tirii gul-gasht kii ;xaa:tir banaa hai baa;G daa;Go;N se
par-e :taa))uus siinah hai tamaamii dast gul-dastah

1) for the sake of your rose-stroll, a garden has come into being through wounds
2) the breast is a peacock's wing, totally, the hand a bouquet/'rose-handful'



gul-gasht : 'Walking in a garden; an evening walk; recreation; a pleasant place for walking or recreation (esp. one blooming with roses and other flowers)'. (Platts p.911)


tamaamii : 'Perfection; completion; conclusion, end, termination; totality, the whole'. (Platts p.336)

S. R. Faruqi:

Abu Talib Kalim has composed this theme well [in Persian]:

'Kalim has made no scars except at the wound-edges,
With regard to your pleasure-stroll, I have arranged a garden.'

But the theme of declaring the breast to be a peacock's wing, Mir might perhaps have obtained from Qamar ul-Din Minnat:

aah ay ka;srat-e daa;G-e ;Gam-e ;xuubaa;N kih mudaam
.saf;hah-e siinah pur az jalvah-e :taa))uusii hai

[ah, oh abundance of wounds of grief for the lovely ones! for continually
the page of the breast is full of a peacock-like radiance]

Qamar ul-Din Minnat's first line is one of padding, and is based on verbosity. Though indeed, the beauty of the second line-- how can it be described!

Mir has made a claim in the first line, and in the second line he's given a proof for it. In the first line, the excellence of the grammar is that at first glance it seems that the prose of the line will be like this: baa;G terii gul-gasht kii ;xaa:tir daa;Go;N se banaa hai -- that is, since the beloved likes to see (lovers') wounds, the garden has adorned itself with wounds so that she would stroll through it. When the second line comes before us, then we are surprised and pleased to see that the speaker has made these wounds, and the speaker's body itself is the garden.

To call the breast a peacock's wing is eloquent, but to call the hand a bouquet is more eloquent, because the fingers of the hand are like a rose-plant [gul-piyaadah], and the wounds on the hands and fingers are like some other kind of flower (for example, the narcissus). And the breast is, so to speak, a basket of roses, from which the roses are selected and made into a corsage.

For more about wounding the hands and considering them to be a bouquet, see:




In all these verses, Mir's speaker is more or less a madman, but 'clever in his own affairs' [ba-kaar-e ;xvud hushyaar], and a master of the art of wounding himself.

Mus'hafi presents another aspect of this, in which the lover has passed beyond himself, and perhaps is also not entirely acquainted with the art of self-wounding [gul khaanaa]:

mu.s;hafii tuu ne to pah;Nche ko jalaa ;Daalaa tamaam
yih bhii ay naa-daa;N ko))ii hotii hai gul khaane kii :tar;h

[Mus'hafi, you burned up the whole breadth of it!
is this, oh foolish one, any way of doing 'self-wounding'?]

In Mus'hafi's verse the 'mood' and 'dramaticness' are of the highest order. By the time of Sardar Ja'fri, this theme has become almost one of prose expression:

za;xm kaho yaa khultii kalyaa;N haath magar gul-dastah hai
baa;G-e jahaa;N se ham ne chune hai;N phuul bahut aur ;xaar bahut

[whether you would call them wounds, or opening buds-- but the hand is a bouquet
from the garden of the world we have chosen many flowers and many thorns]

The first line was very fine; the second line's unnecessary detail has spoiled it. Then, Sardar Ja'fri's speaker has an innocence and simplicity that are contrived, because his tone is full of [the English word] 'cutesiness' [a;Thlaaha;T]-- while Mus'hafi, by making the speaker to be someone other than the lover, has saved his verse from being 'cutesy'.

Siraj Aurangabadi has well versified a theme parallel to Mir's:

jaa;N supaarii daa;G katthaa chuunaa chashm-e inti:zaar
vaas:te mihmaan ;Gam ke dil hai bii;Raa paan kaa

[life, betel-nut; wound, catechu; lime, the eye of waiting
for the sake of the guest Grief, the heart is a 'bira' of paan]

In Siraj's verse, along with cheerfulness and wit, there's also a bit of depth.

To call the wounded breast a peacock, or the wing of a peacock, has been common in our classical poetry. Qa'im Chandpuri:

hai;N jo pardaaz tire daa;G me;N dil ke qaa))im
saath us ;husn ke kab jalvah-e :taa))uusii hai

[those tiny paint-lines that are in the wound in your heart, Qa'im
together with that beauty-- when is there [such] a peacock-like radiance?!]

Shah Nasir:

yih dil-e pur-daa;G naalaa;N kyuu;N nah ho us zulf me;N
dekh kar bole hai :taa))uus-e gulistaanii gha;Taa

[why would this heart full of wounds not lament, in those curls
having seen which, the peacock of the garden calls them a cloud-mass]

Shah Nasir:

ban gayaa daa;Go;N se siinah mi;sl-e :taa))uus-e chaman
pesh-paa uftaadah hai ab to gulistaa;N kii :tara;h

[through wounds, the breast became like the peacock of the garden
it is now trampled underfoot, like the garden]

In Mir's and Kalim Hamadani's verses, the innovation is that he has declared himself to be a garden fit for the enjoyment of the beloved, and has proved the existence of the garden by calling his wounds 'roses'. Mir improved upon this by calling the wounded breast a peacock's wing. Qa'im saw in the beauty of the wounds a glimpse of the art of the painter. Mir's present verse, and Kalim's and Qa'im's verses, occupy an equally high level.

[See also {950,1}.]



The placing of tamaamii makes it a perfect 'midpoint'-- it can be read with either the phrase before it, or the phrase after it. And of course the juxtaposition dast gul-dastah is so enjoyable because a bouquet is literally a 'handful of flowers'.

SRF gives the lover agency, as someone who has chosen to turn his wounds into a garden. But the grammar of the first line makes it clear that the garden has simply 'come into being', through unspecified means. Then even the second line gives us only a pair of equations, with no indication of any agent or arranger. So perhaps all this simply happened to the lover, without his conscious volition?