afsos miir ve jo hone shahiid aa))e
phir kaam un kaa us kii talvaar tak nah pahu;Nchaa

1) alas, Mir-- those who came in order to be martyrs
2) then their work/desire/throat didn't arrive as far as her sword



S. R. Faruqi:

The word kaam means 'purpose', and also 'throat'. By having left the verse a little incomplete, he's created a new pleasure. An interpretation can also be that the people who come with the intention of giving up their lives-- to them this blessing is not vouchsafed.

If we recite it in a Sufistic style, then the meaning emerges that mystical-knowers receive whatever the Lord would give. Nothing comes of intentions and efforts, if there wouldn't be a glance of compassion from the Giver.

[See also {584,8}; {770,5}.]



This might be the third verse in a three-verse verse-set that begins with {96,7}; but it also might be an independent closing-verse that follows at two-verse verse-set. On the whole, I think it's more of an independent closing-verse; its relationship to its two predecessors is really not as close as theirs to each other.

Oh, the delightfulness of that kaam , with its triple meanings! For more on this, see {7,1}. All three senses are, needless to say, quite relevant here: that of 'work, purpose, task', that of 'erotic desire', and even that of 'throat'. Without it, the verse would be nothing.

But above all this is a mushairah-verse-- in fact really formally a 'misdirection' [iihaam], since the first line is broad and unspecific and the second line works perfectly well with the most common sense of kaam as 'work, project', and also with the secondary sense of 'erotic desire'. If the second line had ended with something like 'their project didn't arrive at completion', we'd be perfectly comfortable with that reading. It's only when (at the last possible moment, of course) we hit the word talvaar that a sudden shock of awareness reconfigures the whole verse in our minds. Suddenly, instead of an abstract sense of a task left unfinished, we are struck by the vivid image of a sword running through a throat-- or not, since the fate lamented in the verse is that of those aspiring lover/martyrs who are not vouchsafed this most happy fate. The grammar of the line presents them as thrusting their throats toward the sword, urgently, desperately-- but in vain.