===
0736,
1
===

 

{736,1}

ko))ii faqir yih ay kaash-ke du((aa kartaa
kih mujh ko us kii galii kaa ;xudaa gadaa kartaa

1) oh, if only some faqir had made this prayer/blessing,
2) that the Lord would have made me a beggar in her street!

 

Notes:

faqiir : 'A poor man; a beggar; a religious mendicant; a derwish; an ascetic, a devotee'. (Platts p.783)

S. R. Faruqi:

There are a number of pleasures in the verse. One is the 'faqir's' saying a prayer/blessing. By 'faqir' can be meant 'one devoted to God', and also 'a poor or indigent person'. The second meaning isn't inappropriate, because it's said that 'a poor man's prayer has power'.

A second pleasure is that in his longing for the prayer to be made by someone else, is the suggestion that his own prayer has already been proved ineffective.

A third pleasure is that people usually arrange for a prayer to be said for some great success to be attained, such as that wealth would be acquired, that one would be freed from sickness, that an enemy would be brought low, etc. Here the prayer is that he might be vouchsafed beggar-ship in the beloved's street, as if for any success greater than that (such as access to the beloved, or her favor, etc.) there's not even a hope at all; he's so hopeless of it that even to get some faqir to pray for it seems useless.

A fourth pleasure is in the phrase ;xudaa gadaa kartaa . Because he has placed ;xudaa and gadaa together, at first it appears that there's some ambiguity or error in the utterance; thus one is obliged to read the verse again. Then because he has placed galii kaa and ;xudaa together, there can be the misunderstanding of considering galii kaa ;xudaa to be a single phrase.

Every device [tarkiib] that would have the effect of causing one to give attention to the words a second time, is desirable and laudable [mar;Guub-o-ma:tbuu((]-- provided that the semantic [ma((navii] or verbal [laf:zii] beauty of the verse would also increase, and it would not be only obscurantism/'riddle-making' [mu((ammaa))iyat]. In the present verse it's not obscurantism; rather, it's a delicate (although commonplace) complexity.

FWP:

SETS == EXCLAMATION; KIH
MOTIFS
NAMES
TERMS == DEVICE; IHAM

Bravo! Let me pause to savor once again that excellent formulation of SRF's:

Every device that would have the effect of causing one to give attention to the words a second time, is desirable and laudable [mar;Guub-o-ma:tbuu((]-- provided that the semantic [ma((navii] or verbal [laf:zii] beauty of the verse would also increase, and it would not be only obscurantism/'riddle-making' [mu((ammaa))iyat].

Needless to say, when I push the concept of 'iham' to include marginal cases (see {736,3} for another such case; see {178,1} for a general discussion of iham), I'm thinking along these lines too. And SRF gives a couple of such idiosyncratic examples from this verse itself. Moreover, almost all the technical devices I discovered when working with Ghalib, and by extension with Mir, fit under this rubric.

In fact, in the second line the kih sets up another ambiguity as well. Since kih can introduce a quotation, the second line might quote the prayer or blessing that I wish some faqir had given me. And since kih can mean, among other things, 'so that', the second line could also describe the outcome that I wish had occurred. In the present verse these two are not so different, but the positioning mechanism for kih is clearly in working order for other verses in which they can readily be so.

Note for meter fans: The spelling kaash-ke is of course designed to accommodate, and reflect, the necessary scansion of long-short-long. Compare the normal spelling in {736,3}.