Muzaffarabad – Poems from Kashmir

March 27, 2006

Gunung-gunung Kashmir yang megah (AGUSTINUS WIBOWO)

The beautiful Kashmir is endless source of inspiration

During my stay in the area, people kept teaching me various things to be more proper Pakistani or Urdu speakers. That was including those meaningless Noraseri Hindko salaams of ‘gay Barhean’ or ‘mu ko ni pata’. But here I would like to share some interesting ones.

This was the national poem (komi trana) of Kashmir. National poem? Yes, Kashmir was still regarded as ‘not Pakistan’; it had its own flag and national anthem also. The national poem had simple words, nice rhyming, and easy to remember. So, let’s start.
Baghon aur Baharonwalla (the gardens and the spring)
Daryaon aur Kohsaronwalla (the rivers and the mountains)
Jannat ki Nazaronwalla (the heavenly scenery)
Jammu Kashmir HAmira (Jammu and Kashmir are ours)
Vatan HAmira, Azad Kashmir, Azad Kashmir, Azad Kashmir (Our Homeland is the Free Kashmir)

The part with ‘jannat’, ‘heaven’, I had problem with my memory. We were in the jeep and the guys asked me to read the poem to them. As I remembered that heaven was always to be coupled with hell, so I read ‘jannat aur jahanamwalla’, ‘the heaven and hell’. People laughed. Even the ladies hiding their face under the purdah who were sitting in front of me could not help but giggling. “Oi, our Kashmir is not hell!” But due to the disaster, they also added “Baris aur zalzalonwalla (the rain and the earthquakes)”. Indeed, our jeep was troubling to pass the road path that was muddied by the heavy rain.

Now you may try to read this poem loudly in Srinagar.

Another poem, not a honourable one.
Malan ki beti (the daughter of a female gardener)
Mujhe karne do (give me a flower of ‘karne’)
Karne ke mausam nehi hai (but it was not the season of ‘karne’)
Mali se marwa lo (so take the ‘marwa’ flower from the gardener instead)

Why not honorable? The poem had double meaning. The gardener, daughter, season, karne, and marwa all had the other meanings, and quite dirty ones. What meaning?

I will tell you later.


At night.

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