Monday, 6 October 2008

Chandni Raatein: Those Moonlit Nights

I hope everyone celebrating Eid had a lovely one! I often listen to a very famous song by Noor Jehan when Eid is at our doorstep. I have decided to translate this famous song and add a clip of Noor Jehan singing it and also Naseebo Lal (she sings live). I think Naseebo is a little out of her depth on this one and Noor Jehan still wins this one but both are an interesting contrast.

The moon is so important to Muslim festivals but not to be misunderstood as something worshiped. In a sense the moon embodies so many mystical paths to God for even though human beings have 'conquered' this white globe we still look up to it and watch it illuminates our nights. And then for it to be sung by 'Noor Jehan' - 'The light of the worlds' is very apt. I probably would not have translated this had I not sent this clip to Professor Zayn Kassam who is professor of Islamic Studies at Pomona College in the States, so this ones dedicated to you:)

Chandeni raatein, Chandeni raatein
Moonlit nights, Oh the moonlit nights

Sab jug so’ay, Hum ja’gay
The whole world sleeps, I awake

Taron say karay baatein
Conversing with the stars

Chandeni raatein, Chandeni raatein
Moonlit nights, Oh the Moonlit nights

Tuktay tuktay tooti ja’ay aas piya na a’ay ray, tuktay tuktay
Gazing, broken is my anticipation for my beloved, he hasn’t returned, Gazing

Shaam sawaray dard anokhay usay jiya gubra’ay ray, shaam sawaray
Evenings and morning, unusual pains, they tremble my heart/soul, Evenings and mornings

Raato ney meri neend loot’li, dil kay chain choo’ra’ay
The nights have looted my sleep, stolen the peace of my heart

Dukya ankhay doond rahi hai wahi pyar ki gatay
Sorrowful eyes are searching for those times of love

Chandeni raatein, Chandeni raatein
Moonlit nights, Oh the Moonlit nights

Pichli raat mein hum uth uth kur chupkay chupkay ro’ay ray, pichli raat mein
Just the other night I awoke, quietly quietly weeping, just the other night

Suckh ki neend mein meet hamaray des pira’ay so’ay ray, Suckh ki neend mein
And in another land, sleeping in peace, my beloved, sleeping in peace

Dil ki darkanay tujhay pukaray, aja balum a’i baharay
My heart beat is calling you, come to me, even spring has arrived

Beth kay tanha’i mein kur lay dookh sookh ki do baatein
Let us sit in isolation and share some sorrows between us

Chandeni raatein, Chandeni raatein
Moonlit nights, oh the Moonlit nights

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