mazdoor-arsh malsiyani

For word meanings and explanatory discussion in English click on the “English” or “Notes” tab.

مزدور ۔ بالمُکُند عرش ملسیانی

۱

جُون کی گرمی کڑکتی دھُوپ لُو چلتی ہوئی

ہر گھڑی مزدور کے سر سے قضا ٹلتی ہوئی

سر پہ گارے کی کڑھائی اور دیوارِ بلند

ہانپتا وہ چڑھ رہا ہے لے کے ہمت کی کمند

۲

پاڑ پر پہنچا تو اِک گالی سُنی معمار سے

جی میں آیا سر کو ٹکرا دے اسی دیوار سے

ہائے اس مظلوم کی مجبوریاں نا چاریاں

جان کا آزار ہیں افلاس کی بیماریاں

۳

دل میں کہتا ہے کہ یہ معمار بھی مزدور ہے

پھر یہی جانِ حزیں کیوں اس قدر مقہور ہے

اِس کی اُجرت مجھ سے دگنی ہے مگر کم ہے شعور

تمکنت کس بات پر کس چیز پر اتنا غرور

۴

میں اگر نادار ہوں یہ بھی نہیں سرمایہ دار

بھُوت وہ ہے کس بڑائی کا جو اس پر ہے سوار

اینٹ گارا میں نہ دوں اس کو تو یہ کس کام کا

اصل میں معمار میں ہوں یہ فقط ہے نام کا

۵

میری ہِمّت کہہ رہیں ہیں کاخ دیوان بلند

آہ اس پر بھی میں دنیا میں ہوں اتنا مستمند

لگ گیا پھر کام میں یہ سوچ کر وہ بد نصیب

اے خدا دنیا میں اتنا بھی نہ ہو کوئی غریب

۶

دن ڈھلا جس وقت مالک بھی مکاں کا آ گیا

اک سکوت مرگ سا دیوار و در پر چھا گیا

کانپتا رہتا ہے ہر مزدور جس کے نام سے

سب اِسی دھُن میں تھے وہ خوش ہو ہمارے کام سے

۷

اس کی پیشانی پہ لیکن بل ذرا آنے لگے

پھن اُٹھا کر تمکنت کے سانپ لہرانے لگے

سب سے پہلے اس نے گالی دی اسی معمار کو

اپنی ملکیت جو سمجھا تھا ہر اک دیوار کو

۸

جوش نخوت سے کہا اس نے کہ اے پاجی لعیں

کل جہاں تک تھی گئی دیوار اب بھی ہے وہیں

کیا کیا ہے تو نے دن بھر میں ذرا مجھ کو بتا

یوں تکبُّر میں وہ آ کر جائزہ لینے لگا

۹

دل میں وہ مزدور پھر کہنے لگا اُف رے غضب

جو بھی اس دنیا میں ہیں فرعون ہیں وہ سب کے سب

جس کا جس پر بس چلے پامال کرتا ہے اُسے

خود اگر خوش حال ہے بد حال کرتا ہے اُسے

۱۰

کیا کہوں سرمایہ داروں کے ستم کی داستاں

دیدۂ مزدور ہے مزدور سے بھی خوں فشاں

جس کی لاٹھی اس کی بھینس اس مثل کو صادق سمجھ

یہ سمجھ کر اس خدائے پاک کو رازق سمجھ

मज़्दूर – बालमुकुन्द अर्श मल्सियानी

जून की गर्मी कड़कती धूप लू चलती हुई

हर घड़ी मज़दूर के सर से क़ज़ा टलती हुई

सर पे गारे की कढ़ाई और दीवार-ए-बुलंद

हाँफता वो चढ़ रहा है ले के हिम्मत की कमंद

पाड़ पर पहुँचा तो एक गाली सुनी मे’मार से

जी में आया सर को टकरा दे उसी दीवार से

हाए उस मज़लूम की मजबूरियाँ ना-चारियाँ

जान का आज़ार हैं इफ़्लास की बीमारियाँ

दिल में कहता है कि ये मे’मार भी मज़दूर है

फिर यही जान-ए-हज़ीं क्यूँ इस क़दर मक़हूर है

उस की उजरत मुझ से दुगुनी है मगर कम है शुऊ’र

तमकनत किस बात पर किस चीज़ पर इतना ग़ुरूर

मैं अगर नादार हूँ ये भी नहीं सरमाया-दार

भूत वो है किस बड़ाई का जो उस पर है सवार

ईंट गारा मैं न दूँ उस को तो ये किस काम का

अस्ल में मे’मार मैं हूँ ये फ़क़त है नाम का

मेरी हिम्मत कह रहीं हैं काख़-ए-दीवान-ए-बुलंद

आह इस पर भी मैं दुनिया में हूँ इतना मुस्तमंद

लग गया फिर काम में ये सोच कर वो बद-नसीब

ऐ ख़ुदा दुनिया में इतना भी न हो कोई ग़रीब

दिन ढला जिस वक़्त मालिक भी मकाँ का आ गया

इक सुकूत-ए-मर्ग सा दीवार-ओ-दर पर छा गया

काँपता रहता है हर मज़्दूर जिस के नाम से

सब उसी धुन में थे वो ख़ुश हो हमारे काम से

उस की पेशानी पे लेकिन बल ज़रा आने लगे

फन उठा कर तमकनत के साँप लहराने लगे

