Bu-e-gul, nala-e-dil, dood-e-chiragh-e-mehfil
Fragrance of flowers, lamentations of dejected hearts, or smoke of your chamber’s lamps
Jo teri bazm se nikla so parishaN nikla
Anyone pushed away from your presence, ejects diffused
Bu= Smell, fragrance Gul= rose, flower Bu-e-gul fragrance of flower Nala= lamentation, groan, moan Nala-e-dil= lamentation of heart Dood= Smoke Chiragh=lamp Dood-e-chiragh-e-mehfil= smoke from the lamps of party room, or assembly room. Bazm= Party, assembly ParishaN= diffused, disturbed, worried Nikla= came out
This is the 3rd verse of Ghalib’s 6th ghazal. This ghazal is one of the most celebrated ghazals of Ghalib. It has been sung among others, by the top singers like Rafi, Talat-Asha, & Lata. To listen each of them, click here.
Meaning: In Urdu Ghazals, beloved is mainly portrayed in a glamorous setting similar to Oscar award or Beauty Pageant. She is surrounded by souls yearning to catch her eye and her glimpse. Her assembly room, her Bazm, is lit with oil lamps and candles and she is bestowing goblet of wine to the chosen ones, pouring one by one from Surahi, with her silvery hands. When lovers see goblet in her hand, they feel she is holding sun or moon, and that her fiery body makes even sun, moon, lamps, or candles pale in comparison. Those hearts, who can’t get close to her or win a goblet of wine–the jam-e-mai, moan their bad luck.
In this She’r, Ghalib has skillfully exploited word ParishaN which actually means diffused, but in common parlance also means worried, or troubled.
Smells of flowers, lamentation of dejected hearts, and smoke from lamps have one quality in common, namely diffusion. Ghalib has exploited this common quality and has said: Oh my darling! May be fragrance of flowers which you like the best, or lamentation of hearts, or smoke from the lamps that burns in your assembly room, all came to your Bazm with great expectations, but they all left diffused, troubled, disturbed, and worried. This is the proof that you are merciless.
In other words, in your assembly no one wins, fragrance is dear to your heart yet the fragrance that emerges out of flowers get scattered and leave your room ParishaN; moaning of heart wanders all over; smoke from the lamps get chopped in to atoms; i.e. whoever exits your assembly looks troubled, disturbed, and worried.
Look at Ghalib’s choice words. He uses two different words “Mehfil” and “Bazm” for assembly. He does not use the same word twice in one Sh’er. Yes, “Nikla” is used twice; but, it is in a verb form. All words rhyme beautifully.
In India I had a boss named Mr. Phadke. He was a terror. Any one who was summoned to his chamber, on exit looked depressed, worried, and in pain. I used to say: “Jo teri bazm se nikla, so prishaN nikla!”
Taba-Tabaee: To leave your presence is a great pain.
Bekhud: As such fragrance, lamentations, and smoke from a lamp, always diffuse; but, when they are forced out from your presence, they don’t like it! While leaving, they look troubled, disturbed and worried.
Ishq-e-haqiqi or higher level of love:
When we come to this world, we have great expectations and look forward to closeness and mercy of almighty; but when we leave, we are “ParishaN”, dejected, and worried. This also happens to the most pious people, who God holds dear; just as what happens to Bu-e-gul in beloved’s Bazm. God! Where is thy mercy?
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ZY1UDMyMikk ghazal (Muhammad Rafi)