Ghazal 180, Verse 6


shaah ke hai ;Gusl-e .si;h;hat kii ;xabar
dekhiye kab din phire;N ;hammaam ke

1) there's news of the King's 'bath of recovery'
2) let's see-- when would the fortune/'days' of the bath-house 'turn' [for the better]?


;Gusl-e .si;h;hat : 'Bathing after recovery from sickness'. Platts p.771)


By din phirnaa is meant for fortune/destiny to become favorable. (203)

== Nazm page 203

Bekhud Dihlavi:

He says, 'There is 'fresh news' [;xabar garm] of the King's 'bath of health'. Let's see when the fortune of the bath-house becomes favorable.' (262)

Bekhud Mohani:

There's news that the King's 'bath of health' is about to take place. Let's see when the fortune of the bath-house becomes favorable. (359)


[Ghalib includes the first line, slightly altered, in a letter reporting Bahadur Shah's illness in July 1853 and final recovery in December.] (336)



What would it mean for the fortune of the bath-house to 'turn around'? Perhaps simply that having the King come to bathe, especially on such an auspicious occasion as his recovery from an illness, would in itself constitute a great honor and pleasure for the bath-house.

Or perhaps the auspiciousness of having the King come to bathe would result in other improvements in the bath-house's fortune: perhaps the King or other nobles would endow the bath-house with some kind of improvements in honor of the occasion. Or perhaps even the cosmos itself, the hand of fate and destiny itself, would mark the happy event by decreeing an upswing in the fortune of the bath-house.

And if the fortune of even a lowly and inanimate bath-house is to be so improved by the King's 'bath of recovery', perhaps the King will take the hint and realize that the fortune of the poet who celebrates his recovery could also use a bit of enhancing.

A Persian hammaam , in a painting from c.1556-65: