Ghazal 211, Verse 3x


sho;xii-e mi.zraab-e jaulaa;N aab-yaar-e na;Gmah hai
barg-rez-e naa;xun-e mu:trib bahaar-e na;Gmah hai

1) the mischievousness of the moving plectrum/pick is a waterer of the melody
2) the autumn/'leaf-scattering' of the fingernail of the musician is the springtime of melody


mi.zraab : 'An instrument for striking; the plectrum with which a lute, or sitar, &c., is struck or played'. (Platts p.1043)


jaulaan : 'Wandering up and down, wandering about; moving or springing from side to side... moving round ... coursing'. (Platts p.398)


aab-yaar : 'Waterer, sprinkler'. (Steingass p.2)


barg : 'Leaf ... ; — a musical instrument; melody'. (Platts p.148)


barg-rez : 'The fall of the leaf, autumn, November'. (Steingass p.177)


Running around making much effort [dau;R-dhuup] is called barg-rez . He says that the movement of the plectrum is the irrigation of the melody, and the fingernails of the musician, which run around making much effort on the strings, are the springtime of melody. So to speak, the melody is a garden that is tended in this way.

== Asi, p. 261


barg-rez = 'leaf-fall', autumn.... That is, the mischievousness of the movement of the plectrum waters the garden of melody (that is, when the plectrum moves then melody arises from the strings). And when autumn comes upon the music-playing fingernails (they fall out) then springtime comes to the garden of melody. The meaning is clear, and in the similes there is uniqueness and freshness. And the essence/gist of poetry is nothing except giving similes.

== Zamin, p. 375

Gyan Chand:

The swiftness of the plectrum as it runs over the strings irrigates and tends the melody. The autumn of the musician's fingernails is the springtime of the melody. barg-rez = autumn. Asi has written the meaning of barg-rez as dau;R-dhuup , which is not correct. Between bahaar and barg-rezii there is an opposition. Since from playing the sitar, etc., the fingernail is disturbed/abraded, this has been called the autumn of the fingernail.

== Gyan Chand, p. 378


MUSIC: {10,3}

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 For more on Ghalib's unpublished verses, see the discussion in {4,8x}.

On the distinctiveness of this ghazal, see {211,1}.

A plectrum or pick is used to play stringed instruments, along with the fingers and sometimes fingernails. Until callouses develop, the abraded fingertips can be quite painful. The musician suffers an 'autumn'-- in order to make a verdant 'springtime' of music.