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Atul’s Song A Day- A choice collection of Hindi Film & Non-Film Songs

Ab kyaa bataun main tere milne se kyaa milaa

Posted on: July 6, 2011


This article is written by Sudhir, a fellow enthusiast of Hindi movie music and a regular contributor to this blog.

The poetry rendered to life by Saigal saab, is limited and yet infinite. By all accounts, the total recordings available of the songs and ghazals sung by him is less than 200. And yet, the presence of these countable offerings is infinite in themselves. Every time I pick up a recording to listen, it sounds new, fresh, and with new meanings and inflections. Such is the depth and range of this divine voice, that it is impossible to fathom it fully, no matter how many times one listens.

This post is about another amazing piece of poetry rendered alive so effortlessly by this genius of musical sound. The ghazal is authored by Seemab Akbarabaadi. Seemab, a short statured giant of Urdu literature, is one of the most prolific writers in Urdu and Persian in the twentieth century. He authored more than 75 works of literature that included poetry, stories, plays, essays, and his magnum opus Wahi-e-Manzoom, a translation of the Holy Quran into Urdu verse. This last mentioned literary work was sadly published 30 years after his death in 1951.

Seemab was a disciple of the famed Daag Dehlawi, and in turn the list of his own disciples reads like a impressive who’s who in the field of twentieth century Urdu poetry; Saagar Nizami, Zia Fatehabadi, Raaz Chandpuri, Zia Jalandhari, Nissar Itaawi, Turfa Qureshi and many more. (Please see Seemab Akbarabadi on this stalwart of Urdu literature.)

This ghazal is a bitter sweet articulation of the happiness and pain that accompanies the story and experiences of love. The poet starts off by asserting that he became aware of his own existence only when he found love, and yet the life continues to be that of turmoil and sadness. Love complements and makes the existence complete, and yet it leaves so much to be desired. The pain of love is a thing of beauty and joy in itself. The verses are such a wonderful enunciation of the joys, the sorrows and the helplessness of love. This is such a superlative ghazal, you will want to hear it again and again, and each time you will find a new depth to the same words.

ab kyaa bataaun mein tere milne se kyaa milaa
irfaan e gam huaa mujhe apna pataa milaa

The attainments of love are so overwhelming – what can I say about them. What can I say of having met you in my life – it made me cognizant of the existence of my own heart, and the manifestation of the tender anguish within. For the first time my own existence was in a way proved to me,

Kyaa bataaun = what can I tell
Tere milne = meeting you; however the intended emotion goes much deeper, of having found, having realized
Kyaa milaa = what is the achievement, realization (of having met you)
Gam = sorrow
Irfaan = wisdom, knowledge
Irfaan e gam = the realization of the aches of sorrow
Pataa = literally this means address; figuratively it means the location, whereabouts, or even the proof of existence
Apna pataa milaa = became aware of myself, my own existence

jab door tak na koi faqeer aashnaa milaa
tera niyaazmand tere dar se jaa milaa

When I searched for and could not find a beggar so needy as myself. (The word used here is ‘aashnaa’ – meaning one who understands, one who knows). Or when I could not find another who could empathize, understand my destitution, my need.

I found myself at your doorstep, craving for you (and begging for your understanding).
In other words, no one can understand my craving for you; it is only you who can, it is only your doorstep where I can find succor.

Faqeer = beggar, mendicant
Aashnaa = one who knows, who is familiar, who understands, who empathizes, a friend
Niyaazmand = one having desires, cravings
Tera niyaazmand = having a desire for you
Dar = doorstep

manzil mili muraad mili mudda’aa milaa
sab kuchh mujhe milaa jo tera naqsh e paa milaa

During my journeys of search, when I found the imprints of your feet, that was the culmination of all my searches – I found my destinations attained, my ambitions realized, and my petitions / entreaties accepted.

Manzil = destination
Muraad = ambition, desire
Mudda’aa = petition, prayer, entreaty
Naqsh = imprint
Naqsh e paa = footprints; imprints of your feet.

ya zakhm e dil ko chir ke seene se phenk de
ya aitraaf kar ke nishaan e wafaa milaa

Either you agree that you found the target (my heart) with your arrows, or else, rip out the wounded heart from my body, my existence and throw it away. Another way to put this emotion is – either say that you love me too, or else rip out my heart and end my existence.

Zakhm e dil = wounded heart or wound of the heart
Cheer = cut out, rip out
Seena = body
Phenk de = throw away
Aitraaf = to agree
Nishaan = target
Nishaan e wafaa = the target of love, heart

seemab ko shagufta na dekhaa tamaam umra
kambakht jab milaa hamen gam aashnaa milaa

For all his life, no one did ever see Seemab (poet reference to self) in a state of happiness, flourishing. Whenever chanced upon, the unfortunate wretch was always accompanied by unhappiness.

Seemab = poet’s reference to himself
Shagufta = blooming, flourishing, happy
Dekhaa = seen, or to see
Tamaam umr = for entire life
Kambakht = unfortunate, wretched
Jab milaa hamen = whenever encountered
Aashnaa = one who knows, who is familiar, who understands, who empathizes, a friend
Gam aashnaa = befriended with sorrow, in a state of sadness, unhappiness

Click on the link and let this bitter-sweet melody slowly soak in to the innermost.


Song-Ab kyaa bataaun main tere milne se kyaa milaa (Saigal NFS) (1940) Singer-K L Saigal, Lyrics-Seemab Akbarabadi

Lyrics

haan haaan ay
ab kyaa bataaun main tere milne se kyaa milaa
haan haan aay
irfaan e gam huaa mujhe dil ka pataa milaa
irfaan e gam huaa mujhe dil ka pataa milaa
irfaan e gam huaa mujhe dil ka pataa milaa
irfaan e gam huaa mujhe dil ka pataa milaa

jab door tak na koi faqeer aashnaa milaa
heyyyy ay
jab door tak na koi faqeer aashnaa milaa
tera niaazmand tere dar pe jaa milaa
tera niaazmand tere dar pe jaa milaa

manzil mili muraad mili mudda’aa milaa
haaaan ay
manzil mili muraad mili mudda’aa milaa
sab kuchh mujhe milaa jo tera naqsh e paa milaa
sab kuchh mujhe milaa jo tera naqsh e paa milaa

ya zakhm e dil ko cheer ke seene se phenk de
ya zakhm e dil ko cheer ke seene se phenk de
ya aitraaf kar ke nishaan e wafaa milaa
ya aitraaf kar ka nishaan e wafaa milaa
ab kyaa bataaun main tere milne se kyaa milaa

seemab ko shagufta na dekhaa tamaam umr
seemab ko shagufta na dekhaa tamaam umr
kambakht jab milaa hamen gam aashnaa milaa
kambakht jab milaa hamen gam aashnaa milaa
ab kyaa bataaun main tere milne se kyaa milaa

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3 Responses to "Ab kyaa bataun main tere milne se kyaa milaa"

In the lyrics provided by you as above, in the fourth and fifth lines of the second stanza, the word is “se” and not “pe”, that is, “tera niaazmand tere dar se jaa milaa”. This may be corrected and the comment deleted after attending to it.

Wonderful rendition and wah wah explanation

Audio clip:

How does this ghazal sounds in 2018 in retro style? Listen to the Video clip below:

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