सब से पहले उस ने गाली दी उसी मे’मार को

अपनी मिल्किय्यत जो समझा था हर इक दीवार को

जोश-ए-नख़वत से कहा उस ने कि ऐ पाजी लईं

कल जहाँ तक थी गई दीवार अब भी है वहीं

क्या किया है तू ने दिन-भर में ज़रा मुझ को बता

यूँ तकब्बुर में वो आ कर जाएज़ा लेने लगा

दिल में वो मज़दूर फिर कहने लगा उफ़ रे ग़ज़ब

जो भी इस दुनिया में हैं फ़िरऔन हैं वो सब के सब

जिस का जिस पर बस चले पामाल करता है उसे

ख़ुद अगर ख़ुश-हाल है बद-हाल करता है उसे

१०

क्या कहूँ सरमाया-दारों के सितम की दास्ताँ

दीदा-ए-मज़दूर है मज़दूर से भी ख़ूँ-फिशाँ

जिस की लाठी उस की भैंस इस मिस्ल को सादिक़ समझ

ये समझ कर इस ख़ुदा-ए-पाक को राज़िक़ समझ

 

Click here for background and on any passage for word meanings and explanatory discussion. baalmukund arsh malsiyani (1908-1979), son of josh malsiyaani, both renowned shu’ara from malsiyaan, punjab. They moved to dehli in the 1930s. arsh malsiyani was assistant editor of Govt of India urdu publication ‘aaj kal’ under josh malihabadi and took over as editor after josh left for pakistan.
1
june ki garmi kaRakti dhuup loo chalti hui
har ghaRi mazdoor ke sar se qazaa1 Talti hui
sar pe gaare2 ki kaRhaaii aur divaar-e-buland
haaNptaa vo chaRh rahaa hai le ke himmat ki kamand3    
1.death 2.plaster mix 3.used here to mean “waist-band”
The heat of June, blazing sun, hot winds blowing. It is as if the worker escapes death every moment. Carrying a load in the iron basket on his head, up to the high wall, panting, calling up all his courage/strength.

2
paaR1 par pahuNchaa to ek gaali suni me’maar2 se
ji meN aayaa sar ko Takraa de usi divaar se
haaye us mazloom3 ki majbooriyaaN4 naa-chaariyaaN5
jaan ka aazaar6 haiN iflaas7 ki bimaariyaaN  
1.scaffolding 2.builder, mason 3.oppressed 4.helplessness 5.vulnerability 6.illness, pain 7.penury
He reached the top of the scaffolding only to have the mason scold him. He felt like striking his head against the wall. Alas, the helplessness and vulnerability of the oppressed. The disease of penury is life-sapping.

3
dil meN kahta hai ki ye me’maar1 bhi mazdoor hai
phir yahi jaan-e-haziN2 kyuN is qadar3 maqhoor4 hai
us ki ujrat5 mujh se dugni hai magar kam hai sha’oor6
tamkanat7 kis baat par kis chiiz par itnaa Ghuroor    
1.mason 2.sad soul 3.so much 4.cursed 5.wages 6.awareness, sensitivity 7.dignity, used here to mean assertiveness
After all this mason too is a worker. Then why is this sorrowful soul behaving in such a cursed manner. His wages may be twice mine, but he lacks sensitivity. Why then, this false pride this assertiveness.

4
maiN agar naadaar1 huN ye bhi nahiN sarmaaya-daar2
bhuut vo hai kis baRaaii ka jo us par hai savaar
iiNT gaaraa maiN na duN us ko to ye kis kaam ka
asl meN me’maar maiN huN ye faqat hai naam ka   
1.poor 2.rich
If I am poor, he is not very rich either. What demon of pride is it that has taken of hold of him. If I don’t give him bricks and mortar, what can he accomplish. In reality I am the builder and he gets all the credit.

