garmii-e ((ishq maan((a-e nushv-o-namaa hu))ii
mai;N vuh nihaal thaa kih ugaa aur jal gayaa

1) the heat of passion became a forbidder of growth and flourishing
2) I was {the kind of / that} plant that sprouted-- and burned up



nashv : 'Intoxication, drunkenness; exhilaration (from wine, &c.), hilarity'. (Platts p.1141)


numaa : 'Growing; increasing; rising; growth; increase; rise'. (Platts p.1153)


numaa : 'Showing, exhibiting, pointing out;—showing itself, appearing'. (Platts p.1153)


nushuu-o-namaa : 'Growth and increase'. (Steingass p.1404)


ugnaa : 'To grow, spring up, shoot, sprout, germinate; to be produced, to rise, bud; to begin, set in; to dawn: — ugte hii jal jaanaa , To be withered or blasted at its birth, to be nipped in the bud'. (Platts p.71)

S. R. Faruqi:

Ghalib has composed this theme in a very superior style:


Ghalib's style is mysterious and meditative. In the second line a subtle example [tam;siil] has been mentioned. Mir's verse is devoid of those qualities. But the dramatic style of the second line is fine. The image of burning up at the moment of sprouting is also fine.

Mir has also versified this image again in the first divan, in this way [{513,6}]:

mat kar zamiin-e dil me;N tu;xm-e umiid .zaa))a((
bo;Taa jo yaa;N ugaa hai so ugte hii jalaa hai

[don't waste, in the ground of the heart, the seed of hope
the shrub that has sprouted here-- at the moment of sprouting, it has burned up]

In the present verse, the point is that without warmth, the sprouting of plants is in vain. But if the heat is excessive, then the seed dies. The second thing is that if a new seedling withers from an excess of water, then they call it 'the plant's burning up' [jal jaanaa]. Thus the suggestion is that on the basis of the heat of passion, there was an abundance of tears; this abundance created the conditions for the death of the plant.

For detailed discussion of Ghalib's verse and the present verse, see shi((r ;Gair shi((r aur na;sr .



I don't see that the comparison with Ghalib's verse is all that close. While Ghalib's verse is brilliantly, provocatively metaphysical, Mir's verse appears to be founded on an idiom. Platts identifies the idiom as ugte hii jal jaanaa (see the definition above). Platts suggests an English counterpart idiom, 'nipped in the bud'. It's not exactly the same, since the English one describes the effects of an unseasonable frost on vulnerable young seedlings. But a line like 'I was the bud that sprang up-- and was nipped' would give something of the same idea. In both cases the audience would at once pleasurably think of the idiom, while (also pleasurably) recognizing that it was not (fully) present in the verse. In any case, it would certainly hover in the atmosphere.