Ghazal 323x, Verse 7


hargiz kisii ke dil me;N nahii;N hai mirii jagah
huu;N mai;N kalaam-e na;Gz vale naa-shaniidah huu;N

1) there's {by no means / never} any place for me in anyone's heart!
2) I am beautiful/wonderful speech/poetry, but I am unheard


hargiz nahii;N : 'Never; — on no account'. (Platts p.1225)


kalaam : 'Word, speech, discourse; a complete sentence or proposition; composition, work'. (Platts p.841)


na;Gz : 'Beautiful; good, excellent; sincere; — swift, nimble; — rare, wonderful; — s.m. Anything rare or wonderful.


shaniidan : 'To hear, listen, attend to; to obey'. (Steingass p.764)

Gyan Chand:

If there would be some extremely fine utterance/idea, but no one would even have heard it, then who will esteem it? I too am like such an unheard speech/poetry. I have no place in anyone's heart-- that is, no one has love/affection for me.

== Gyan Chand, p. 514



For more on Ghalib's unpublished verses, see the discussion in {4,8x}.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

The first line is so sweeping and emphatic that it sets us up to expect something agonistic in the second line-- something to the effect of 'Everybody rejects me!' or 'I reject everybody!'.

But instead the mood seems to be one of melancholy, of a sense of loss. There seems to be cause for sorrow on both sides: the speaker who has such fine things to say would like to be heard, and the people who might make a place for him in their hearts cannot hear him. On this very intuitive reading, we are taking line 2 as a cause, and line 1 as an effect.

But of course, in an 'A,B' verse like this one, we might also take line 1 as a cause, and line 2 as an effect-- and the result is a very different reading. On this reading, everybody rejects the speaker, so that they don't 'hear'-- or 'listen to' (the English distinction has no parallel in Urdu)-- a word he says. The Persian infinitive shaniidan can include 'hear, listen, attend to, obey' (see the definition above). So perhaps the situation is agonistic after all, with people deliberately ignoring the speaker's words or 'tuning him out'. It wouldn't be the first time this had happened to the lover.