Saturday, March 20, 2010

A life woven around couplets and poems...

Today, I (re-)discovered a very very old diary, which I used to keep, when I was growing up - and in which I used to scribble down things - quotes, poems, couplets (शेर ) which I would come across (in books, magazines, conversations with friends/co-travellers of my life, songs, etc.), and which would help me to make sense of my own scattered life...

Reading those, I also realised the influence they had on my mid/late teenage mind, and - for good or bad - molded me as a person... at least, gave me a sense of meaning to those numerous things which happen to you when you are - with very inadequate capabilities- trying to find 'what the hell this is all about!'

Some, I still remember, but many of these personal roots I had forgotten till today I re-discovered them... some ways, this post is to acknowledge those many unknown poets/ शायरs who were with me when I was growing up

Here are some - maybe 2-10% - of those couplets (from amongst the hundreds, which are there in the diary)... in no particular order - each of them was a part of 'sense-making' :

उगां कि मुझ ग़रीब को, हयात का ये हुक्म है,
समझ हरेक राज़ को, मगर फरेब खाए जा।

मंजिल मुझे मिले ना मिले, इसका ग़म नहीं,
मंजिल कि जुस्तजू में मेरा कारवां तो है।

कुच्छ ग़म नहीं कि उनकी निगाह-ऐ करम नहीं,
हम भी अलग हैं, अपना मुकद्दर लिए हुए।

एक बार ही जीने कि सजा क्यूँ नहीं देते,
गर हर्फ़ गलत हूँ तो मिटा क्यूं नहीं देते।
मोती हो तो यूं पास ना रखने का सबब क्या,
पत्थर हूँ तो रस्ते से हटा क्यूं नहीं देते॥

जो सोचिये तो बहुत सिलसिले, बहुत रिश्ते,
जो देखिये तो जहाँ में, हर आदमी तनहा।

कहना चाहा तो मगर बात बनायीं ना गयी,
दर्द को शब्द में पोशाक पिन्हाई ना गयी।
और फिर ख़त्म हुयी ऐसे कहानी अपनी,
उनसे सुनते ना गयी, हमसे सुनाई ना गयी॥

गए हैं हम भी गुलिस्तान में बारहा लेकिन,
कभी बहार के पहले, कभी भार के बाद।

भटकने कि आदत सी कुच्छ पड़ गयी है,
कई बार मंजिल ने हमको पुकारा।

ऐ मौजे हवा! दे इनको भी,
दो-चार थपेड़े हलके से।
कुछ लोग अभी भी साहिल से,
तूफाँ का नज़ारा करते हैं॥

डूबने वाले ये किनारे पर क्यूँ-कर है,
मौत आई तो किनारे पे भी मर जाएगा।

मेरी ज़िन्दगी वोह मसल्सल सफ़र है,
कि मंजिल पे पहुंचे तो मंजिल बढ़ा दी।

ऐ आसमान, तेरे खुदा का नहीं है खौफ,
डरते हैं ऐ ज़मीन, तेरे आदमी से हम।

पुरानी और नयी रौशनी में फर्क इतना है,
उन्हें मंजिल नहीं मिलती, इन्हें साहिल नहीं मिलता।

हमें खबर है कि हम हैं, चिराग-ऐ-आखिरी-शब्,
हमारे बाद अँधेरा नहीं उजाला है।

अगर जाना है तुमको पार
बहुत है तिनके का आधार।
और मत सोचो मेरे मीत,
कहेगा क्या तट से संचार॥

रागिनी एक थी आंसू की मेरी उम्र मगर,
रही जहाँ भी वहां, रौशनी लुटा के रही।
और जब ख़त्म हुयी मेरी कहानी जग में,
आधी दीपक नें कही, आधी पतंगे नें कही॥

... and of course, that was also an age when it is natural to keep falling in love :)... so there were an equal number of romantic couplets too :0)... in some other posting later...

Tuesday, March 16, 2010

A tele-conversation which made my day... :0)

My bank and credit card company (both same) are very generous and gracious. They keep telling me what a 'jolly good fellow" I am to the banking industry in general and to them in particular....

...and so, I deserve to be rewarded for having an account with them.

Everyday send me a couple of SMSs - and call me up on phone - with magnanimous offers of un-solicited loans and/or low EMIs against my my meagre bills on the card...

Though I am grateful to them for making feel part of the debt-ridden "India Shining" story - but even though I have the option of ignoring the SMSs, their "offers" on phone sometimes do become a distraction.

So I was well-prepared today with a "counter-offer strategy" today when the call came. Here is a rough transcript of our conversation:

Caller: Sir, I am Amit calling on behalf of xxx cards. Am I talk to Mr Madhukar Shukla?

Me (M): Yes, what can I do for you

Amit: Sir, I am happy to inform you that we have identified you as one of our Preferred Customers, and would like to offer you...

Me: Oh, really? - thanks!.. er - can you please hold on for a minute.

And so I went around the house, stood on the balcony looking at nothing - timed my absence for 3 minutes, before I came back... The poor soul was still there.

Me: Oh, sorry for keeping you waiting... What did you say was your name?

Amit: Amit, Sir!

Me: Yes, Amit, you were saying...?

Amit: Sir, you are one of our "Preferred Customers", and have been paying your bills on time. So we are happy to offer you...

Me: Offer? Thanks, Amit... Btw, you have a nice and polite voice...

Amit: Thanks, sir.. As I was saying, we are happy to...

Me: How old are you, Amit?

Amit: Sir!!?

I could imagine him looking at the script on his screen with bewiilderment...

Me: Amit, you seem to be such a nice person. How old are you?

Amit: uh... er.. Sir?

Me: how old are you, Amit?

I was playing safe - knowing something how the BPOs work, I was sure that he can't abuse me and hang-up on me - the "preferred customer", ahem! :0) - his supervisor (who may be listening - or can listen to the tape) would have fire him!

Amit: Sir.... why? (and then broke into his script) I want to inform you that you are our preferred customer, and we would like to offer you...

Me: Amit, how old are you?

Amit: 25 yrs, sir!... As I was telling you, you are one of our preferred...

Me: Amit, are you married?

Amit: er, no, sir!...but I wanted to inform you that you...

Me: That's great, Amit - I guess, you must be getting a decent salary for making these calls?

...and who can say that s/he is getting peanuts for spamming other people's phones, when his company is listening to him/her...

Amit: yes sir, my company looks after me quite well [I admired him to be able to say something besides parroting from his screen] but as I was telling you...

Me: Oh, that's great!... Amit, why don't you get married? You are such a nice polite young man, and have bright future ahead of you. I have a nice girl I know, who would be just right you

Amit: ...[silence]

Me: Amit, I too have an offer! - I can get you married!... Please do send me your bio/cv

Amit: [l....o...n...g silence] Yes sir, Can I call you later sometime. We are happy to inform you...

Me: Sure, Amit - it was nice talking to you..

Disclaimer: the above conversation is imaginary - us, b-school profs are a serious lot, and we don't play such pranks on those who are toiling hard to increase India's GDP from the "service sector"

Dis-Disclaimer: it was one great fun of 5-min entertainment today - made my day!! :0)