Sunday, September 22, 2013


In this text we will bring to the readers one of the most famous marsiyas of Meer Anees. Not only is it one of the most beautiful works of Meer Anees, it is full of metaphors, similes, allegories and many other poetical figures of speech. Some of the best lines have been composed in this long marsiya.
In fact, commentators have argued about it being a collection of three separate marsiyas. This opinion is based on the fact that there are three MATLAs in the marsiya. MATLA is the first stanza with which a marsiya begins.

The basic constituent parts of a marsiya are as follows:

MATLA the opening stanza
Chehra lit. face, it is the introduction
Saraapa the heros personage and its description, could be brief, could also be very detailed including his horse, his dress, his armour and his weapons
Rukhsat the hero departs under the weeping and wailing of his family members
Aamad  -  the arrival of the hero in the battlefield
Rajaz  -  the hero introduces himself and recites war-poetry. It was an old custom in Arabia that when a soldier would come to the battlefield he would recite his own poetry, mostly composed on the spot. It was a part of the psychological warfare in trying to subdue the opponent at the very start
JANG  - the battle-scene, exchange of blows, attacks, defense etc.
SHAHADAT martyrdom, the basic ingredient of the marsiya is that the hero is all good, however in this confrontation of good and evil, the hero fights bravely, but is slain in the most cowardly manner by his opponents because of being outnumbered, thirsty and overwhelmed with grief. This is the high point of the marsiya.
BAYN the weeping and wailing and the lamentation of the survivors in the family and friends.
 The MATLA is very significant in that it sets the tone of the marsiya and the poet actually gives the whole mood and the subject of the marsiya in that stanza.
Every stanza of the marsiya consists of six lines, the first four rhyming on one pattern, and the last two on a different pattern. The last two lines are called the BAYT, the whole stanza is called  a BAND (pronounced as FUND).
Meer Anees in unique in composing the BAYT in each stanza in that it usually follows from the fourth line and it becomes a continuous story. Sometimes, in fact, most of the time, there is great art of word-play displayed in that connection of the BAYT to the first four lines.

Now, because this marsiya begins with a MATLA in which Meer Anees actually prays to God for his success in his venture of writing poetry, many commentators have argued that it is his very first marsiya. On the other hand, the poetry is so perfect and so expertly composed that others have argued that the marsiya must be dated to a time when Meer Aneess art must have matured fully.

It is indeed a beautiful piece of poetry. However, there is one commentator named Aasi Rampuri who has found many faults in it, both of language and grammar as well as of psychological situations. I will quote from Aasi Rampuri as I go along writing the commentary with the translation.
The translation that you will see in this text was done by Syed Ghulam Abbas of Jmia Millia, Karachi , Pakistan . The commentary is mine in addition to other commentators views as I will quote.
Syed Ghulam Abbas has done a wonderful job in translating the marsiya. It was hard work. The rhyming pattern of a marsiya is  aaaacc. Syed Ghulam Abbas has changed the pattern to aabbcc.  In many places, he has sacrificed accuracy over fulfilling the needs of rhyming. I have inserted notes in all those places to make things clear.
 The Marsiya begins with a prayer to God, it then leads into supplications to the Prophet of Islam and to Imam Ali. The poet then complains about the lack of support from the community, there is no appreciation for his work. He then resigns himself to something else. And that something else is a very significant element in Meer Aneess poetry. Meer Anees makes that point in stanza number 12.
The marsiya then proceeds to describe the scene of the birth of Imam Husayn. The poet then describes the meanings of the name of HUSAYN. That also is a very interesting part and is unique. We will bring that in part II of this commentary. And further parts will follow in later texts.
 The attachment to this post contains the selected stanzas in NATAALEEQ.
I have yet to find a way to insert the nastaaleeq text (built on INPAGE) into an e-mail so that it can be transmitted through the INTERNET. So far all my efforts have failed and all I get after sending the mail is a blank block.
          OK., so the marsiya begins:

Ya  rab caman-e-nazm ko gulzaare-eram kar
Ay abr-e-karam xushk zeraat pa karam kar
Tu fayz ka mabda hai tawajjuh koi dam kar
Gumnaam ko ejaaz bayaboN maiN raqam kar
Jab tak yeh camak mehr ke partaw se na jaae
Iqleem-e-suxan  meri qalam raw se na jaae                            (1)

O God! Make my bouquet of poetry bloom into a heavenly bower,
Thou art all rain, and I am a parched crop, soak me with water,
Thou art all Grace, shower me with Thy grace for a while
O God! I am all mute, give me a tongue, fluent and agile,
So long as the sun retains its luminous luster,
My pen be blessed with a serene and sublime grandeur.

