Ghazal 49, Verse 7


baskih dau;Re hai rag-e taak me;N ;xuu;N ho ho kar
shahpar-e rang se hai baal-kushaa mauj-e sharaab

1a) it runs to such an extent in the vein of the grapevine, having [progressively] become blood
1b) although it runs in the vein of the grapevine, having [progressively] become blood

2) with a royal-feather of style/'color' it is wing-opening, the wave of wine


dau;Re hai is an archaic form of dau;Rtii hai ; GRAMMAR.


shahpar : 'The longest feather in a wing.' (Steingass, p. 769)


rang : 'Colour, tint, hue, complexion; ...appearance, aspect; fashion, style; character, nature; mood, mode, manner, method'. (Platts p.601)


That is, the way blood flows in the veins, in the same way in the veins of grapevines runs the essence of wine, and because of it the grapevines flourish verdantly. Thus its running is flight, and its greenery and colorfulness are the royal-feather of flight. (46)

== Nazm page 45; Nazm page 46

Bekhud Dihlavi:

He says, the essence of wine is running in the veins of grape-vines, the way blood runs in veins. And the way people's faces grow rosy from the running of blood, in the same way greenness and verdantness have been engendered in grape-vines by the wave of wine, as if greenness and and verdantness were engendered by the royal-feather of flight. (88-89)

Bekhud Mohani:

The essence of wine runs through every grape-leaf, the way blood runs in human veins, and the greenness and flourishingness of the leaves act as a royal-feather for flight. When a man is very strong, then blood runs freely. (113)


WINE: {49,1}

This whole ghazal is unusually lyrical and sensuous, isn't it? It has such flowingness that even to read it aloud is almost intoxicating. The evocative (and resonant) phrase baal-kushaa , literally 'wing-opening' or 'wing-spreading', appears in the first line of the first verse, {49,1}, and is echoed here. In English we speak of 'flights' of imagination, and of being 'high', so the metaphorical range comes through somewhat even in translation.

The word rang is also perfect, with its range of meaning from 'color' into realms of abstraction; for an example of even more multivalent use of this word, see {6,1}. When a 'wave of wine' opens its wings and prepares to take flight, what else except 'color, mood, style, nature' (any or all of them, of course) would be its 'royal feather', the longest feather in its wing? To personify an already metaphorical 'wave' of wine as a bird in flight is a creative feat of (doubly metaphorical) imagination in itself.

For more on the double meaning in the first line of baskih , 'although' (as itself and as short for az-baskih , 'to such an extent'), see {1,5}. In the present verse both possibilities are fully engaged by the second line. If we read it as short for az-baskih , as in (1a), we see that the blood-wine in the veins of the grape-vines (and what could be more vein-like than a vine?) is so potent that because of its power it also becomes a kind of wing of color and flight. If we read it as simply baskih , 'although', as in (1b), we learn that even though wine has the (liquid) form of blood in the vine-veins, nevertheless it also has the airy power of feathers, wings, and flight.

"Wine on the Vine II" ┬ęSandi Whetzel