Ghazal 142, Verse 3x


hu))aa vi.saal se shauq-e dil-e ;harii.s ziyaadah
lab-e qadah pah kaf-e baadah josh-e tishnah-labii hai

1) through enjoyment/attainment, the ardor of the greedy heart became greater
2) on the lip of the wineglass, the froth/foam of the wine is the ebullience of thirsty-lippedness


vi.saal : 'Meeting, interview; union, conjunction; arrival (at), attainment; fruition, enjoyment of any desired object'. (Platts p.1195)


;harii.s : 'Greedy, avaricious, covetous'. (Platts p.477)


After attaining union, the ardor of the greedy heart became even greater. So to speak, the wineglass that had attained union with the wine-- its froth is the proof of the ebullience of its thirsty-lippedness. The meaning is that even after union, the lover's ebullience and turbulence do not lessen; rather, they increase further, or remain established as they were. In one [other] place he has expressed this same thought like this: {116,9}. (219)


The simile of the froth of the wine for the ebullience of thirsty-lippedness-- of something physical for something non-physical-- is an extremely eloquent simile. But by adding the first line he has made it a verse of jesting/obscenity [hazal]. A well-mannered poet ought to avoid such fancies in which the aspect of feebleness [rakaakat] is evident. (327)

Gyan Chand:

Through union, the ardor for union flared up even more. If foam has come upon someone's lips, then it makes clear that he is thirsty. The wineglass was filled with wine; he drank it up. Now on its edges (lips) a foam of wine has remained. Having seen the empty wineglass and its two foam-flecked edges, there is a desire for more wine, and thirst begins to be felt. After one time attaining union with the beloved, in this way the inner-self wants to attain union again.

== Gyan Chand, p. 335


‘UNION’: {5,2}
WINE: {49,1}

For background see S. R. Faruqi's choices. This verse is NOT one of his choices; I thought it was interesting and have added it myself. For more on Ghalib's unpublished verses, see the discussion in {4,8x}.

At first glance, this verse indeed looks to be a less effective treatment of the same theme as the gorgeously disrupted {116,9}. Asi explicitly takes it that way, and Zamin criticizes it for erotic vulgarity. But actually the verse has a more general thrust. For the heart is described as ;harii.s -- 'greedy, avaricious, covetous' (see the definition above). The only divan verse in which this adjective occurs is {60,6}, which speaks of the lover as 'greedy for the pleasure/relish of cruelty' (he wants the beloved to torment him). Thus the adjective seems to suggest some kind of morally dubious behavior, and also a dearth of real romantic intimacy or feeling. For after all, vi.saal can mean a great many relevant, greed-evoking, non-erotic things, including 'enjoyment of any desired object' (see the definition above).

There are also two ways to read the metaphor in the second line. Asi takes the 'thirsty-lippedness' to be that of the wineglass itself (the foam left on its lip shows that it craves more wine). Gyan Chand takes the 'thirsty-lippedness' to be that of the wine-drinker (the foam on his lips-- transferred to the glass-- shows that he is eager for more wine).