NOTE: The word caman should be translated as a bower not a bouquet. The true translation of the last line will be dont let the kingdom of diction go out of my control. There is great word-play between the words IQLEEM-E-SUXAN (THE KINGDOM OF DICTION) and QALAM-RAW.  Qalam means a pen in Arabic, it is the instrument of writing. It is that instrument which produces the actual writing. QALAM-RAW literally means THE LINE OF THE PEN, metaphorically it means the domain of a king.

T `areef main cashme ko samandar se mila duN
Qatre ko jo duN aab to gawhar se milaa duN
Zarre ki camak mehr-e-munawwar se milaa duN
xaaroN ko nazaakat maiN  gul-e-tar se miaa duN
guldasta-e-m `ana ko na-e Dhang se baandhuN
ek phool ka mazmuN ho to saw rang se baandhuN                  (4)

I have the power to paint a rivulet, bigger than a sea profound,
And roll a drop of water, into a pearl renowned,
And lend such grace to a particle of dust, so as to vie with sun,
And the thorns look as comely as a rose, their ruggedness shun,
I give new shape and colour to the realm of thought,
And that too, with manifold notions fraught.

NOTE: The more accurate translation will be: May I have the power to ..
This stanza is a typical example of Meer Aneess mastery in composing the BAYT.
There is word-play in aab.   It literally means water but here it is used for the meaning of glitter or shine. Of course, each qatra (a drop) is made out of water. There is a natural connection between the words gul-e-tar (fresh flowers), the ending words in line number 4, and guldasta (a bouquet), the very first word in line number 5. This is a beautiful stanza and one of the most famous ones in Meer Anees collection. The admirers of Meer Anees usually know this by heart.  The term realm of thought does not fully convey the meaning here. What the poet is saying is that he would like to express old ideas into a totally new a fresh garb. And all indications  are that Meer Aneess prayers were fully granted.

Aa-uN  taraf-e-razm abhi choR ke gar bazm,
Xaybar ki xabar laa-e meri tab`e ulul-`azm,
Qat`e sar-e-`ada ka iraada ho jo bil-jazm,
Dikhlaa-e yaheeN sab ko zabaN m`arka-e razm,
Jal jaa-en `adu aag bhaRakti nazar aa-e
Talwaar pa talwaar camakti nazar aa-e               (6)

After the pageantry of peace, if battle I survey,
Khaybar alone, my set disposition convey,
The enemies are slain, in quick succession,
And in the battle-field, they are on the run,
In the heat of battle, all foes are burnt,
With the slash of swords, a new experience they have learnt.

NOTE: There is a phonetic effect between the words RAZM (battle) and BAZM (an assembly of poets) and a message in the meanings. Both actions (writing poetry and soldiers fighting in formation) require discipline, organization and a concerted effort for success. The last line is not an accurate translation. The English version was composed to fulfill the need of the rhyming pattern.

Taa-eed ka hangaam hai, ya Haidar-e-Safdar,
Imdaad tera kaam hai ya Haider-e-Safdar,
Tu saahab-e-ikraam hai ya Haidar-e-Safdar
Teraa hi karam `aam hai ya Haidar-e-Safdar
Tanha tere iqbaal se shamsheer bakaf  huN
Sab aik taraf jam`a haiN mayn aik taraf  huN      (7)

Your help is most genuinely sought, O Haidar the Valiant!
Relief to men you have always wrought,  O Haidar the Valiant!
You are highly gracious and compassionate,  O Haidar the Valiant!
Your benediction is pure and chaste, O Haidar the Valiant!
With faith in you, I charge the world with a sword,
I am all alone, and against me a horde.

