A poem about parents

Amitabh Bacchan

is probably the top hero of the Hindi film world. His father,

Harivansh Rai Bacchan

was a noted Hindi poet. Amitabh made his way against all odds in “Bollywood”, the Hindi film industry, and is today one of the most respected as well as the most sought-after actor.

He appears in this ad (so much of our culture seems to be in our ads today!). He enunciates, in his inimitable style a beautiful poem, written by Anurag Agnihotri, group creative director Ogilvy & Mather.

He makes the poem personal by references to his own parents, in real life.

Transliteration:
Maa Baap kahin nahi jaate,
Bas aise lagta hai ki wo chale gaye
Per wo jaate nahi,
Kabhi wo aapke hothon se muskurate hain
To kabhi wo aapke chalne ke andaz me jhalak jaate hain
Kabhi wo aapke bete ke naak me dikh jaate hain
Aur nahi to kabhi wo aapke bete ki beti ki aankhon me chhup jate hain
Kabhi wo aapko chaunka detein hain
Aap ki hi zuban se nikli kisi baat per, jo unhone boli thi
Wo un loriyon Kabhi wo aapko chaunka detein hain
Aapkme hain jo aapko yaad bhi nahi
Wo us hichkichahat me hain, jo aap jhoot bolte samay mehsoos kerte hain
Kabhi socha hai ki aap baithe baithe pair kyun hilatein hain
Gullu, Bablu, Pinki jo bhi aapka pyar ka naam hai usme
Kisi tasveer mein
Kisi taareq mein
Aapke andar ki aag mein
Gaur se dekhiye
Ek bahut lambi ladi hai bahut purani
Jiski aap ek kadi hain
Wo aap ke pahle the aur aap ke baad bhi rahenge
Kyunki maa baap kahin jaate nahi
Wo yahin rehte… hain sadiyon ke liye.

Rough translation:

Parents don’t go away…
It only feels as if they’ve gone.
They don’t go…
Sometimes they smile from your lips,
Sometimes they flash by in your gait.
They sometimes are seen in your child’s nose
Or they hide in your grandchild’s eyes.
Sometimes they startle you
With words issuing from your lips…that they had said.
They are those lullabies which you can’t even remember;
They are in the hesitation you feel when uttering a lie.
Have you ever thought why you keep swinging your feet while sitting?
They are in “Gullu”, “Bablu” “Pinki”…whatever your “pet” name is
In some photograph, in some special date..
In your inner fire.
Look carefully:
It’s an old, long story,
In which you are just a chapter.
They were there before you, and will be there after you, too:
Because parents don’t go away.
They stay right here…for ages.

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