Ghazal 167, Verse 7


al-l;aah re terii tundii-e ;xuu jis ke biim se
ajzaa-e naalah dil me;N mire rizq-e ham hu))e

1) oh God, your sharpness/violence of temperament! --from the fear/terror of which
2) the parts of the lament in my heart became sustenance/food for each other


tundii : 'Swiftness; briskness, activity; sharpness, severity, acrimony; impetuosity, violence, fierceness, fury'. (Platts p.339)


biim : 'Fear, terror, dread; danger, risk'. (Platts p.211)


rizq : 'Means of subsistence or support, subsistence, food, daily bread; subsistence money, allowance, pension'. (Platts p.591)


The way that fear makes the blood cold, in the same way the lament, from fear of her being out of temper, didn't reach to the lip. It was in the heart, it became dissipated in the heart itself. This dissolution the author has presented in the phrase that one part of it devoured another part. (186)

== Nazm page 186

Bekhud Dihlavi:

He says, from fear of your ill temper, the lament could never come forth, the lament of the heart was dissolved in the heart itself. And one part of it dined on another, the way that out of fear, blood dries up in the veins. (242)

Bekhud Mohani:

Is there any limit to your ill temper? From fear of it, pieces of my heart's lament became sustenance for each other. That is, they couldn't come from the heart to the lip. They attained oblivion right there. (326)


FOOD: {6,4}

Why did the pieces of the lament become 'sustenance'-- the fancy Arabic word rizq -- for each other? Perhaps because the waves of the lament devoured each other by cancelling each other out, like echoes or ripples thrown back and recoiling on their own wake, leaving just a brief bit of choppy air or water behind them.

Or, more poignantly, because none of them could hope for any 'sustenance' from the harsh, cruel beloved, so they had no choice but to find nourishment from each other. If this mutual support was also a form of mutual self-destruction (did they devour each other?), that too was appropriate to the actual 'terror' of the beloved's coldness and cruelty that they felt.

The lover seems to be exclaiming, adjuring God to witness the extent of his suffering. But the more piquant possibility also opens up-- might God also be the addressee? One of God's proverbial 99 Names, after all, is ul-razzaaq , the 'Food-giver'.

Here the helpless, fearful laments feed on each other, and seem doomed to decline into impotence; for a depiction of the lover's inner grief as much more ominously powerful, compare {6,6}.