NOTE: As a matter of faith, the followers of Imam Ali traditionally call for help from him with a cry of YA LAI MADAD.  This stanza is based on that basic faith and tradition. What is interesting here is the fact that the poet invokes the name of Imam Ali before he calls on the Prophet of Islam for blessings. That is against the protocol. The Prophets name should have come first. The only reason I can cite here is this. The poet moved from the description of BAZM to RAZM. That naturally brought him to the mention of Khyber in the previous stanza. That was a famous battle in early Islamic history in which Imam Ali went and fought single-handedly and he was victorious. In that expedition, Imam Ali was not accompanied in the Muslim party. The Prophet called him specially after failure after failure for twenty days. So that episode is associated with the Prophet Calling Ali for Help..  This in Arabic is known as  NAAD-E  ALI.

The BAYT has not been translated fully. SHAMSHEER BAKAF HONA actually means to be set in an struggle. It does not necessarily mean to fight in the battlefield with sword in hand. Meer Anees is actually describing his own situation in the field of poetry. He was born and raised in Fayzabad. He grew up in that city and his marsiya poetry was introduced in that city. While in Lucknow Meer Zameer had already set the standards of Urdu Marsiya. His able disciple, Mirza Dabeer, was already well recognized in marsiya poetry in Lucknow . There was a sizable following of Mirza Dabeer in Lucknow by the time Anees showed up in Lucknow . Dabeer also had the ear of the king. In that situation Meer Anees had to establish himself. He had to create a following for himself, he had to find friends who would recognize and appreciate his poetry as compared to the established reputation of  Mirza Dabeer. It is that early struggle in establishing himself among the elite of the society that Meer Anees is describing here.

I have written this passage after having read Professor Nayyar Masoods work titled: Marka-e Anees-o-Dabeer, Karachi , 2000. If this information is factual then I would say that this marsiya belongs to the time when Meer Anees came to Lucknow from Fayzabad, and that must be around the time that he was in his 30s(circa 1840s).

XwahaN nahiN   yaqoot-e-suxan ka koi  go aaj,
Hai aap ki sarkaar to ya saahab-e-m`eraaj,
Ay baa`is-e-eejaad-e-jahaaN, xalq ke sartaaj
Ho jaa-egaa dam bhar main Ghani banda-e muhtaaj
Ummeed isi ghar ki, waseela isi ghar ka,
Dawlat yahee meri, yahee tawsha hai safar ka.              (12)

If lovers of letters dont exist, no matter,
To me your matter most, you Holy Prophet, youre all and ever,
The Almighty God created the universe but for you,
And none can fill my coffers, better except you,
You and the people of your house, are the source of exultation,
In your adoration lies the path of my salvation.

NOTE: This is the most profound thought that Meer Anees expresses here. IN the first line he complains of people not being able to appreciate his poetry. He then turns to the Prophet of Islam in prayer. Actually Anees traces the history of Arabic poetic tradition here and gives an alternative reason for writing poetry. In Arabia , poets used to compose QASEEDA in praise of a tribe, a tribal leader or a prince. For that they would be awarded handsomely. Many poets were known to have become fairly rich in the sixth and seventh century Arabia due to their power of poetry.  That tradition continued in Iran . Firdausi composed his famous Shahnameh in praise of kings with a promise from Mahmood Ghaznawi (981-1030,  King of  Ghazni from 1002 to his death) that he would be rewarded with one gold coin for each line of poetry that he composed. He returned with a long poem consisting of 120,000 lines. Ghaznawi was a greedy person and it was hard for him to part with that much money. He rewarded Firdausi with only 120,000 silver coins. Firadausi was outraged and composed a very disparaging limerick for Mahmood Ghaznawi in which he labeled him as being of low birth.

Meer Anees has all that history before him. He says that his poetry is not for worldly fame and wealth, it is all in the service of Muhammad and Aal-e-Muhammad, because that is what will guarantee his salvation in the other world. That is the firm belief Meer Anees has under which he has produced his work. We will see as we go along that Meer Anees would bring out other elements of his faith, in his poetry, from time to time.

