agarchih ;xushk hai;N jaise par-e kaah
u;Re hai;N miir-jii lekin havaa me;N

1) although he is dry/withered like a feather/leaf of dried-grass
2) still Mir-ji has {become arrogant / flown in the air/desire}



;xushk : 'Dry; parched; withered; —pure, mere, plain, bare'. (Platts p.490)


par : 'A wing; a feather; a leaf'. (Steingass p.239)

S. R. Faruqi:

havaa me;N u;Rnaa = to become arrogant

This idea is based on a [Persian] verse by Kalim Hamadani:

'Our mind is such that we flee from shadows,
With this, we claim that we conquer the sun.'

In both verses, the self-directed sarcasm is fine. And in Kalim's verse the opposition of the images in the two lines is very much worthy of attention.

But Mir has sustained his own idea. In the first line, he's called himself a leaf of dry grass. In the second line, he's used the idiom of 'flying in the air' in such a way that the dictionary definition too has become correct, because bits of straw and dry grass do indeed keep flying around in the air.

In the third divan, because the wordplay of par-e kaah is absent, this very same theme has remained unsuccessful [{1208,11}]:

.za((iif-o-zaar tangii se hai;N har chand
valekin miir u;Rte hai;N havaa me;N

[although from distress he is weak and afflicted
nevertheless Mir has become arrogant]

Instead of havaa me;N u;Rnaa , people usually say havaa par u;Rnaa . In nuur ul-lu;Gaat and farhang-e a;sar this idiom doesn't appear. In both nuur ul-lu;Gaat and aa.sifiyah only havaa par u;Rnaa is noted. [Other dictionaries show similar results.] To this extent, it ought to be called an invention of Mir's.



The wordplay of havaa me;N u;Rnaa in the second line is supplemented by the 'wing, feather' of a straw in the first line; 'wing, feather' so far outweighs 'leaf' in Urdu usage that the 'leaf' meaning doesn't appear in Platts at all (though it does in Steingass). And of course, enjoyably, havaa means not only 'air' but also 'desire'.

Would Mir call himself 'Mir-ji'? To me it seems more probable that the speaker is someone else, talking about Mir. The plural forms make the utterance sound polite, with the criticism in it ('he's become arrogant') tempered by compassion ('he's skinny and dried-up'). Isn't that the tone Mir's neighbors often use when speaking with him?