‘Kat Jayegi Umr-e-Chand Rozan’ – ?

These scant days of life will before long be gone
Why worry then about every eve and every dawn?

kat jayegi umr-e-chand rozan
(pass will life-of-few days)
fikr-e-shaam-o-pagah kya hai?
(care/worry-of-evening and tomorrow/morning what is?
I heard this in ‘Shatranj Ke Khiladi’ by Satyajit Ray. I tried to trace its origin but could not; nevertheless, the beauty and elegance of the verse inspired me enough to try to translate it. It’s a typical example of great Urdu poetry – brief, profound and with a zen-like clarity about the human condition. Judging by its quality, I’d wager it’s by one of the poets of the first rank (Mir, Ghalib, et al).


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