kaar-e dil us mah-e tamaam se hai
kaahish ik roz mujh ko shaam se hai

1) the work of the heart is with/through that full moon
2) a particular decline/anxiety is upon me every day, from the evening [onwards]



kaahish : 'Diminution; decline, decay, wasting, emaciation, consumption; wear and tear; care, anxiety'. (Platts p.808)

S. R. Faruqi:

kaahish = decline

Here too, the opening-verse is by way of introduction. But because of some interesting wordplay, it too is not devoid of pleasure. With regard to mah-e tamaam , the words kaahish and shaam are interesting. Between kaahish and mah there's an affinity. There's wordplay among tamaam , kaahish , mah , shaam .

Then, roz means 'every day', but at first glance one makes the error that ik roz -- that is, only one single day-- is being discussed. Such a structure always produces an enjoyable tension. The wordplay of roz , mah-e tamaam , shaam is obvious.



The speaker is so obsessed with his radiant beloved, 'that full moon', that he himself experiences the waning that every full moon must encounter. (Maybe, frivolously speaking, like a sympathetic pregnancy that some men are said to experience along with their partners.) Or perhaps he only feels a 'care, anxiety' at the thought of her decline. Intriguingly, the verse gives us no hint as to whether 'that full moon' herself in fact experiences any decline. Perhaps he somehow experiences the decline for her? (Now we're in 'Picture of Dorian Gray' territory.)

SRF rightly points to the sequence ik roz as a source of an almost inevitable initial error, since we can hardly avoid seeing it as 'one day'. Only the context of the full verse enables us to go back and realize that the line can only work if ik is read with kaahish . This source of confusion must surely have been, if not consciously created, then deliberately allowed to remain (since it seems impossible that Mir wouldn't have noticed what all of us at once notice). Does this count as an 'iham'? The answer would depend on what definition of iham we decide to adopt.