Pashto Landay : A form of Afghan poetry
Pashto Landay Anonymous Pashto Couplets Landay are those national couplets in Pashto whose authors are unknown. They can, therefore, be called mirrors which reflect the sentiments and passions of every sensitive pashtoon man and woman. These couplets are sung and enjoyed among lofty mountains, verdant valleys, vast deserts and sylvan surroundings, in villages and towns, by the side of the cascading waterfall and the humble nomadic tent, on the shepherd’s flute and the orchard-keeper’s reed pipe, in short in every corner of the land of the Pashtoons. The oldsters sing them in memory of a youth which is no more; young men and maidens seek the intoxicating tumult of a passionate youth in their lines; for the lovelorn they are messengers of words sweet and divine; the swordsmen dance to their melody on the battlefield; and the weary traveler forgets the pangs of separation from home in their sweet words. These couplets, composed of plain, easily understood, yet fluent language, are totally free of the influence of foreign, languages. Although some pushto poems are based on Arabic prosody yet these couplets are not only unfettered by Arabic versification, they are based on a syllabic-prosody of their own in as much as the first line of the couplet has nine syllables and the second thirteen. Another outstanding quality of these couplets in that contrary to the general pattern of poetry in most (Landay) the woman address the man. This is so because compared to the male the sentiments of the female are more tender, her sorrow more profound and he voice more sweeter, and that is why the (Landay) are more moving in their effects, and the enjoyment is proportionately greatr than that found in conventional pushto poetry. Similarly every (Landay) couplet can be recited in different ways on different occasions. To be more explicit, a Landay couplet can be sung in different tunes and with different musical notes in combat and rejoicing, while traveling, whether inactive or dancing, in travail and happiness, in fact at all times and on all occasions.
ُExamples of Pashto landay.
پاس په كمر ولاړه ګله!
نصيب دچايي اوبه زه درخيژومه
O Flower that you grow on the mountain side;
The duty to water you belongs to me, but to whom would you belong?
زړه مي هلك دي راته ژاړي
چه رانه غواړي دپردي باغچوګلونه
My heart is like a child; it cries,
and demands flowers from a stranger’s garden.
ستا به د ګلو دوران تير شۍ
زما به پاته شۍ دزړه سوۍ داغونه
The blooming season of your beauty will pass;
But the scorched patches on my heart will always remain fresh.
په ګل ګلاب دي و ويشتمه
تر لاس دي جارشم دښمنانو وليدمه
You have thrown a rose at me;
blessed be thy hands, but malevolent eyes have noticed.
مخ دي ګلاب سترګي دي شمعي
نه پري پوهيږم چه بورا كه بتنګه شمه
Your face is a rose and your eyes are candles;
Faith! I am lost, should i become a butterfly or a moth?
زه دپسرلۍ تر ګل تازه وم
ستا په بيلتون كښي لكه پاڼه زيړه شوم
I used to be more fresh than spring blossoms, O Beloved!
But your separation has turned me yellow like an autumn leaf.
ستا په يوه تومت رنګ زيړشو
زه دتومت جامي په غاړه ګرزومه
Your cheeks have been paled with only one slander;
while I am clothed from head to foot with calumnies.
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