Ghazal 352x, Verse 3


ai jaade bah sar-rishtah-e yak reshah daviidan
shiiraazah-e .sad-aabilah juu;N sub;hah baham baa;Ndh

1) oh path, with the cord/relationship of a single fiber-running
2) bind together, as with prayer-beads, the binding-thread of a hundred blisters


sar-rishtah : 'End of a cord or thread, &c.; rope, cord, thread, line; series; connexion, affinity; rule, practice, course, custom, usage, form; rites, ceremonies'. (Platts p.653)


reshah : 'Fibre; filament; nerve; vein (of a leaf)'. (Platts p.612)


daviidan : 'To run; to make haste to serve; to flow; to spring up, be carried high'. (Steingass p.547)


ba-ham : 'Together, one with another, one against another; at once'. (Steingass p.212)


The address is to the path. He says, 'From my one cord, make prayer-beads of a hundred blisters'. Here too, as in the opening-verse, from continuous movement he has made a binding-thread. The verse has no excellence of meaning; it is only a verbal pleasantry.

== Zamin, p. 310

Gyan Chand:

Oh road, on the travellers' feet are a number of blisters. Take up a piece of straw that had been lying in the road and pass it through those blisters such that it would become a binding-thread for them, just exactly the way one strings on a single cord the prepared beads for prayer-beads. When blisters are pierced by straw and thorns it will be painful, and the poet is in search of pain.

== Gyan Chand, p. 319


ISLAMIC: {10,2}

For more on Ghalib's unpublished verses, see the discussion in {4,8x}.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

On the nature of a shiiraazah , see {10,12}.

It's not hard to see why Faruqi denied to this verse alone the approving red check-mark that he gave to the rest of the verses in the ghazal. (I wanted to put it in just for completeness.) It's an example of extreme but slapdash wordplay. Just think of all the long stringy items the verse contains: a path, a cord, a fiber, a binding-thread, a set of prayer-beads. They are in effect thrown into a blender, along with a hundred blisters and a command to 'bind together!'. What could go wrong? Too many threads, competing incoherently to play too few roles, is what. The verse over-rotates.

The result is that the path is asked to 'bind together' with a 'fiber' not beads, but a 'binding-thread of a hundred blisters'. Grammatically, it's quite possible that the thread is made up of the blisters; only context causes us to assume that the binding-thread is to be run through the middle of each blister, to form them into a series like a set of prayer-beads. What a grotesque and disgusting image! It's worse than the vision of a blister as a camel-litter in {352x,1}; that one is at least cheekily amusing. And of course if you actually ran a sharp straw through a hundred blisters, you'd just pop them (painfully) and end up with a great deal of fluid and some fragments of fleshy membrane. Ugh!

For an instance of daviidan reshah , see {145,9x}.