Table of contents
Poem / Human Rights

When I See Spring in Your Eyes/yeli bU’ vuċh canen Ạċhen mnz nō bhar

A poet-anthropologist from Indian-occupied Kashmir speaks of hope as inherited through memories of resilience in the past and present.
A photograph taken from under a large building’s awning looks out to show a fountain with green and red tress lining either side. The building’s stone pillars line the foreground.

Shalimar Bagh, an exquisite garden in the Kashmir Valley, features the beauty of chinar trees.

Niladri Sikder/Getty Images

“When I See Spring in Your Eyes” is part of the collection Indigenizing What It Means to Be Human. Read the introduction to the collection here.

When I See Spring in Your Eyes (English) - Listen

When I See Spring in Your Eyes

The alley must be wondering why it’s so soothing and calm
The reason being that I see spring in your eyes
Ohh! You wandering child, pray in the helm of god
For the sake of this unmourning spring to come
In the hands of green, red chinar blooms of life
They loot away for what they find is peaceful
They are the barbarians of their own
They are never the ones followed by the civilized

Ohh! You wandering child, when your ears feel the sound of spring
Turn around your face and look for the destiny of your tied hands
The cuffed hands that were never untied from that time of rule
The new exasperated sound will wave and shake your body
But you never move along with those shaky, clutchy hands
When they seek you lend them your soul, full of liveliness
As they cannot wither the vibes of an eternal soul
They can just be the oppressors of external being

Ohh! You wandering child, feel like an arrowed bow of a shady chinar
Whose echoing falling leaves chant yours and mine every linked soul
Let the genre of music be changed for you and me
Let the chasm of spring and the chants of water soothe our mind
Let the heaven speak of its own cloudy whitened valor
And let it roar like a melody of revolution
Then, ohh, you wandering child! I can see spring in your eyes
Those cold gray eyes of winter changed to the priceless charm of spring

A close-up image shows purple flowers with green stems in a sunny field.

Toiba Naseema

yeli bU’ vuċh canen Ạċhen mnz nō bhar (Kashmiri) - Listen

yeli bU’ vuċh canen Ạċhen mnz nō bhar

Translated by Kashmiri poet Abdul Wahab Akash

kōcU’ nae hinz amn ō āshtī kya ċhu bĀ’s ċhei xbr
yeli vuċhan ċhẠs ĀvdrU’ cshmn cani nae mnz nō bhar

ċhuk zhU’ shur mōSūm bdunya āmtn kya be qSūr
mani cōnue athU’ zU’ thod tul mng xudays rut bhar

pur sbz kuni, kuni sỌrux vuċh būni hĀnz mĀzh zindgi
āv bxshan mot skūnah, aōs shōban gul ‘zar

vHshts mnz qĀd spdith ċhẠs vlyut aōnd pok kĀrith
rĀvmĀzh vth gĀzhh nU’ āsny sĀlmn kyuth akha veqar

nZrnae tl cani ath āvarU’ gī ċhe zhīnU’ vn
panU’ phuṛĀvith zhU’ travkha, kanh, znjīrn ċha shumar

timU’ znjīre yemU’ hazhen myanen kĀrith thavan ċhuk
pĀdU’ krnue anqlabah, khōlU’hkha yemU’ jĀny yar

ċhe vSīHt yuthnU’ kmzōrī zhU’ havkha jani jan
kr skhaĀr cĀnis tlashs pesh krU’ dilkue shhar

āshU’ mĀzh ċhẠs teli ċhu kyah ğm, vĀnji zhli hem hōl az
sath cōnue yeli me āsem, mnz athn sỌe zvlufqar

mstqil āvaz myĀnī kr dabith heki yus zuvan
dōrU’ navan zindgi ċhẠm, mHvrs peṭh ċhẠs svar

zindgi hĀndy dōh ċh kĀzh tam, yemU’ ċh lagny mqSda
āsi yod suti, āsi ma yeti yōr bnU’ vny shandar

pnU’ brg zhripop krn valen andr hījan tulan
sỌe Sinf ath prani mvseqī andr bni srvU’kar

dilkshī azkl bhars gĀzhh bniny dilkue skūn
āsmans khaĀzh sfedī, obrU’ lĀhrv heōt qrar

xvab heth āvarU’ shur hueō, ċhẠs vuċhan pur xvar vth
kr dfn, poz yer zhU’ ti nvy xvab pans shhr yar

kyah nU’ kyah ‘nSr vjūdky thĀvims kĀry thn bhm
TĀlibi mvla bU’ ċhU’s, sjds andr prvrdigar

Toiba Naseema is from Indian-occupied Kashmir. She is a poet-anthropologist with graduate degrees in anthropology and mass communication from the University of Kashmir. Previously, Naseema was an editor at the Danish Siddiqui Foundation and also was engaged as an international youth adviser with Wellcome Trust, U.K., in building up a mental health databank.


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