♪ Shiv Kumar Batalvi’s Loona
Loona is a masterpiece of modern Punjabi poetry. A verse-play, published in 1965, Loona is based on the legend of Puran Bhagat.
King of Sialkot marries a young girl Loona. She falls for his son (from 1st wife) Puran who is of her age. He declines her advances; she complains abt him; he’s punished (hands/feet amputated and thrown into a well). A guru rescues him; he gets well and becomes a Bhagat. Years later, Loona still childless comes to “the Bhagat”. The truth comes out; she admits her mistake; he forgives them and wishes a child, Rasalu.
That’s how the legend of Puran Bhagar has been told in Punjab for nearly two thousand years. But that’s not how Shiv tells is. For Shiv, it’s the legend of Loona: a girl of lower caste, married against her wishes, falls in love with a man of her age. So what? he asks and retells the legend and makes it about Loona, not the prince-turned-bhagat. A masterpiece at the age of 28! That’s called a great poet.
Below is the selections from Loona sung by Bhupinder & Mitali. Listen them or read the complete book here. It is something you simply cannot miss.