dil agar kahtaa huu;N to kahtaa hai vuh yih dil hai kyaa
aise naa-daa;N dil-rubaa ke milne kaa ;ha.sil hai kyaa

1) if I say 'heart', then she says, 'What is this "heart"?!'
2) from the obtaining of such an ignorant/innocent heart-stealer-- what's the result/benefit?!



naa-daa;N : 'Ignorant, unlearned; simple, silly; innocent'. (Platts p.1110)


;haa.sil : 'Product, produce, outcome, what is cleared, what remains (of anything), result, issue, ultimate consequence; inference, deduction, corollary; produce or net produce (of land, or of anything that is a source of revenue), revenue; —acquiring, acquisition, advantage, profit, gain, good; sum, sum and substance, substance, purport, import, object'. (Platts p.473)

S. R. Faruqi:

The verse is comparatively ordinary, but the air of conversation and the masterful use of grammar and idiom have given it too something special. In the first line there are the following possibilities:

1) When in the beloved's presence I use the word 'heart', then by way of coquettishness or ignorance she asks, 'What is a heart?'

2) WhenI take my heart before the beloved and say 'Look, this is my heart', then she says, 'Is this a heart? Is this what they call a heart?' (That is, she speaks with contempt.)

3) When I say to the beloved, 'Heart?'-- that is, when I ask, 'Do you know what a heart is?' or 'What have you done with my heart?'-- then the beloved asks with astonishment, 'What sort of thing is a heart?'

4) When I say to the beloved, 'Heart?'-- that is, when I ask, 'Do you know about the heart? Do you have a heart (that is, my heart)?' or 'Do you have a heart, is there a heart in your breast or not?'-- then the beloved says, 'Heart? Do I have a heart?'

5) Or the beloved says in reply, 'This heart (that is, your heart)-- what is it?! I have a great many of such hearts.'

In the second line, there are two interpretations of ke milne . One is 'to meet with', and the other is 'to obtain'. And since in the first line there are a number of possibilities that the heart is still in the lover's possession, to call the beloved a 'heart-stealer' is not without pleasure. In calling the beloved 'ignorant' there's also the aspect that the beloved might really be foolish, and also that she is uncomprehending, and doesn't know the worth of the lover's heart.



Here's a verse so multitudinous and sneakily enjoyable that its mix-and-match possibilities can only be itemized. The multivalence of kyaa is fully on display:

dil agar kahtaa huu;N gives rise to:

='If I say 'heart''(in some general sense)
='If I call it a heart' (with a colloquially omitted us ko )

yih dil hai kyaa gives rise to:

='What is this 'heart'?'
='Is this a heart?'
='As if this is a heart!'

ke milne kaa gives rise, as SRF notes, to:

=the obtaining of
=the meeting with (though nowadays we'd use se instead of ke )

;haa.sil hai kyaa gives rise to:

=is there any result/benefit?
=what result/benefit is there?
=as if there's any result/benefit!
=what a result/benefit there is!

This final exclamation can quite well be joyous, as though the lover expects to take advantage of a young or innocent beloved who won't know enough to be cruel, disdainful, and so on. But conversely it's also possible that the beloved is actually tricky and devious, and is simply playing dumb-- so that it's the poor naive lover himself who is really the vulnerable, simple, innocent one. For what's a more compelling form of deviousness than a show of innocence? The show must be effective of course, and the verse makes it clear that if any such show is taking place, it's very effective indeed, since the lover doesn't seem to suspect it for a moment.

Compare Mir's vision of the naive and foolish would-be lover:


Here's a verse in which Ghalib too plays specifically with the question of the innocence or simplicity of the beloved-- or the lover: