so chitte aate hai;N jii me;N pag;Rii par gul rakkhe se
kis ko dimaa;G rahaa hai us ke jo ;harf-e ;xashn u;Thaave ab

1) thus thoughts/concerns keep coming to the inner-self, from having put a rose on the turban,
2) who has the mind/spirits left, to endure his harsh reproaches now?



chintaa (of which chittaa is a variant) : 'Thought, consideration, reflection; attention; recollection; care, concern, anxiety, solicitude; doubt, suspense; —risk, peril, danger, fear'. (Platts p.443)


dimaa;G : 'The brain; head, mind, intellect; spirit; fancy, desire; airs, conceit; pride, haughtiness, arrogance; intoxication; high spirits'. (Platts p.526)


;harf : 'Blame, censure, reproach, stigma, animadversion'. (Platts p.476)


;xashn : 'Being rough, roughness'. (Steingass p.463)

S. R. Faruqi:

;xashn : harsh, severe

The theme, thought, and words of this verse are all so novel that even in Mir's poetry it's difficult to find their peer. And the pleasure is that in the tone of the verse withdrawal and disaffectedness have become so mingled that it's hard to decide what the original impetus of the verse would have been.

For 'thought' or 'perplexity' Mir has searched out a supreme word like chittaa , and the fruit of this is an affinity too, because flowers are often spotted [chittii-daar]. The beloved has put flowers in his turban and is wandering around. Various kinds of thoughts torment the lover. By not clarifying them, the speaker has left the field open for imagination: 1) Some other lover has given him these flowers. 2) By placing these flowers there, he intended to please some other admirer. 3) To put flowers there is a kind of adornment; perhaps in this way he wishes to attract others. Etc.

It comes into the lover's heart to ask the beloved, 'Why have you placed these flowers in your turban?' But then he thinks, 'His temperament nowadays is not forthcoming; now if I ask that question, he will give a snappish reply. And I don't have the strength to listen to this; so it's better just to remain silent.'

In the verse the following ideas are understood/implied:

1) At one time he used to be on friendly terms with the beloved; now for some days the beloved's behavior seems to have greatly changed.

2) The beloved now feels more markedly that he is not bound to the lover, thus he dislikes any interrogation about what he says and does; in fact if you ask him about something, he becomes angry.

3) The beloved now openly adorns himself and goes out of his house, or meets with people.

4) Even previously, the lover's temperament was nervous/sensitive; now it has become even more so.

5) Despite all these things, he's now/still not ready to break off relations with the lover.

6) To continue to endure pain in silence, and to remain unhappy at his situation, and to feel anger at himself because of his lack of courage as he sees the beloved slipping out of his hands-- nowadays these are the activities of the lover.

All these ideas, and the absolutely new image of placing flowers in the turban, and two moods in the tone of the verse-- what more than this could anybody want?



Through the emphasis on the turban and thus on the head, there's also nice wordplay with 'mind' [dimaa;G] and with u;Thaanaa ['to lift up']. And the rahaa hai works well with the ab , to strengthen the poignant sense of a sad change of state. I take gul to be singular because I think it's more evocative that way (it's perhaps a particular rose with a special meaning), though I agree with SRF that it could refer to a bunch of roses.

The grammar of the first line would certainly suggest that the same (human) subject should be supplied for both the main clause (thoughts come to X's inner-self) and the adverbial clause (from X's putting one or more roses in a turban) and also the possessive (X's turban). It's an arbitrary and grammatically dubious practice to require the reader to colloquially supply two different human subjects for one sentence, since of course the general rule is that the subject can be omitted only when it's clear, and two different omitted (human) subjects can't exactly be called clear.

This situation naturally alerts us to check to see whether the first line could also be read in a grammatically preferable way: either 1) the thoughts come to the beloved, after he puts a rose in his turban; or 2) the thoughts come to the lover, after he puts a rose in his turban. Since chittaa has such strong overtones of 'worry, anxiety' (and even 'danger, fear'), it doesn't seem so suitable for the coquettish beloved as he savors the rose in his turban. Nor does that reading give such a good 'connection' with the second line.

The idea of the wretched lover adorning his own turban with a rose doesn't entirely commend itself, either. But in fact it's conceivable. Perhaps he has a special rose that's a souvenir of the old days when he and the beloved were on better terms. Perhaps he'd think of putting a rose in his turban just to try feebly to assert himself, to act cheerful and defiant and deny the sad change in his circumstances. But then of course-- the worry, the anxiety! Perhaps he'd better take the rose off, rather than risk what might well be a hostile reaction from the temperamental beloved.