Ghazal 166, Verse 4

{166,4}

karuu;N be-daad-e ;zauq-e par-fishaanii ((ar.z kyaa qudrat
kih :taaqat u;R ga))ii u;Rne se pahle mere shah-par kii

1) if I would {present / display} the injustice/cruelty of the relish of/for wing-fluttering-- what power/force?
2) for the strength/endurance of my chief feather {vanished/ 'flew away'} before [my] flying

Notes:

((ar.z : 'Presenting or representing; representation, petition, request, address'. (Platts p.760)

 

qudrat : 'Power, ability, potency, vigour, force, authority, virtue'. (Platts p.788)

 

:taaqat : 'Ability to accomplish, capability; ability, power, energy, force, strength; ability to endure, power of endurance, endurance, patience'. (Platts p.750)

 

shaah-par (and shah-par ): 'The largest or strongest feather (in a bird's wing)'. (Platts p.719)

Nazm:

The strength/power is not in me that I would be able to {present / display} the injustice/cruelty of the relish for wing-fluttering. That is, I can no longer flutter my wings, because there's no strength in my wing. This verse is by way of an 'illustration' [tam;siil]. (180)

== Nazm page 180

Bekhud Dihlavi:

He says, what capacity do I have, that I would be able to {present/ display} the tyranny and oppression of the relish for wing-fluttering? Before it fluttered, the strength of my chief feather gave me a flat refusal. (240)

Bekhud Mohani:

Janab Shaukat says, 'The second line is an expression of injustice/cruelty. That is, I myself had a relish for the fluttering of wings. So now where in my is the strength, that I would complain of the injustice/cruelty of the relish for wing-fluttering? For before flying, why did the strength of my chief feather fly away (decline)? Whatever was done to me, was done by the relish for wing-fluttering.'

But the expression of injustice/cruelty, and a complaint, are not the same thing. (324)

FWP:

SETS == KIH; STRESS-SHIFTING

The first line is inshaa))iyah , and certainly seems to express helplessness or regret: the speaker has suffered from the 'injustice' or 'cruelty' of a 'relish for wing-fluttering', and finds himself without the power to 'present' or 'display' it.

The verse takes wonderful advantage of the multivalent possibilities of kih , which links the second line in one of a variety of ways to the first line-- 'in that', 'so that', 'because', are only some of the possibilities. Moreover, we also have to decide for ourselves which part of the first line is to be emphasized. Here are some possible ways to make the connection:

= I don't have the power to express or display the injustice/cruelty of the relish for wing-fluttering, because my expressive powers deserted me when I lost the use of my chief feather. (How can a bird express its grievances properly without having the use of its wings?)

= The injustice/cruelty of the relish for wing-fluttering is inexpressible-- the injustice and cruelty are such that this taste or 'relish' still persists, even though I long ago lost the power to act on it. (Perhaps it's like the pain of a 'phantom limb'?)

= The injustice/cruelty of the relish for wing-fluttering is inexpressible-- because of this cruel, uncontrollable relish, I've lost the force of my chief feather. (Perhaps I used to flutter it all the time, until its strength gave out before I even started flying?)

Then there's the wordplay of the colloquial 'flew away' [u;R ga))ii] to mean 'vanished', which works as a counterpoint to the standard 'to fly' [u;Rnaa]; the verse encourages to enjoy both the similarities and the differences of the two forms.

This is one of the verses in which the lover/speaker is clearly a bird; for others, see {126,5}.