‘Rahiye Ab Aisi Jagah’ by Mirza Ghalib


Its time to now go somewhere no one lives and there nest
Where conversation will remain quiet, where tongues will be at rest

There a house without doors, floors and walls will I erect
So no need to keep vigil, so no neighbours to expect

Should I fall ill and ail, there’ll be no-one to tend to me
And perchance death takes me away, no bemoaners there’ll be.



rahiye ab aisi jagah chalkar jahan koi na ho
hamaukhan koi na ho aur hamzaban koi na ho

bedar-o-diwar sa ik ghar banaya chahye
koi hamsaya na ho aur pasban koi na ho

pariye gar bimar to koi na ho timardar
aur agar mar jaiye to nauhakhwan koi na ho


This sad, poignant poem was written at a time when Ghalib had had enough of the tragedies life had thrown at him and after witnessing the horrors of human suffering in the aftermath of the 1857 rebellion in Delhi.

It brings to my mind a kafi by Hazrat Bulle Shah which says:

chal buleya uthe chaliye
jithe sare wasan anney
na koi sadi zaat pachane
te na koi saanu manne

Come, Bulle, lets go someplace
Where everyone can’t see
Where no one can tell my race
Where no one will listen to me

Great minds thinking alike, I suppose.



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