Ghazal 49, Verse 2


puuchh mat vaj'h-e siyah-mastii-e arbaab-e chaman
saayah-e taak me;N hotii hai havaa mauj-e sharaab

1) don't ask the reason for the {extreme/'black'}-drunkenness of the lords of the garden!
2) in the shade/shadow/shelter of the grapevine, the breeze is [habitually] a wave of wine


siyaah-mastii : 'Extreme drunkenness'. (Platts p.709)


saayah : 'Shadow, shade; shelter, protection'. (Platts p.631)


taak : 'A vine; creeper; branch of any tree growing like a vine; grapes.'. (Platts p.305)


havaa : 'Air, atmosphere, ether, the space between heaven and earth; --air, wind, gentle gale;... --affection, favour, love, mind, desire, passionate fondness; lust, carnal desire, concupiscence'. (Platts p.1239)


That is, in the shadow of the grapevine the air is so forceful-- as if it has become a wave of wine. The pleasure of 'black-drunkenness' has a great affinity with the shadow. (44)

== Nazm page 44


The poet says that when the trees are swaying drunkenly in the garden, the cause for their mood of joy is that the breeze has passed through the shadow of the grape-vines and taken on the effect of wine. (48)

Bekhud Dihlavi:

He says, in the shadow of the grapevine the air is so joy-inspiring that it's as if it has become a wave of wine. The swaying of the trees is not because of the breeze; rather, the branches sway because of the intoxication of 'black-drunkenness'. (87-88)


In this verse the excellence of 'elegance in assigning a cause' is found. (397)


WINE: {49,1}

How much more lyrical and intoxicated-seeming can a verse get? The commentators have explained the wordplay; extreme intoxication is idiomatically called siyaah-mastii , literally 'black-drunkenness', and in its literal meaning the expression perfectly evokes the dark shade or shadow [saayah] of the grapevine in the garden. The 'lords of the garden' are the birds and flowers, and they too are as inebriated with the springtime as are the humans who join them in celebration.

There's an enjoyable sound-play between siyah (shortened from siyaah , to fit the meter) and saayah , that echoes the wordplay between the same two words.

Here havaa seems chiefly to mean 'breeze, air'. But where siyah-mastii is involved, can 'desire' be far behind? This alternative sense hovers invisibly over the verse.