Ghazal 71, Verse 7


ai tiraa ;Gamzah yak-qalam angez
ai tiraa :zulm sar bah sar andaaz

1) ah your side-glances-- utterly/wholly arousing!

2a) ah your cruelty-- everywhere/'head-to-head' throwing/casting!
2b) ah your cruelty-- entirely style/coquetry!


;Gamzah : 'A sign with the eye, a wink; an amorous glance, ogling; coquetry, affectation'. (Platts p.773)


angez : 'Stirring up, rousing, exciting, raising, fomenting, causing; --raised, elevated, &c. (used as last member of comp. e.g. fitnah-angez , adj. & s.m. Strife-exciting; mischievous; mischief-maker, &c.)'. (Platts p.98)


sar-basar : 'From end to end, totally, wholly, entirely'. (Platts p.648)


andaaz : 'Throwing; thrower, caster, shooter; (used as last member of comp. e.g. barq-andaaz , lit. 'lightning-thrower,' a matchlock-man'. (Platts p.90)

andaaz : 'Elegance, grace; mode, manner, style, fashion, pattern; carriage, bearing, gait'. (Platts p.90)


The aspect of these two sentences is that of information [;xabar], but the poet has the intention of inshaa.... ai is the vocative [;harf-e nidaa], and the vocative is inshaa ; for this reason its use is only in inshaa . (72)

== Nazm page 72

Bekhud Mohani:

Both lines are parallel [baraabar ke].... Oh beloved, your side-glance is the very essence of airs and graces; and not just that-- your cruelty is entirely coquettish. (154)


Your side-glance is entirely arousing to the emotions of the lover, and your cruelty too, like airs and graces, is completely heart-pleasing. angez doesn't seem very good. (234)


This verse ought to be considered, along with [the following one], a verse-set [qi:t((ah-band]. [For more, see {71,8}.] (156)



This verse is as conspicuous an example of parallelism as can be found; such parallelism is called .tarsii(( . We're never in the slightest doubt that the two lines are addressed to the same person, the beloved, and are offering two-fold praise of her qualities. Josh and Bekhud Mohani (154) consider this and the following verse, {71,8}, to constitute a verse-set, but this view is very much a minority one.

The piquant quality of the verse is that each line ends with a Persian compound-ender (see the definitions above)-- but one that has been used as a free-standing adjective. (He's done something similar in {60,3}.) The speaker explains this in the verse itself. In the first line, her coquettish sidelong glances are not this-arousing or that-arousing, they are entirely, globally, simply, 'arousing'. For this totalness he has used yak-qalam , the same expression as in {69,2}; for more on these yak constructions, see {11,1}.

In the second line, her cruelty is apparently not this-throwing or that-throwing, but utterly, from-one-end-to-the-other [sar bah sar] everything-throwing (2a). And here we realize Ghalib's cleverness: through the strong parallelism with the first line, he has caused us to read andaaz as a specialized Persian compound-ender used in an uncommon way. Whereas of course, the moment we stop to consider, we realize that andaaz is also an absolutely established, classic word for manner, style, airs and graces, as in (2b); on the poet's own andaaz see {62,11}.

One can even look a bit further. What if we insist on reading the Persian compound-enders as really the latter part of (unusual) compounds? Then in the first line her side-glances are '{whole/particular/unique}-pen-arousing', which is perfect since they are being celebrated in a written poem. And in the second line her cruelty is, literally, 'head-upon-head-throwing', What could be a better final touch for a lovely, witty, deceptive, pseudo-simple verse?

Here's my long-ago attempt at a translation (1985).