.su;hbat dar-giir aate us ke pahar gha;Rii saa((at nah hu))ii
jab aa))e hai;N ghar se us ke tab aa))e hai;N ak;sar daa;G

1) her company affecting/'burning' us favorably-- not for a watch, an hour, a moment did it occur!

2a) when [things] have come from her house, then usually/mostly wounds have come
2b) when we have come from her house, then we have come usually/mostly [as] a wound



dar-giir : 'Taking hold of, making an impression, effective; burning, inflaming'. (Platts p.509)


ak;sar : 'Most; many; much; a great many, very many; —s.m. The greater number, the majority;—adv. Generally, for the most part, mostly, chiefly, often, frequently, commonly, usually'. (Platts p.65)

S. R. Faruqi:

dar-giir honaa = to be favorable

In Persian, dar-giir shudan and dar giriftan are idioms meaning 'to be favorable', 'to be pleased'. This translation of Mir's too [like the one in {1650,2}] didn't become customary, because it's not mentioned in the dictionaries.

The meter too of this verse is not according to Mir's usual practice, and from one point of view this verse can be said to be out of meter. In this connection, for further discussion see


As far as the interpretation of the verse is concerned, the first point is that in the two lines two quite separate things have been said. In the first line he has said that whenever he has even come there ( aate us ke ), then her company did not please him for a single watch, a single hour, in fact not even a single moment. That is, she said one or another harsh thing, she played some trick such that his heart, instead of becoming happy, became melancholy. In the second line he says that whenever he came back from there, then he came usually as a wound (that is, sorrowful). Another reading is that when something came from her house as a gift, then usually nothing but wounds came.

In 'a watch, an hour, a moment' there's not merely repetition or emphasis; rather, they all have their own meanings. A pahar is used for the eighth part of a day; that is, one 'watch' is three hours. For gha;Rii there are three meanings: (1) an eighth of a 'watch'-- that is, 22 1/2 minutes; (2) an hour; (3) a very small period of time; for example, an instant. Similarly, saa((at too has two meanings: (1) a very short period of time; for example, an instant; (2) an hour.

This kind of theme, that there's access to the beloved, is well established; but Mir doesn't just maintain it, it's a special theme of his. In the work of later poets this is almost nonexistent. He's composed a fine verse.

A verse based on a reading of the second line he has composed elsewhere as well, but not with such enjoyableness; in the second divan [{834,3}]:

jii jal gayaa taqarrub-e a;Gyaar dekh kar
ham us galii me;N jab ga))e tab vaa;N se laa))e daa;G

[our inner-self burned, seeing the access of the Others
when we went into that street, then from there we brought a wound]

From the fourth divan [{1413,3}]:

jal ga))e dekh garmii-e a;Gyaar
aa))e us kuuche se to aa))e daa;G

[we burned, seeing the heat of the Others
when we came from that street, we came as a wound]



There's also the nice heat imagery, with the secondary meaning of dar-giir as 'burning' (see the definition above), and the metrically prominent positioning of tab in the second line, which of course means 'heat' as well as being a correlative pronoun. The association of wounds with burning has been discussed by SRF in {1650,2}.

SRF notes that the three words for time intervals all have different meanings; but he doesn't go on to do anything with this idea-- which isn't surprising, since as he presents them they significantly overlap. To my mind, they should be taken sequentially in order of diminishing length, as I've translated them; such a ranking is of course possible, though not required. Only as a sequence do they have the fine rhetorical effect they are surely aiming to achieve.

As SRF also points out, the second half of the second line can be translated, depending on what we take to be its subject, either as 'wounds have come' or as 'we have come [as] a wound'. In either case, we have to provide the subject ourselves, since the verse doesn't give us one at all.

Note for meter fans: The sticking point for critics is pa-har gha-;Rii which scans - = - = , although normally in this meter the scansion in that place should be = - - = . In this 'Hindi meter' even-numbered long syllables are breakable into two short syllables, but normally they must remain together and not bounce around as they do here. Of course, the syncopation is really delightful and adds to the pleasure of this uniquely swingy meter. For a similarly unconventional (but resolvable) case, see {1624,1}.