Texas Chainsaw Massacre? :)