The third line of the stanza alludes to a hadeeth. It is actually a Hadeeth-e-Qudsis ( a revelation brought by the Archangel Gabriel that is not a part of the Quran): LAW LAKA LAMA KHLATU (A)L-AFLAAK --- If you (the Prophet of Islam) were not there, I (Allah) would not have created the Heavens.

MayN  kiya huN, mri  tab`a  hai kiya, ay shah-e-zi-shaN
Hassaano-Farazdaq haiN yaN `aajiz-o-hairaN
Sharmindah zamaane se gaye waa-el-O-SahbaN
Kiya madh kaf-e-xaak se ho noor-e-xuda ki
Luknat yaheeN karti haiN zabaaneN fusaha ki               (13)

O king of kings!  I am nothing, my mind is like a fen,
Bewildered are, not only Hassaan and Farazdaq, but all such men,
Even Waa-el and Sahbaan went all ashamed,
Youre incomprehensible, learned feel but mentally maimed,
You are the Celestial Light, and I mere dust, I cant adore,
The best tongues are laden with crust, I cant adore.

NOTE: This is a continuation of the thought process that began in the previous stanza. After having expressed his excellent abilities in composing poetry in the form of a prayer
In the first six stanzas of the marsiya, suddenly Meer Anees turns to being modest. That praise which the poet lists for himself is called TA`ALLEE, and this is INKISAAR.

He compares himself with the four most well-known poets of 6th-7th century Arabia and says that if they could not fulfill the due praise to you (The Prophet) then what more can he (Anees) do.

ShabaN ki hai taareex-e-som roz-e-wiladat
Awr hai dahum-e-maah-e-`aza yawm-e-shahaadat,
donoN maiN bahar haal hai tahseel-e-s`aadat,
wo bhi `amal-e-xayr hai, ye bhi hai `ibaadat,
maddah huN  kiya kuch nahiN is ghar se milaa hai
kawsar hai sila iska, bihisht uska sila hai.             (18)

The third Sh`abaan is the propitious birthday,
And tenth Muharram is the martyrdom day,
Both the events are great, and both celebrity,
One is worship the other an act of piety,
I�m the adorer, because this house has made me richer and richer,
For one the reward is Kawsar, and Paradise for the other.

NOTE: With this stanza the poet begins with the life story of Imam Husayn, who is the hero of his poetry. All Urdu marsiya revolves round the story of the Tragedy of Karbala. Husayn, the beloved grandson of the Prophet was forced by Yazeed, the ruler of the time, to acknowledge him as the Khaleefa. Husayn refused, and in three days of hunger and thirst he and his 72 companions were surrounded by a huge Damascene army at the plane of Karbala . Husayn and his companions gave fierce resistance, but greatly outnumbered they were all butchered on the 10th of Muharram in the 61st year of Hijra (October 680 AD) in a day-long battle. His women and children were taken prisoners and presented to Yazeed in Damascus. I have written a 24 part series about the story of Karbala that can be viewed at the following URL.
I also have published a book titled: THE TRAGEDY OF KARBALA, 1992, Princeton.

Haan ay falak-e-peer na-e sar se jawaN ho,
Ay maah-e-shab-e-caar dahum noor fishaN ho,
Ay zulmat-e-gham  deeda-e      `aalam se nihaN ho,
Ay roshni-ye subh-e-shab-e-`Eed   `ayaN  ho

Shaadi hai wilaadat ki yadullaah ke ghar main
Xursheed utarta hai shahenshaah ke ghar main             (19)

O antiquated canopy!   Wear a new garment,
O full and mature moon!  Shed a lusture resplendent,
O gloom of corrosive suffering!  Be banished for good,
O lovely light of morn!  Lift merrily thy hood,
The joyous birth occurs, in the abode of Ali,
The sun itself descends to the palace kingly.

NOTE: This stanza can be taken as a new MATL�A for the marsiya.

