Ghazal 58, Verse 8

{58,8}

na:zar me;N kha;Tke hai bin tere ghar kii aabaadii
hameshah rote hai;N ham dekh kar dar-o-diivaar

1) in the gaze/eyesight, the comfort/activity of the house pricks/rankles, without you
2) we always weep, {seeing / having seen} doors and walls

Notes:

kha;Tke hai is an archaic form of kha;Taktii hai (GRAMMAR)

 

kha;Taknaa : 'To prick, to rankle (in, - me;N ), to fester (in); to prove offensive (to)'. (Platts p.871)

 

aabaadii : 'Inhabited spot or place; ...prosperity; state of comfort; happiness, joy, pleasure.' (Platts p.2)

Nazm:

== Nazm page 53

Bekhud Dihlavi:

He says, in separation from you the bustle of our house pricks in our eyes; the necessary result of something's pricking in the eyes is that tears begin to flow. When we see our doors and walls we always weep at the memory of you. (100)

Bekhud Mohani:

Mir Taqi Mir says {265,5}

aa))ii bahaar-o-gulshan gul se bharaa hai lekin
har goshah-e chaman me;N ;xaalii hai jaa-e bulbul


[spring has come, and the garden is full of roses, but
in every corner of the garden, the Nightingale's place is empty]. (128)

FWP:

SETS
GAZE: {10,12}
HOME: {14,9}

Bekhud Mohani compares this verse to one of Mir's great masterpieces, a verse so brilliant, mysterious, and full of mood --especially the second line-- that it does overshadow the present verse.

Unlike Mir's 'mood' verse, Ghalib's is based partly on wordplay: the idea of 'in [our] eyesight', na:zar me;N . In a general way, what is in our eyesight is the house and its doings; but in a specific way, what is in our eye(sight) is a thorn, suggested by the verb kha;Taknaa , 'to prick'. The house collapses into a 'thorn' because both of them are 'in [our] eyesight'. And the inevitable result of either one would be tears, so having both in our eyes together makes us constantly weep.

More punchy and remarkable, however, is the second line. When we know that it's the aabaadii , literally, 'inhabitedness', of the house that makes the lover weep, we expect some reference to people, activity, hustle and bustle-- what in Urdu is often called the raunaq , the 'glory', of a house. That in itself would be sufficiently punchy, since what makes everyone else happy would make the lover weep.

But then we learn that what the lover calls aabaadii is-- doors and walls. What he means by 'inhabitedness, comfort, prosperity, joy' is simply the solitary, stark enclosure of the house itself. What an enjoyable shock to our expectations! Without the beloved, even that minimal degree of domestic 'comfort' offends him. Remember {56,3}, in which the lover reproaches his heart for presuming to want even so much as a nap.

And if the lover in fact weeps any time he sees any doors and walls, in anybody's house-- as seems quite a possible reading, because the verse says nothing about the house being his own-- he'll be weeping all the time. (Why are we not surprised?)