Tuesday, September 13, 2011

Panaah (Pukhraj) - Gair-filmi

We all are aware of most of Gulzar's body of work as a lyricist in Bollywood. So I thought it might be a good idea to introduce a few of his gair-filmi poems as well. Presenting the first in this series, a nazm titled 'Panaah' from Gulzar's collection 'Pukhraj', along with its English translation.


उखाड़ दो अरज़-ओ-तूल खूंटों से बस्तियों के
समेटो सडकें, लपेटो राहें
उखाड़ दो शहर का कशीदा
कि ईंट - गारे से घर नहीं बन सका किसी का

पनाह मिल जाए रूह को जिसका हाथ छूकर
उसी हथेली पे घर बना लो
कि घर वही है
और पनाह भी

तुम्हारे हाथों में मैंने देखी थी अपनी एक लकीर, सोनां

अरज़-ओ-तूल = Araz-o-tool = Length and breadth
कशीदा = Kasheeda = Embroidery


Rip open the spread of the civilization
Pick up the roads, roll up every street
Tear apart the neatly-embroidered rows of this city
'Cause bricks and mortar can't make a home

If the touch of a hand comforts your soul,
Choose this hand to build your home
'Cause that alone, is your home
And that alone, is your haven

In the lines on your hand, my beloved, I found a line of my own.

Hope you enjoyed the nazm; and liked its translation and the sketch.


  1. nazm toh bahot khoob hai...
    thanks for sharing.

    Share more of these non-filmi ones too !


  2. Lovely!! I loved the last four lines the most...really amazing work Kanu!! :)

  3. @Sam:
    thanks for your first comment! :) will surely share more of his non-filmi nazms.

    thanks a ton! :)

  4. Kanu as good as Gulzar's nazm is, your interpretation actually completes it :) You suddenly feel in love after reading Gulzar's poetry. The beauty is you can always form your meanings :) Wonderful!

  5. thanks Swati :)
    I remember your mom is a big Gulzar 'saab' fan, isn't she? :D

  6. kanu, very nice. mummy

  7. my fav line wud be- "पनाह मिल जाए रूह को जिसका हाथ छूकर
    उसी हथेली पे घर बना लो" ... And I guess the two couplets of start indicates towards the poor ppl being thrown away out of slums [I guess haan!]. The use of word 'kasheeda' makes me guess so. Coz what I've understood of Gulzar till date reminds me that he uses some twisted words to notify something 'small' whereas he uses simple words to notify 'big' things.

  8. @Mummy:
    arey waah, hum soch hi rahe the aap padhengi ya nahin!

  9. @Rahul Bhomia:
    I don't think this poem is about poor and/or slums. But about the fact that homes are not made with stones/bricks/mortar, but by emotions and feelings.

  10. I said 'I guess' ... ~~ !! and Gulzar's poetry is such that one can have varied meanings. It can be A for one and Z for other.

  11. big thoughts with simple words..this is what gulzar sir is...mindblowing


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