Ghulam Nabi Sajid
Research Officer (Balochi)
Balochistan Study Centre
University of Balochistan Quetta-Pakistan.
Wahid Bakhsh Buzdar
Assistant Professor (Balochi) NIPS
Quaid-i-Azam University Islamabad.
Dukhaan men rab na daasee ں میں رب نہ داثی ڈکھا
Doste ar ghaten roshe دوستے ار گھٹیں روشءِ
Chee ae she mengaan gon dasee. چی اے شے منیگاں گوں داثی
(Lohar Kalu:Feb, 12, 2010)
(May Allah keep safe my beloved from all worries and if her days of life even come short, add my remaining days of my life to her life). This study will be focused on the importance of classical Balochi poetry in general and usage of Balochi Dehee in special. Folklorists are agreed that the folk and classical poetry is the foundation of expression. Although Dehee is not some epic poetry but there are so many characteristics of epic in Dehee as well. Dehee can tell long tales and stories relating the early past of Baloch people. In this study some Dehees of ancient age will be included with English translation, telling the migration rote and different war events of Baloch migration from Halab to Seestan.
Dahee and Zaheerook (زہیروک ﴿are very near to each other. Same as Zeerook, Dehee also expresses the feeling of lovers whom are very far away from their beloveds.
Some time there is sigh and moaning of lovers when wishing to see one glance of their beloveds.
Burzen Kandhee shall thu de Dhahaa se
ں میں رب نہ داثی ڈکھا
Men nazaan logha zurthu oodhar dase
منی ناذاں لوغا زُڑتھو اوڈھر داثے .
The high mountain may you fell down
You are a barrier between me and my beloved’s home.
Dehee is not only the poetry of love songs but there are prays for heavy rains in drought and famine. Dahee plays some time the role of social codes by tautening, the member of that society to act on the rules established by the society. Dahee reminds that people which are no more with us and also addresses the death angle in very hatred way on killing of some very near and respected persons.
Arzeel thu khudaan panda se ارزیل تھو کھنڈاں پنداثے
Zee se men nazzan زیثے منی ناذاں
Shall joaa aen roshaan mah ginda se.شل جوایں روشاں مہ گنداثے
O death angle may you beg from door to door
You have snatched my beloved
May you never see good days.
About the general introduction of Dehi, Muhammad Sardar Khan Baloch says,
“The Caravan song Dehi to the nomads was their favourite muse and in their estimation, the first form of singing. The Balochies of the classical age used as their principal instrument the square tambourine “dap” in Arabic (daff), the reed pipe “Nar” and Saroz or Sarundaw.
The Dehi are the choicest productions of the common mind. Some of the ballads in the form of Dehi show all that is best in nomad vein, but less admirable in the high and cultured society of the Balochs. The Dehies are a rough and ready expression of romance expressed by the rough and rude mind of the nomad folk. Many of these songs and ballads were composed in the vulgar dialect and without regard or heed to the rules of classical prosody, and none of the authors of folksongs endeavored to raise the so called Dehis to literary rank. We seldom find in this form of poetry, any reference to the beauties of nature, but a faint feeling that sometimes anticipates the attitude of medieval chivalry.
The dehies are mainly composed by minstrels, the Loris who occupy a low place in the social scale. The Lories are the gypsies of Balochistan and are found throughout the length and breadth of the country. They are handicrafts men, rather the mechanics of the Balochs, for they make all the instruments and implements needed for agricultural and domestic purpose. Moreover, the Loris are the musicians and composers of musical songs and tunes. Their women function as midwives, and sing ballads and other songs at the time of marriage ceremonies and celebrations on the birth of a male child.
We shall quote here the true picture of their life and code of conduct by their own words.
“Wanderers we were born.
Wanderers we live and
Wanderers we shall die,
When our bellies are stocked,
We pray, when bellies are empty,
We cheat, for are we.
Not the rightful sharers in
The food and the drink of you all,
No birth place or home or burying ground is Ours
Our birth is in the jungle
And the desert
The desert and the jungle are our home and our grave.”
The dehi, form of song prevalent in the Baloch society is perhaps, the outcome of the laxity of life introduced by the levity and luxury of the western culture, planted and propagated by the British rule over Balochistan”. (M.S.K.Baloch:1984:472) As it is agreed that Dahee is a kind folk poetry so before going onward the folk poetry need to be discussed.
