Those Days

How many times have you logged onto youtube, and not known what you want to type in the search bar? Happens quite often to me. This time, a memory suddenly came to me, and i went where it took me. To this song.

An old favourite, a song which willy-nilly brings tears to the eyes. Reminds me of playing hide-and-seek when there were power-cuts. Or going home with bruised knees from falling while playing. Of days which, I suppose, are our fondest memory.

For those who dont understand the Urdu, heres the translation:

ye daulat bhi le lo, ye shoharat bhi le lo

Take away the fame and the fortune which this world has given me

bhale chhin lo mujhase meri javaani

You can snatch from me my youth

magar mujhako lauta do bachapan ka saavan

But return to me the lush-green, rain-drenched memories of my childhood

vo kaagaz ki kashti, vo baarish ka paani

And that paper boat, that stream of rain water

muhalle ki sabase nishaani puraani

The oldest landmark, the oldest relic of the neighbourhood

vo budhiya jise bachche kahate the naani

That old woman we kids used to call Grandma

vo naani ki baaton mein pariyon ka dera

Those fairies that used to live in Grandma’s stories and enchant us

vo chahare ki jhuriryon mein sadiyon ka phera

The centuries of history in the wrinkles on her face

bhulaaye nahin bhuul sakata hai koi

One cannot forget even if one tries

vo chhoti si raatein vo lambi kahaani

Those oh so short nights, and the long tales of Grandma

kadi dhuup mein apane ghar se nikalana

Running to meet your friends in the scorching mid-day sun

vo chidiya vo bul-bul vo titali pakadana

Listening to the chirping of the birds, chasing those butterflies

vo gudiya ki shaadi mein ladana jhagadana

Those serious fights we used to have during our dolls’ weddings

vo jhuulon se girana vo gir ke sambhalana

Falling from the swing, and getting up laughing, unmindful of the bruised knees or elbows

vo pital ke chhallon ke pyaare se tohafe

Those precious, lovely gifts of small, brass rings, ever so cherished

vo tuuti hui chuudiyon ki nishaani

Those broken shards of glass bangles which we nevertheless used to store away as keepsakes of friends

kabhi ret ke uunche tilon pe jaana

Running onto those sand-dunes

gharonde banaana banaake mitaana

Making those sand-houses, making and demolishing them

vo maasuum chaahat ki tasvir apani

That picture of our innocence, of our laughter, our little love of life

vo khvaabon khilaunon ki jaagir apani

That kingdom of ours, made of our toys, and our dreams, those dreams …

na duniya ka gam tha na rishton ke bandhan

We were the kings; there were no wordly worries, nor the ties of myriad relations

badi khuubasuurat thi vo zindagaani

That life was oh so beautiful
PS: I have taken some poetic license, this is not a literal translation.
So tell me, friends, do you still remember that old woman who, bent with age, with her walking stick and dentures, was still the prettiest woman in your mind’s eye? I remember … my grandmother!
This entry was posted in Children, Entertainment, Memories, Poetry and tagged , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

3 Responses to Those Days

  1. Atul says:

    This so reminds of the streets where i was raised, in Delhi … the mohalla, flying kits onj the rooftops, and of course, of course … Grandma! and her stories!! they seemed so, so real then, and the feelings of those stories seem to real even now!


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