gar rang hai chalaa hai var buu hai to havaa hai
kah'h miir is chaman me;N kis se lagaa))iye dil

1) if there's color, it has set out [to leave]; and if there's scent, then it's 'gone with the wind'
2) tell me, Mir-- in this garden, to whom/what will/would you attach the heart?



chalnaa : 'To move, stir; to go, proceed; to depart; to walk, travel; to flow, run (as a stream, a pen, &c.); ... to set out, to start; to begin, be begun, be introduced; to pass (as coin), to be current, be in vogue, be in operation, be in force; to walk ...; to go on well, to flourish, thrive (as a business, &c.); to progress, advance; to go beyond, to exceed (due bounds); to go on, continue (from some past time), be transmitted or handed down; to last, endure'. (Platts p.439)


var : ' (contrac. of va agar ), conj. And if'. (Platts p.1185)


havaa ho jaanaa (of which havaa honaa is a variant: 'To fly with the velocity of the wind; to run with the wind; — to scamper off, to vanish, disappear'. (Platts p.1240)


kis : 'The formative of the oblique cases of the sing. of the interrog. pron. kaun , 'who,' &c.' (Platts p.832)

S. R. Faruqi:

Let's reflect on the meaning of the present verse. If we take rang chalnaa to be the opposite of rang ;Thaharnaa , then the meaning emerges that color has no stability. If we take chalaa hai to be the past of chalnaa , then it will mean that color is about to take its leave, or is taking its leave (and from 'to go away' the extended sense of 'to die' also appears). If we take chalnaa to mean 'to make progress, to be radiant', etc., then the meaning will become that color is at a fine level of power. In this case the verse comes to have less 'connection'.

Thus the best meaning is that if we take the garden to be 'color', then it has no stability, or it is about to take its leave. And if we call the garden 'scent', then it's only air, no one can see it; and it too has no stability, in the sense that the air/breeze doesn't stay in any one place.

Mir has used the same type of construction with another theme, in the first divan [{585,8}]:

((aalam me;N aab-o-gil kaa ;Thahraa))o kis :tara;h ho
gar ;xaak hai u;Re hai var aab hai ravaa;N hai

[in the world, what kind of stability of water and earth would there be?
if there's dust, it flies; and if there's water, it's flowing]

In both verses the metrical equality of gar and var is fine. But in the following verse, he has lifted the theme of the present verse into the heights. From the second divan:


This verse will be discussed in its place.

To use lagaa))iye dil as a rhyme for judaa))ii-e dil was, up till Mir's time, proper. With regard to sound, it's undoubtedly proper, but another reason can also be that it was customary then to [show an izafat after a long vowel as a ye ]. It's a pity that many of the flexibilities [aasaaniyaa;N] that were vouchsafed to our poets in an earlier generation, later people would reject on the basis of various mistaken notions and opinions. Thus even today certain people exist who want, relying on 'Ustads', to impose many unnecessary restrictions and limitations.

Consider another such example of the freedom of the rhyme, from the poetry of Dard:

jii nah u;T;Thuu;N kahii;N phir mai;N jo tuu maare daaman
jhaa;R mat ;xaak pah merii yih ;Gubaar-e daaman

[may I not rise up alive again, if you would fling your garment-hem!
don't sweep over my dust, this dust of your garment-hem]

This kind of rhyme is found in the poetry of Qa'im Chandpuri as well:

yuu;N jale aah patange saa tamaashaa))ii-e sham((a
aag lagyo tujhe ay anjuman-aaraa))ii-e sham((a

shai;x-jii raat andhere me;N tum aa))e ho yahaa;N
aap ke vaas:te gar amr ho mangvaa))iye sham((a

[he would burn, ah! like a Moth/spark, the spectator of the candle
may you burn, oh gathering-adorningness of the candle!

Shaikh-ji, in the darkness of the night you've come here
if you have some action in mind, please ask for a candle]

Both verses of Qa'im's are very fine; the second verse is in Mir's style.



The first line consists of two halves with parallel structure and internal rhyme, and a repetition so intense that four of its eleven words consist of hai . Naturally enough, it's impossible to tell exactly what's being said about what. In true mushairah-verse style, the verse remains uninterpretable until the last possible moment, when (under mushairah performance conditions) we're finally allowed to hear lagaa))iye dil .

An enjoyably subtle touch is the use of kis , which is normally the oblique of kaun , 'who', while kis chiiz or kis baat would be used for the oblique of kyaa . Since both the entities mentioned in the first line are non-persons, the effect is a subtle wafting into the verse of the thought of the beloved.