The poetry of old time when the authorship in unknown and had been preserved and adapted through oral tradition. Folk songs usually have an easily remembered melody and a simple poetic form. A song that is traditionally sung by the common people of a region and forms of their culture. Dr. Abdul Haq Mehr says, “The folk music and literature is a common effort of the people. (Buzdar Wahid:)
Muhammad Sardar Khan says, “Folklore is the body of the traditions, customs, beliefs, tales and songs that are transmitted from tribe to tribe, territory to territory and hut to hut by word of mouth from one generation of a society to the next. On the other hand, we should also note that many tales and traditions are actually the product of a single man singularly famous in his time to frame and propagate tales and traditions. The Baloch race is among those historic nations whose history and origins go back thousands of years, and, therefore the search for identity is not difficult and tradition is the main ingredient in any identification. The Baloch people are a traditional race and tradition in most countries is based to a great extent in folklore, history and geography. By tradition, folklore is the traditional knowledge of the folk. Literally “folk” are small groups of families living in isolation, and live and thrive in their isolated world, taking pride in their limited usages, customs, opinions and information. It is therefore, that folklore material has no known and definite author or source. The wisdom, imagination, spirit and superstition of the Balochis, more or less can be judged in the folklore songs and traditions. Variations, progress evolution are not among the laws that a nomadic people readily obeys.
Deprived of all the comforts and benefits of civilization the nomadic Baloch is not immune to the invasion of exotic ideas and aims. Though contented in tents of goat’s and camel’s hair, yet to his heart and mind, the occupations worthy of his blood are hospitality swordsmanship and romance. All other varieties of trade, skill, art and education are beneath his dignity. The monotony, simplicity and dryness of the mountain habitat are truly reflected in the nomad Baloch physical and mental makeup. Anatomically he is a firm from and figure of strong veins and fine chiseled bones. The hardihood of their profession and mountain life is fully displayed by his physique, displaying his fantastic forbearance, tenacity and temerity. A nomad Baloch is seldom able to raise himself to the state of a social being of the civilized man, but is always devoted to the common good and tradition of his tribe. Discipline and development are foreign to the ideals of his simple life. His daily prayer to the providence would be “O God, have mercy upon me, my family and the herd of sheep.” However, horrible as an enemy he may be, yet with in the laws of friendship, he is a most sincere, reliable and a generous friend. In the ballads and folksong, we note on the one hand, the nomad Baloch’ courage, resolution, contempt of death and fear of dishonor, his tender regard and affection for the men of his own flesh and blood, on the other hand, his relentless temper, his heedless ferocity and traitorous cruelty towards his foe. In fact, the folksongs and ballads are the mirror of the mind and occupation of the common folk. (S.K.Baloch:1984:470)
1. A song belonging to the folk music of a people or area, often existing in several versions or with regional variations.
2. A song composed in the style of traditional folk music.
The most prominent categories are the love‐song, but the term also covers the social values and norms as well. Generally it is believed that folk is passing the cultural information on from one generation to the next by storytellers. The forms of oral tradition include classical poetry (often chanted or sung), folktales, and classical poetry, as well as magical spells, religious instruction, and recollections of the past.
Music and rhyme commonly serve as both entertainment and aids to memory. Epic poems concerning the destiny of a society or summarizing its myths often begin as oral tradition and are later written down. In oral cultures, oral tradition is the only means of communicating knowledge. The prevalence of radio, television, and newspapers in Western culture has led to the decline of oral tradition, but in the east especially in eastern Balochistan (Sulemani Baloch) it survives among old people and some minority groups as well as among children, whose games, counting rhymes, and songs are transmitted orally from generation to generation.
Same is with Dehee people do remember old Dehees and their generating factor as well. In case of Dehee there are two different kind of end rhyme. In very classical Dehee there are three lines in one complete Dehee. The end rhyme of first line will necessarily match with the end rhyme of third line.
1. Dodo banaani , ینانب وڈوڈ
Bilaan deh Karanki بلاں دہ کرانکی
Ashen men lal wataani استیں میں لال وطنانی
2. Tharaa sokha saaeen kaan تھرا سوکھا ساءیں کھاں
laal thai kahnen khulqaan لال تھی کہنیں خُلقاں
Roohrhi men wallar daaeen kaan روحڑی میں ولر داءیں کھاں
Roshaa manaan raa nen galwaari روشا مناں را نیں گالواری
thu wasi babaa bache تو وثی بابا بچھءِ Begaa gudaa sogo kaan daari یگھا گُڈا سوگوہ کن داری
(Shahir Saed Khan:Feb,21, 2010)
Mula men horaan guaaren nee, مولا منی ہوراں گوارینی
wasee dehrhee, وسیث ڈہڑی
Naazaan men guarkaan chaaren nee. ناذاں منی گورکھاں چارینی
Naazaan thu der kane kaa aey, نازاں تھو دیر کھنے کھاءے
Go hame baazen deraa گوں ہمے بازین دیراں
Roshe laal aekau sar kaa aey روشے لال ایکھو سر کھاءے
Dehee As Folklorist
As the Dehee is poetry of singing and mainly it is composed by shepherds on heights of mountains or by lories or young people in wedding ceremonies so the length and meter of the stanza is given keen attention, so that the rhyme may be same and beautiful.
