galyo;N me;N ab talak to ma;zkuur hai hamaaraa
afsaanah-e mu;habbat mashhuur hai hamaaraa

1) in the streets, well, up until now there's talk/mention of us
2) our story of love is famous



S. R. Faruqi:

This verse is by way of introduction [baraa-e bait].



SRF includes 'opening-verses' like this one because of their formal role in the oral performance of the ghazal. They're like 'establishing shots' in films that introduce the viewing audience to the setting, atmosphere, etc. of the action to come. Opening-verses lay down the parameters that enable the mushairah audience to tell what's coming next. In terms of formal structure, they give complete information: the audience can tell with entire accuracy how much of each line from then on will be part of the rhyme, and how much will be part of the refrain. Of course they give perfect metrical information as well, but then any verse does that-- and usually even any single line (though it's not so uncommon for a single line to be readable in two similar but different meters).

Do such opening-verses provide any further information? Perhaps they give some hint of mood or atmosphere that might (or more often might not) be followed up in later verses. But then, to the (usually almost nonexistent) extent that this can be done, any regular verse does it just as well. If anything, any regular verse usually does it better. For the opening-verse's special formal structure (with the rhyming elements having to be incorporated twice) makes it harder to work with, and so less likely to convey subtleties. This very difficulty is why it's a flashy show of skill for the poet to include two opening-verses in a row (or even three) at the beginning of a ghazal.

A skilful and talented poet-- not to speak of truly great ones like Mir and Ghalib-- can often overcome the structural limitations of an opening-verse. But sometimes the poet doesn't do so (or doesn't bother to do so?). As in this case-- for this is one of the few opening-verses SRF has presented about which he's had absolutely nothing to say. Usually he'll say something like 'The opening-verse is by way of introduction-- but there are still one or two points in it'; then he'll go on to mention what charms the verse does have. But in a handful of cases like this one, he can't think of anything whatsoever to say.

Other opening-verses that SRF includes only 'by way of introduction', without adding a single word in their favor: {64,1}; {85,1}; {558,1}, 'among his weakest'; {760,1}; {932,1}; {1050,2}; {1076,1}; {1098,1}; {1256,1}; {1579,1}. For the whole four volumes of SSA, fewer than a dozen such pro forma verses is really not very many.

In the case of the present verse, I can't think of anything to say either.