5
meri himmat1 kah rahiN haiN kaaKh-e-divaan-e-buland2
aah is par bhi maiN duniya meN huN itna mustamand3
lag gaya phir kaam meN ye soch kar vo bad-nasib4
aye Khuda duniya meN itna bhi na ho koi Gharib  
1.courage, used here as persistence 2.high/imposing mansion hall 3.needy, poor 4.unfortunate
These high imposing halls of the mansion declare my persistence. Still, I remain so needy/poor. The unfortunate worker then returned to his work praying, O, god, may no one in this world be so poor.

6
din Dhalaa jis vaqt maalik bhi makaaN kaa aa gaya
ek sukoot-e-marg1 sa divaar-o-dar par chhaa gaya
kaaNptaa rahta hai har mazdoor jis ke naam se
sab isi dhun meN the vo Khush ho hamaare kaam se  
1.deathly silence
As the day waned, the owner showed up. A deathly silence prevailed over the whole structure. Workers tremble at the mention of his name, engrossed with the thought that he be happy with their work.

7
us ki peshaani pe laikin bal zaraa aane lage
phan uThaa kar tamkanat1 ke saaNp lahraane lage
sab se pahle us ne gaali di usi me’maar2 ko
apni milkiyyat3 jo samjha tha har ek divaar ko  
1.used here to mean anger 2.mason 3.property
But his brow wrikled as if serpents of anger were raising their fangs (furrows on the brow are likened to coiled snakes/serpents). Right away he scolded the same mason who had been acting as if the building belonged to him.

8
josh-e-naKhvat1 se kahaa us ne ki ai paaji la’iiN2
kal jahaaN tak thi gaii divaar ab bhi hai vahiN
kya kiyaa hai tu ne din-bhar meN zara mujh ko bataa
yuN takabbur3 meN vo aa kar jaa’eza4 lene lagaa  
1.fervour of pride 2.cursed 3.hubris 4.examine, inspect
With pride and anger he said, O, cursed fool, the wall is still only as tall as it was yesterday. Show me what you have been doing all day long. And thus, with hubris, he inspected the work.

9
dil meN vo mazdoor phir kahne laga uf re Ghazab
jo bhi is duniya meN haiN fir’aun1 haiN vo sab ke sab
jis ka jis par bas2 chale paamaal3 karta hai use
Khud agar Khush-haal hai bad-haal karta hai use   
1.Pharaoh, oppressor 2.control 3.trample
And the worker could not but think, What oppression, everyone here is an oppressor, whoever has control over another, tramples him. If he is well off, he makes sure that the other comes off worse.

10
kya kahuN sarmaaya-daaroN1 ke sitam2 ki daastaaN
dida-e-mazdoor hai mazdoor se bhi KhooN-fishaaN3
jis ki laaThi us ki bhaiNs is misl4 ko saadiq5 samajh
ye samajh kar is Khudaa-e-paak ko raaziq6 samajh  
1.capitalist 2.cruelty 3.blood-shot 4.saying 5.true 6.giver of sustenance
How can I relate the story of the cruelty of the capitalist. Even the eye of one worker (the mason) is blood shot (in anger) at another. This saying is true, “power corrupts”. The last misra can mean … everyone abuses their power but only god gives sustenance or it can mean that just like everyone else, god also abuses his power of sustenance.

baalmukund arsh malsiyaani (1908-1979), son of josh malsiyani, both renowned shu’ara from malsiyaan, punjab.  They moved to dehli in the 1930s.  arsh malsiyani was assistant editor of Govt of India urdu publication ‘aaj kal’ under josh malihabadi and took over as editor after josh left for pakistan.
1
june ki garmi kaRakti dhuup loo chalti hui
har ghaRi mazdoor ke sar se qazaa1 Talti hui
sar pe gaare2 ki kaRhaaii aur divaar-e-buland
haaNptaa vo chaRh rahaa hai le ke himmat ki kamand3

1.death 2.plaster mix 3.used here to mean “waist-band”

The heat of June, blazing sun, hot winds blowing.  It is as if the worker escapes death every moment.  Carrying a load in the iron basket on his head, up to the high wall, panting, calling up all his courage/strength.
2
paaR1 par pahuNchaa to ek gaali suni me’maar2 se
ji meN aayaa sar ko Takraa de usi divaar se
haaye us mazloom3 ki majbooriyaaN4 naa-chaariyaaN5
jaan ka aazaar6 haiN iflaas7 ki bimaariyaaN

1.scaffolding 2.builder, mason 3.oppressed 4.helplessness 5.vulnerability 6.illness, pain 7.penury