Some time the first line is constructed only to create a rhyme and has no meaning and concern with the body and message of main Dehee. As,
Do do banaanee ینانب وڈ وڈ
Belaan de karaankee بلاں دہ کرانکی
Atseen men lal watanaanee استیں مین لال وطنانی
Allah Bakhsh Buzdar a well-known Baloch poet says about the rhyme of Dehee, “If someone considers Dehee as beginning of Balochi poetry, to me it is not wrong. I have never felt so enthusiasm and excitement by hearing any poetry, which real pleasure gives the Dehee. I am poet (if I am) of Poem and I also wrote some Dehee to express my inner feelings”. As,
Go lakh murazaan man thi logha kaatkaan
گو لکھ مُراذاں تھی لوغا کھاتکاں
Gandaan Dhange mare dardaan walar wartaan
گنداں ڈنگے ماری درداں ولرواڑتھاں
I thought throughout a long night of winter about my sorrow and worries at last came to your home with countless hopes but there the enemies has bitten me like snake and pain kept moving in my heart.
The real beauty of Dehee is its shortness. The Dahee covers all those ideas in very short (two or three lines) which can only be expressed in a long poem (Nazam/dastanag). Dehee is unique form poetry. Its form, its rhyme, its calculated meter, its depth and its musical sweetness are different then the other forms of poetry” (Buzdar: 2010)
Symbol: in general terms, anything that stands for something else. Obvious examples are flags, which symbolize a nation; the cross is a symbol for Christianity; Uncle Sam a symbol for the United States. In literature, a symbol is expected to have significance. Keats starts his ode with a real nightingale, but quickly it becomes a symbol, standing for a life of pure, unmixed joy; then before the end of the poem it becomes only a bird again.
In Balochi Dehee the symbol is used to express the feeling of poet and the situation of that age. As,
Dahaan Maskeenee khilaan, داہاں مسکینی کھلاں
Lal thi monjaan choshaan, لال تھی مونجھاں چوشاں
Chuke chon maas merree chilaan چکے چو ماث مری چلاں
(I do cry like an orphan or a men without any relation in journey of desert, O my beloved I am so grieved in your absence as the baby who’s mother had died within early forty days of his/her birth).
The miserable condition and difficulties of some orphan baby especially in early childhood is symbol of grieve ness to the poet.
There are so many symbols used in Balochi Dehee, as for the beauty of beloved, moon, zuhraa, flowers, light of morning, rain in desert, flowers, deer’s eyes hoors/fairies of heaven and so many other things.
There is great love for human being in Dehee and folk poetry.
Manaan dosten makhlook aeshaan pedaash Rabe.
مناں دوستیں مخلوق ایشاں پیدایش ربء
Same Sakhi Sultan Bahoo a ever popular saint of Saraaiki literature says.
“kujh bughz di reet wich nai melda کُج بغض دی ریت وچ نیں ملدا
O. haar te jeet wich nai meldaاو ہار تہ جیت وچ نین ملدا
Makhlooq-e- khuda naal peyar te kar مخلوق اے خدا نال پیار تہ کر
Rabb sirf maseet wich nai melda.رب صرف مسیت وچ نین ملدا
(You cannot find the divine content in enmity and hatred and nor in winning or losing from any opponent Please do love the people of God as the God is not only be traced or found in mosques)
Dahee is the most classical term of Balochi poetry. It is important and impressive form of poetry among Baloch of Eastern Balochistan. Dahee is the shortest way of impression which can convey its message in very impressive way and mostly in two lines or verse. In Dehee poetic form tells the historical events with true references can be narrated. Mostly, Dahee is the folk poetic form composed by the women folk but man has also composes dahees. Like all other poetic.forms Dahee is also mourning of lovers. Dahee is a famous Balochi poetic form which depects the social raelities of the society.
1. Baloch Muhammad Sardar Khan, Literary history of the Balochis 1984, Balochi Academy Quetta,
2. Buzdar Allah Bakhsh, personal interview on Feb 21, 2010 at Tounsa Shareef Buzdar, Wahid Bakhsh, Dehee e Darosham, Balochi Academy.
3. Shahir Saed Khan, personal interview Feb,21, 2010 at Tounsa Shareef.
4. .Lohar Kalo, personal interview on Feb, 12, 2010 Koh e Suleman, Musakhail.
PUBLISHED BY: BI-ANNUAL RESEARCH JOURNAL “BALOCHISTAN REVIEW” ISSN 1810-2174”,
BALOCHISTAN STUDY CENTRE, UOB, QUETTA (PAK) Vol. XXIII No. 2, 2010