Urdu

maut tu ek kavita hai
mujhse ek kavita ka vadaa hai, milegi mujhko

doobti nabzon mein jab dard ko neend aane lage
zard sa chehra liye chaand ufaq tak pahunche
din abhi paani mein ho, raat kinare ke kareeb
na andhera ho, na ujala ho
na aadhi raat, na din
jism jab khatm ho aur rooh ko saans aae

mujhse ek kavita ka vadaa hai milegi mujhko.

English

Death, you are a poem.
I've been promised by a poem, that it shall be mine.

As the pulse of life recedes, when pain & suffering are about to sleep
And a yellowish (young) moon starts to rise and reach its zenith
The day is yet to sink in water, as the night waits, nigh, to the shore
It's not dark, it's not bright
it's neither midnight nor high noon
And as the body loses material, the free soul gets seeped with (fresh) air

I've been promised by a poem that it shall be mine.

Source:

Film: Anand


This is a poem from one of my favourite films, Anand (and yes, I know that it is an anagram of my name, or vice versa). I've taken and slightly modified the translation from here.

There is something about death. Our relationship with it changes over time yet death itself is ever-present. I know that I'm not afraid of death or dying, but it makes me uncomfortable. It makes me uncomfortable in the same way that the thought of losing my hands or legs makes me uncomfortable - except multiply that by a million or so. The undiscover'd country from whose bourn no traveller returns certainly puzzles the will.

It seems odd then to be serenading death when so many succumb to it through unfortunate means. But death does not care. It may just be the only future-proof guarantee that one can make to another.

For some reason this poem reminds me of the saying: "there are no atheists in foxholes." I quite disagree with that. In fact, I'd wager just the opposite. It is belief (and its details) that wanes and matters very little in foxholes. The film No Man's Land captured it beautifully. While in the foxhole we rest a little all the while fighting for survival and we hold all the hands we can without asking or judging. It is precisely when we leave the foxhole that we fight each other based on our differences in what we believe, the colours of our skin or what kinds of hats we wear.

Death is something we share with everything that lives, well, that and life.