SRF's translation comes, with his permission, from Mir Taqi Mir: Selected Ghazals and Other Poems, translated by Shamsur Rahman Faruqi. Cambridge: Harvard University Press, 2019. Murty Classical Library of India; Sheldon Pollock, General Editor. Ghazal 41, pp. 117-121.

S. R. Faruqi:

(1) He who stood firm against pain and grief is none but I.
He whose pallor was never relieved by a dash of color is none but I.

(2) The one on whom you always practice injustice and tyranny is none but I.
And the one who even then has the delusion that you'll be fair is none but I.

(3) I spoke ill of my rivals for your favor--so am I to blame?
Why should I be blamed? Come now, let it go. Is the worst among us none but I?

(4) He whose lamentation you hear every night in your street,
heartbroken, breast-seared, it's none but I.

(5) He who showed the world how to fashion long thorns into strings of pearls, and
whose soles in this desert are knotted with blisters, is none but I.

(6) I have no more strength to endure your tyrannies--so where's the fun if you come now?
Isn't there a whole teeming wofld out there? Go on with you--is the only lover fated to suffer your cruelty none but I?

(7) I was heart-stricken a whole world's worth here so I went away to the next.
He who was always totally lonely in your sorrow is none but I.

(8) Just take a look at her style here and judge fairly:
Is it she who is bad, dear friends, or is the bad fellow none but I?
(9) I just said, who is the person who took my heart away?
She spoke up at once: you there, come here! It is none but I.
(10) When I said, so it's you! She said,
let's see what you can do about it, fellow. Go on with you--it's none but I.

(11) The moment you heard my voice, you laughed in derision and thought: was it really this man?
Yes, he who wept last night and told all about himself was none but I.

(12) You've heard of a man called Mir who wanders homeless through the wide world,
all smeared with dust? Oh morning breeze, it's none but I.

(13) His head in his hand like a begging bowl beseeching her for just one look, face to face.
A beggar fed up with life, oh Mir, is none but I.



(inspired by SRF's translation)

(1) Fixed in grief and sorrow-- I'm the one.
Face with sickly pallor-- I'm the one.

(2) The one you always torment-- I'm the one.
Still, the one who trusts you-- I'm the one.

(3) Why blame me for abusing my rivals? Forget it!
As if they're all angelic-- but the sinner? I'm the one!

(4) The one whose wailing you hear in your street every night,
that charred-livered, burnt-hearted one-- I'm the one.

(5) The one who strung thorns into necklaces of pearls--
the blister-footed wanderer in this desert-- I'm the one.

(6) What's the pleasure in your coming? I can no longer bear your cruelty!
Go torment the rest of the world-- am I the only one?

(7) My spirit paused, then went all at once to another world.
Grief over you made me solitary-- I'm the one.

(8) Savor her style, friends, and do justice!
Is she the one at fault, or am I the one?
(9) I used to say, 'Who is it who has taken my heart?'
She suddenly spoke up: 'Come over here-- I'm the one!'
(10) When I said, 'You're the one!', she said,
'And let's see what you can do about it-- I'm the one!'

(11) When she heard it she laughed-- 'Just think, was it really you?'
The one who last night told you his tearful tale-- I'm the one.

(12) You've heard of Mir the lost world-wanderer,
all smeared with dust? Oh morning breeze-- I'm the one.

(13) The one who wanders with his head as a begging -bowl, seeking alms of sight,
Mir, that beggar fed up with his life-- I'm the one.


Zahra Sabri:

Zahra Sabri is a special guest translator for this site.

(1) The one who remained steadfast in pain and wretchedness in none but I
The one whose face’s pallor remained untouched by colour is none but I

(2) The one you are always cruel and unkind to is none but I
Even so, the one who has illusions of faithfulness from you is none but I

(3) If I criticised my rivals, then I have sinned
Why? Come now, let it go. Is the very worst among everyone none but I?

(4) The one whose anguished lament you hear in your lane each night 
That scorched-livered and burnt-breasted one is none but I

(5) He who demonstrated how a thorn can be turned into a string of pearls 
In this wilderness, that blister-footed one is none but I

(6) Where’s the pleasure in your arrival? That’s it, I’ve no more strength to endure your cruelty 
There’s a full world out there – be off now, is the only one left to be cruel to none but I?

(7) Having endured a whole world of heart-stopping anguish, I went off to the next world
None became so alone in your grief – none but I

(8) Contemplate her airs and graces for a bit, and then be fair
Is she the bad one, friends, or is it none but I?

(9) I was saying, “The one who took my heart – who is she?”
Suddenly she spoke up, “Here, this way – it is none but I!”

(10) Upon my saying, “So, you’re the one!”, she replied:
“And there’s a fat lot you can do about it – So there! It’s none but I”

(11) She heard me, and burst out laughing, “Just think! Was it really you?”
The one who poured out his heart, weeping, last night – yes, none but I

(12) You’ve heard of a Mir who wanders about the whole world, astray
That dust-encrusted one, oh morning breeze, none but I

(13) He who goes about begging, carrying his head as a begging bowl
“Mir”, that beggar who is sick of life is none but I