We all know that Meena Kumari was a brilliant actress but she was equally good in poetry.  Indian film critics regarded Meena Kumari as ‘historically incomparable’ actress of Hindi cinema. Meena Kumari made waves as an actor beyond compare in the 60s, Kumari got the author-backed roles and her male co-stars were said to be wary of starring opposite her. During a career spanning 33 years from her childhood to her death, she starred in around 92 films of variety of genres, many of which have achieved classic and cult status today such as Sahib Bibi Aur Ghulam, Pakeezah, Mere Apne, Aarti, Baiju Bawra, Parineeta, Dil Apna Aur Preet Parai, Foot Path, Char Dil Char Rahen, Daera, Azaad, Miss Mary, Sharada, Dil Ek Mandir, Kaajal, Chirag Kahan Roshni Kahan, Majhli Didi, Phool Aur Patthar, Bhabhi Ki Chudiyan, Yahudi, Halaku, Baadbaan and Kohinoor.

Kumari was also a playback singer, as a child artist till 1945, later as an actress and as a heroine in Duniya Ek Sarai, Piya Ghar Aaja, and Bichchade Balam.

Below are some of her poems recited by her and music was given by Khayyam.

Besides these recitations below are three famous poems of her-

Pakeezah

Siah naqab mein uska sandili chehra
Jaise ra’t ki tariki mein
Kisi khnakah ka
Khula aur raushan tak
Jahan mombat’tian jal rahi ho’n Khamosh
Bezaban mombat’tian
Woh sunahri jild wali kitab jo
Ghamgeen muhabbat ke muqad’das ash’ar se muntakhib ho
Ek pakeezah manzar
Siah naqab mein uska sandili chehra

The Virgin

Her moon-like face
Under the inky veil
Like the resplendent niche
In a shrine
Illumined with candles
Silent candles
Or
The golden, hardbound book
Containing the pure poetry
Of despondent love

A sacred sight
Her moon-like face
Encased
In a black veil.

***

Zindagi Yeh Hai

Subh se sha’m talak
Doosro’n ke liye kuch karna hai
Jisme’n khud apna koi naksh nahin
Rang us paikare-tasweer hi mein bharna hai
Zindagi kya hai, kabhi sochne lagta hai yeh zehan
Aur phir rooh pe cha jate hain
Dard ke saye, udasi ka dhuan, dukh ki ghata
Dil mein rah-rah ke khayal a’ta hai
Zindagi yeh hai to phir maut kise kahte hain?
Pyar ik khwab tha, is khwab ki ta’bir na pooch
Kya mili jurme-wafa ki hame’n ta’zir na pooch 

Comments