It Takes A Life

M. Shahid Alam  Notre Dame Review  Winter-Spring 2013

آہ کو چاہیے اک عمر اثر ہوتے تک
کون جیتا ہے تری زلف کے سر ہوتے تک

It takes a life for a sigh to sway hearts.
My last sigh will be my last breath.

The soul’s sea journey is perilous. How
Does a drop ever make it to a pearl?

So great is the distance between us,
I will be dust when she hears from me.

In a flash, the sun takes out the dew.
I too will go when he asks for me.

Life is over before you even know it.
We are in time like sparks in the night.

Ghalib, only death abolishes life’s pain.
Silently, a candle burns until its last breath.