Ten Years Later: Quatrains on War by Sahir Ludhianvi

UN Bombing - Baghdad

Marking the 10 year anniversary of the 2003 Invasion of Iraq


To prove one’s greatness

Is it necessary to shed blood?

To banish the darkness of the house

Is it necessary to set it ablaze?


Bartari ke saboot ki khaatir

KhooN bahaana hi kya zaroori hai?

Ghar ki taareekiyaaN miTaane ko

Ghar jalaana hi kya zaroori hai?

Iraqi - man vs. horse


War is the problem

Not the solution to any problem

All it will give is fire and blood today

Hunger and want tomorrow


Jang to khud hi ek masla hai

Jang kya mas’aloN ka hal degi?

Aag aur khoon aaj bakhshegi

Bhook aur ehtiyaaj kal degi


And so noble human

Better to let war simmer out

Better for you and I to light candles

In one another’s courtyards


Isliye ae shareef insaano

Jang taltee rahe to behtar hai

Aap aur ham sabhi ke aangan mein

Shamah jalti rahe to behtar hai.

From “Ae Shareef InshaanoN” (‘O Noble Humans’) by Sahir Ludhianvi, translated by Ali Husain Mir & Raza Mir, cited in “A Celebration of Progressive Urdu Poetry: Anthems of Resistance” (Roli Books, New Delhi: 2006), at p. 161, edited by Randeep Purewall

This entry was posted in Art.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s