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Keh Mukarnis
The Say-and-Deny Riddles of Khusro

Keh (say) Mukarni (denial) is an interesting genre of riddles played between two young women, where one of them describes something in a way that it is mistaken by the other girl as her beloved, and finally turns out to be something completely different.

Lipat lipat ke...

Lipat lipat kay wa-kay soyee,
Chhaati say chhaati lagakay royee,
Daant say daant bajay to taada.
Aye sakhi saajan? Na sakhi jaada!

(Cuddled up in his arms she slept,
Bosoms pressed against each other, she sobbed,
When the teeth started clattering, she saw.
Was it the beloved? No my dear.Winter!)

Oonchi ataari palang bichhayo,
Main soyi meray sir par aayo;
Khul gayin ankhiyan bhayi anand,
Aye sakhi saajan? Na sakhi Chand!

(Had my bed on the roof top,
and was off to sleep, when he came;
Could not sleep any further, it was such a pleasure.
Was it the beloved? No dear, it was moon!)

Woh aaye tab shadi......

Woh aaye tab shaadi hovay,
Us bin dooja aur na koye;
Meethay laagen wa ke bol.
Aye sakhi saajan? Na sakhi dhol!

One can't get married without it,
There is no one like him/it;
And he/it sounds so sweet.
Is it the beloved? No dear, the drum (for singing).

Aap hilay aur moye hilaaye, Wa ka hilna moye mun bhaye;
Hil hil kay woh huva nasankha. Aye sakhi saajan? Na sakhi pankha!

It shakes itself, and shakes me too, The shaking really pleases me;
It has become so frail by continuosly shaking. Is it the beloved? No dear, a fan!

Sagri rain chhatiyan....

Sagri raen chhatiyan par raakha,
Roop rang sab wa ka chaakha;
Bhor bhaee jab diya utaar.
Aye sakhi saajan? Na sakhi haar.

(Kept him on my bosom the entire night,
And tasted his various flavours thoroughly;
At dawn, I removed him.
You mean the beloved? No dear, necklace!

Padi thi main achaanak chadh aayo,
Jab utryo to paseeno aayo,
Sehem gayi nahin saki pukaar,
Aye sakhi saajan? Na sakhi, bukhaar!

I was lying when he suddenly came and climbed upon me,
I was perspiring, when he got off;
Terrified, I could not scream.
Was it the beloved? No dear, it was fever!

Sej padi...

Sej padi moray aankhon aaya,
Daal sej mohay majaa dikhaya,
Kis say kahun ab maja main apna.
Aye sakhi saajan? Na sakhi, Sapna!

I was lying on the bed, when he appeared in my eyes,
Oh, he let me have such fun on the bed,
Who should I tell my fun now.
Was it the beloved? No dear, a dream!

Bakhat bakhat moye wa ki aas, raat dina oo rahat mo paas;
Meray man ko sab karat hay kaam. Aye sakhi saajan? na sakhi, Ram!

(Each moment I long for him;
day and night he remains with me,
and does what my heart asks him to do.
Is it the beloved? No my dear, its Ram!)


If you know any other interesting Keh Mukarnis that are not featured here, Please share with us. Better still, try to make new ones.

Yousuf Saeed, 1998-2003 -- Contribute for our Cause