tab tak hii ta;hammul hai jab tak nahii;N aataa vuh
is raste nikaltaa to ham se nah rahaa jaataa

1) only/emphatically so long is there endurance/patience, as long as she doesn't come
2) if she had emerged by this road, then we could not have endured/'remained'



ta;hammul : 'Enduring patiently; patience, endurance, long-suffering, resignation, forbearance; meekness, humility; truce, peace'. (Platts p.313)

S. R. Faruqi:

In the verse the pleasure of 'implication' is fine. By saying 'by this road' he has made it clear that he is neither at home nor in the beloved's street-- he's seated somewhere on the roadway.

Behind the verse, there's also a little story. Word had come that the beloved would pass by on some road; thus he went there and remained seated beside the road. But the beloved didn't come by that way at all. When there was no hope left of her coming, he consoled his heart: 'If she had come, then we would have become out of control; all right, her not coming had at least the advantage that our endurance/patience was not tested'.



Ideally, patience and endurance are thought of as lasting until some desired event occurs; here they are thought of as lasting only as long as some desired event does not occur. Ideally, when the desired event occurs then patience and endurance are no longer necessary and can be cheerfully discarded; here, when the desired event occurs then they would be all the more necessary and required (even though impossible). The poor lover manages to have the worst of all worlds.

And when that desired event is imagined, the speaker's reaction occurs in a flurry of wordplay. Idiomatically, of course, the phrase ham se nah rahaa jaataa means 'it cannot be endured by us'. But literally the phrase means '[it] is not remained by us'-- which works well with the idea that if the beloved had 'emerged' by this road, the speaker would not have been able to endure it (to 'remain').

Moreover, the rahaa jaataa not only contains forms of both 'remain' and 'go' but also correlates well with her 'coming' and/or 'emerging'. And as a final touch, rahaa also evokes 'road' [raah , rah].