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

Chaand tanha hai aasmaan tanha

Posted on: March 31, 2013


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

A remembrance of today that must include her own expressions. Mahajabeen was an emotional personality, and as with all emotional people, there is an expression of the artist in ways more than one. A poetess in her own right, she is known to have been writing couplets and ghazals from a very young age. And when her life started on downhill glide, it was the drink that became a faithful companion, and it was her pen that became an outlet for her to tell the world, about her sorrows and her wounds.

Poetry was in her blood. Her father Ali Baksh was an Urdu poet and attached with Parsi theatre. Her mother, Iqbal Bano was actually a stage artist, Kamini, with lineage tracing back to the Rabindranath Tagore’s family. And so the arts, the words and the expressions kind of came very naturally to her.

In 1970, an LP was published. Publishing company was Polydor. The title of the LP – ‘I Write, I Recite’. This LP has nine ghazals written and sung by herself. No collection of ghazals of any values may ever be complete without this LP, for this is the compilation of the only nine poems that she has recorded in her own voice.

Her poetry is a cup overflowing with sadness – sadness of that which was not achieved in life, sadness of incompleteness, sadness of being lonely, and sadness of remaining unacknowledged as a human being and as a woman, by the people who mattered in her life.

This ghazal from her LP is one of my favorites. Or I should say, one of the nine of my favorites. A splendid manifestation of the emotions into words. And a fitting remembrance of the anniversary of her passing away.

The music is by Khayyaam Sb, who has so lovingly enclosed these words in a minimal sound of the tingling santoor. And nothing more.

A ghazal to treasure, an LP to treasure.

chaand tanhaa hai aasmaan tanhaa
dil milaa hai kahaan kahaan tanhaa

They be, appear to be together
Yet they are lonely
In their own ways
The endless expanse of the sky
Spread out alone
And the radiant moon
Trudging alone
Wherever you may meet this heart
You will find it forlorn
Thumping along, alone

(NOTE: the starting words ‘chaand tanhaa’ is probably an expression of self, for she was named ‘Mahjabeen’ – the moon faced)

Tanhaa – alone

bujh gayee aas chhup gayaa taaraa
thartharaataa rahaa dhuaan tanhaa

The star that was my destiny
Has slipped below the horizon
And the flickering light of hope
Is snuffed out
Just the smoke remains
Trembling alone

zindagi kyaa isi ko kehte hain
jism tanhaa hai aur jaan tanhaa

Is this what life was meant to be
Not so, I had thought
For how can it be
That the soul treks alone
Separate
And the body stays alone
Separate
How can this be life

hamasafar koi gar miley bhi kahin
donon chalte rahe tanhaa tanhaa

What are these paths
These passages of life
You think you have found a fellow traveler
How come they trudge along
Yet are walking alone
Walking lonely

jalti bujhti si roshni ke parey
simtaa simtaa sa ek makaan tanhaa
raah dekha karega sadiyon tak
chhod jaayenge ye jahaan tanhaa

Away from the blinking lights
Away from the beating heart
There is a lonely deserted house
That cringes and cowers alone
I will go
Alone
And leave this world, alone
It will wait for me
Watching my homecoming paths
For centuries to come
For ages to come


Song-Chaand tanha hai aasmaan tanha (Meena Kumari NFS)(1970) Singer-Meena Kumari, Lyrics-Meena Kumari, MD-Khayyam

Lyrics

chaand tanhaa hai
aasmaan tanhaa
chaand tanhaa hai
aasmaan tanhaa
dil milaa hai kahaan kahaan tanhaa
dil milaa hai kahaan kahaan tanhaa
chaand tanhaa hai

bujh gayee aas
chhup gayaa taaraa
bujh gayee aas
chhup gayaa taaraa
thartharaataa rahaa dhuaan tanhaa
thartharaataa rahaa dhuaan tanhaa
chaand tanhaa hai

zindagi kyaa isi ko kehte hain
zindagi kyaa isi ko kehate hain
jism tanhaa hai aur jaan tanhaa
jism tanhaa hai aur jaan tanhaa
chaand tanhaa hai

hamasafar koi gar miley bhi kahin
hamasafar koi gar miley bhi kahin
donon chalte rahe tanhaa tanhaa
donon chalte rahe tanhaa tanhaa
chaand tanhaa hai

jalti bujhti si roshni ke parey
jalti bujhti si roshni ke parey
simtaa simtaa sa ek makaan tanhaa
simtaa simtaa sa ek makaan tanhaa
raah dekha karega sadiyon tak
raah dekha karega sadiyon tak
chhod jaayenge ye jahaan tanhaa
chhod jaayenge ye jahaan tanhaa
chhod jaayenge ye jahaan tanhaa

———————————————–
Hindi script lyrics (Provided by Sudhir)
———————————————–
चाँद तन्हा है आसमान तन्हा
चाँद तन्हा है आसमान तन्हा
दिल मिला है कहाँ कहाँ तन्हा
दिल मिला है कहाँ कहाँ तन्हा
चाँद तन्हा है

बुझ गयी आस छुप गया तारा
बुझ गयी आस छुप गया तारा
थरथराता रहा धुआँ तन्हा
थरथराता रहा धुआँ तन्हा
चाँद तन्हा है

ज़िंदगी क्या इसी को कहते हैं
ज़िंदगी क्या इसी को कहते हैं
जिस्म तन्हा है और जां तन्हा
जिस्म तन्हा है और जां तन्हा
चाँद तन्हा है

हमसफर कोई गर मिले भी कहीं
हमसफर कोई गर मिले भी कहीं
दोनों चलते रहे तन्हा तन्हा
दोनों चलते रहे तन्हा तन्हा
चाँद तन्हा है

जलती बुझती सी रोशनी के परे
जलती बुझती सी रोशनी के परे
सिमटा सिमटा सा एक मकां तन्हा
सिमटा सिमटा सा एक मकां तन्हा
राह देखा करेगा सदियों तक
राह देखा करेगा सदियों तक
छोड़ जाएँगे ये जहाँ तन्हा
छोड़ जाएँगे ये जहाँ तन्हा
छोड़ जाएँगे ये जहाँ तन्हा

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4 Responses to "Chaand tanha hai aasmaan tanha"

I love this ghazal too. Thank you for posting about it. I am moved with the deep sadness that her life became. She was too sensitive to be able to cope with life.

RIP Meena Kumari.

Like

Have this ghazal in my collection and today it is updated with the additional information – thanks to Sudhir ji ! sadness of being lonely, read this lines ” zindagi kyaa isi ko kehte hain,jism tanhaa hai aur jaan tanhaa” , that tell us what she had gone through! thanks for this excellent post Sudhir ji !!!

Like

“Raah dekha karenge sadiyon tak, chhod jayenge yeh jagan tanha” Kya baat hai!! For many, the wait never ends

Like

क्या बात है! सुभानल्ला!

Like

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