Madhushala (Few Verses)

मधुशाला (कुछ छंद ) (Madhushala) - The Tavern - Harivansh Rai Bachchan 

'Madhushala' (The Tavern) is the most famous work of Harivansh Rai Bachchan. It is among the longest poems I have read. Through tavern, wine, drinker as analogy 'Bachchan' has bring out the complexity of life and highlighted hollowness of society, religion, philosophy and traditions. I have selected three of my favorite verse from this long poem to translate in hope you like it.

 मदिरालय जाने को घर से चलता है पीनेवला,
'किस पथ से जाऊँ?' असमंजस में है वह भोलाभाला,
अलग-अलग पथ बतलाते सब पर मैं यह बतलाता हूँ -
'राह पकड़ तू एक चला चल, पा जाएगा मधुशाला।'
Madiralya Jaane Ko Ghar Se Chalta Hai Peenewala,
'Kis Path Se Jaaon?' Asmanjas Mein Hai Wah Bhola Bhala,
Alag-Alag Path Batlate Sab Par Mein Yeh Batlata Hun - 
'Rah Pakad Tu Ek Chala Chal, Pa Jaega Madhushala .'

Drunkard leaves the home to go to tavern,
'Which way should I go?' in dilemma asks the perplexed one,
Different people tell differently but I give the solution,
'Pick a path and keep walking on it, you will find the tavern.'

धर्मग्रन्थ सब जला चुकी है, जिसके अंतर की ज्वाला,
मंदिर, मसजिद, गिरिजे, सब को तोड़ चुका जो मतवाला,
पंडित, मोमिन, पादिरयों के फंदों को जो काट चुका,
कर सकती है आज उसी का स्वागत मेरी मधुशाला।
Dharamgranth Sab Jala Chuki Hai,Jiske Andar Ki Jwala,
Mandir, Masjid, Girje Sab Tod Chuka Jo Matwala,
Pandit, Momin, Padriyon Ke Fandon Ko Jo Kaat Chuka,
Kar Sakti Hai Aaj Usi Ka Swagat Meri Madhushala.

All religious scriptures whose inner fire has burned,
Temple, Mosque, Churches who have destroyed each one,
the traps of Pandits, Maulvis, Priests who have broken,
only such person is welcome in my tavern

मुसलमान औ' हिन्दू है दो, एक, मगर, उनका प्याला,
एक, मगर, उनका मदिरालय, एक, मगर, उनकी हाला,
दोनों रहते एक न जब तक मस्जिद-मन्दिर में जाते,
बैर बढ़ाते मस्जिद-मन्दिर मेल कराती मधुशाला!
Musalman Aur Hindu Hain Do, Ek Magar Unka Pyala,
Ek Magar Unka Madiralya, Ek Magar Unki Hala,
Dono Rehte Ek Na Jab Tak Masjid-Mandir Mein Jaate,
Bair Badate Masjid-Mandir Mel Karati Madhushala!

Muslims and Hindu are two but their cup is one,
one is their tavern and their wine is one,
when they Mosque-Temple they don't remain one,
Mosque-Temple brings enmity, harmony gives the tavern.


  1. Madhushala is one of my favorite from Dr Harisvans Rai Bachchan and it offers a depth and sensitivity that struck a chord with hearts.

  2. So very meaningful. Madhusala is superior to the religious places in many ways.

  3. Such a meaningful post! I was not at all aware of this and its breathtaking indeed!

  4. Beautiful . It was enchanting to revisit this epic :)

  5. I am yet to read the whole 'Madhushala'. It's on my list.
    Glad that you have shared such wonderful verses.
    I loved the third stanza the most! So true!
    Happy Diwali, Cifar :)

  6. That is an extremely smart written article. I will be sure to bookmark it and return to learn extra of your useful information. Thank you for the post. I will certainly return.


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