He reached the top of the scaffolding only to have the mason scold him.  He felt like striking his head against the wall.  Alas, the helplessness and vulnerability of the oppressed.  The disease of penury is life-sapping.
3
dil meN kahta hai ki ye me’maar1 bhi mazdoor hai
phir yahi jaan-e-haziN2 kyuN is qadar3 maqhoor4 hai
us ki ujrat5 mujh se dugni hai magar kam hai sha’oor6
tamkanat7 kis baat par kis chiiz par itnaa Ghuroor

1.mason 2.sad soul 3.so much 4.cursed 5.wages 6.awareness, sensitivity 7.dignity, used here to mean assertiveness

After all this mason too is a worker.  Then why is this sorrowful soul behaving in such a cursed manner.  His wages may be twice mine, but he lacks sensitivity.  Why then, this false pride this assertiveness.
4
maiN agar naadaar1 huN ye bhi nahiN sarmaaya-daar2
bhuut vo hai kis baRaaii ka jo us par hai savaar
iiNT gaaraa maiN na duN us ko to ye kis kaam ka
asl meN me’maar maiN huN ye faqat hai naam ka

1.poor 2.rich

If I am poor, he is not very rich either.  What demon of pride is it that has taken of hold of him.  If I don’t give him bricks and mortar, what can he accomplish.  In reality I am the builder and he gets all the credit.
5
meri himmat1 kah rahiN haiN kaaKh-e-divaan-e-buland2
aah is par bhi maiN duniya meN huN itna mustamand3
lag gaya phir kaam meN ye soch kar vo bad-nasib4
aye Khuda duniya meN itna bhi na ho koi Gharib

1.courage, used here as persistence 2.high/imposing mansion hall 3.needy, poor 4.unfortunate

These high imposing halls of the mansion declare my persistence.  Still, I remain so needy/poor.  The unfortunate worker then returned to his work praying, O, god, may no one in this world be so poor.
6
din Dhalaa jis vaqt maalik bhi makaaN kaa aa gaya
ek sukoot-e-marg1 sa divaar-o-dar par chhaa gaya
kaaNptaa rahta hai har mazdoor jis ke naam se
sab isi dhun meN the vo Khush ho hamaare kaam se

1.deathly silence

As the day waned, the owner showed up.  A deathly silence prevailed over the whole structure.  Workers tremble at the mention of his name, engrossed with the thought that he be happy with their work.
7
us ki peshaani pe laikin bal zaraa aane lage
phan uThaa kar tamkanat1 ke saaNp lahraane lage
sab se pahle us ne gaali di usi me’maar2 ko
apni milkiyyat3 jo samjha tha har ek divaar ko

1.used here to mean anger 2.mason 3.property

But his brow wrikled as if serpents of anger were raising their fangs (furrows on the brow are likened to coiled snakes/serpents).  Right away he scolded the same mason who had been acting as if the building belonged to him.
8
josh-e-naKhvat1 se kahaa us ne ki ai paaji la’iiN2
kal jahaaN tak thi gaii divaar ab bhi hai vahiN
kya kiyaa hai tu ne din-bhar meN zara mujh ko bataa
yuN takabbur3 meN vo aa kar jaa’eza4 lene lagaa

1.fervour of pride 2.cursed 3.hubris 4.examine, inspect

With pride and anger he said, O, cursed fool, the wall is still only as tall as it was yesterday.  Show me what you have been doing all day long.  And thus, with hubris, he inspected the work.
9
dil meN vo mazdoor phir kahne laga uf re Ghazab
jo bhi is duniya meN haiN fir’aun1 haiN vo sab ke sab
jis ka jis par bas2 chale paamaal3 karta hai use
Khud agar Khush-haal hai bad-haal karta hai use

1.Pharaoh, oppressor 2.control 3.trample

And the worker could not but think, What oppression, everyone here is an oppressor, whoever has control over another, tramples him.  If he is well off, he makes sure that the other comes off worse.
10
kya kahuN sarmaaya-daaroN1 ke sitam2 ki daastaaN
dida-e-mazdoor hai mazdoor se bhi KhooN-fishaaN3
jis ki laaThi us ki bhaiNs is misl4 ko saadiq5 samajh
ye samajh kar is Khudaa-e-paak ko raaziq6 samajh

1.capitalist 2.cruelty 3.blood-shot 4.saying 5.true 6.giver of sustenance

How can I relate the story of the cruelty of the capitalist.  Even the eye of one worker (the mason) is blood shot (in anger) at another.  This saying is true, “power corrupts”.  The last misra can mean … everyone abuses their power but only god gives sustenance or it can mean that just like everyone else, god also abuses his power of sustenance.

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