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 leaf/wing of dried-grass
2) still Mir-ji has {become arrogant / 'flown in the air'}



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


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


kaah : 'Grass; dried grass; straw'. (Platts p.808)

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.



In the first line, par-e kaah looks like a 'leaf of dried grass', which is indeed a fine image for the 'withered' lover. Not until we are allowed-- after the usual mushairah-performance delay-- to hear the second line do we encounter the lovely, idiomatic wordplay of havaa me;N u;Rnaa , so that we retrospectively also read par as 'wing, feather'. The verse thus elegantly activates both senses of par .

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 just the tone Mir's neighbors often use when speaking about him?