Ay shams-o-Qamar, awr qamar hota hai payda,
Naxl-e-caman-e-diN ka samar hota hai payda,
Maxduma-e-`aalam ka  pisar hota hai payda,
Jo `arsh ki zaw hai, wo guhar hota hai payda,
Har jism main jaN aati hai mazkoor se jis ke,
Naw noor-e-xuda hoN  ge `ayaN noor se jis ke.               (20)

O Sun, O Moon!  A new moon is born,
The rewarding fruit of faith is born,
The son of the Lady of Universe is born,
The most lustrous light of empyrean is born,
Each soul thus feels invigorating delight,
Nine luminaries, shall indeed follow this light.

NOTE:The term �Ahlul-Bayt� consists of fourteen persons, the Prophet of Islam, his daughter Fatima Zahra and twelve Imams, who are Imam Ali, his eldest son Hasan and his second son Husayn, and nine others in the line of Husayn. The last line refers to that fact.

Ay Yathrib-O-Batha!  t�re waali ki hai aamad,
Lai rutba-e-`aala shah-e�`aali ki hai aamad,
`Aalam ki taGheeri pa bahaali ki hai aamad,
Kahtai haiN caman  maah-e-jalaali ki hai aamad,
Ye xaana-e-k`aba ke mubaahaat ke din haiN
Y`aqoob ki Yusuf se mulaaqaak ke din haiN.                   (22)

O Yathrib and Batha!  Thy liege and lord is coming,
Be complacent, thy protector and guard is coming,
With this advent, the world is sure to change for better,
Of a new tone and tenor, he is said to be the setter,
Verily are these days of K`aba�s rejoicing,
And with unhappy Jacob, lovely Joseph�s meeting.

NOTE: There is definitely a problem in the grammar in the first line. Aasi Rampuri has taken serious exception to this egregious slip on Meer Anees�s part.  Yathrib-o-Bat-ha means Madinah and Makkah. That makes two. The pronoun  �tere� is singular.  I agree with Aasi�s objection here. However, I don�t think this is a slip up on Meer Anees�s part. It looks like a blooper during the transcribing. If we read the line as follows, the defect will disappear:

Ay waadiy-e Batha tere waali ki hai aamad

This is very likely because Madinah has been mentioned separately in the following stanza.

Aasi also has objected on the use of the word �TAGHEERI.�  This appears to be an Arabic word. The root is GH-Y-R, which means �to change.�  But actually no Arabic word exists with that spelling. There is a word TAGHAYYUR and another word TAGHYIIR. Meer Anees has formed an abstract noun by adding a �y� to the wecond word, very much like we have SABZI from SABZ; he has used it in the meaning of change. He has effectively coined an Urdu word from an Arabic root.  I tend to disagree with Aaasi on this point. A master poet does have the right to create new words. After all, the word �ACCOMODATION� was unknown in the English language before Shakespeare.

The metaphor of Yusuf meeting with Y`aqoob after the long separation, would be employed by Meer Anees frequently as a symbol of a joyous incident. The story is found both in the Old Testament (Genesis 47: 13 and 48) as well as in the Qur�an (Sura Yusuf, Chapter 12).
Ay arz-e-Madinah tujhe fawq ab hai falak par,
Rawnaq jo sama par hai wo ab hogi samak par,
Xursheed mila taira sitara hai camak par,
Sadqe gul-e-jannat tere phoolo.N ki mahak par,            
Par jis pa farishto.N ke biche.N farsh wahi hai,
Jis xaak pa ho noor-e-xuda `arsh wahi hai.                    (23)

O land of Madinah , thou art nobler, and higher than heaven,
The earth shall now share the splendour of Heaven,
More than the sun, thy star is refulgent,
More than a rose of Heaven, thy flower is fragrant,
The pavement is that, where angels their wings spread,
And that is the empyrean, wherefrom the Divine Light is shed.

Note: The metaphor of SAMA-O-SAMAK (the sky and the fish) is derived from older mythology in India and in Iran . In India , the ancient belief was that the world was resting on the horn of a cow. (Meer Anees would use the expression of GAW-E-ZAMIN also). In another belief it was said that the earth is resting on the back of a fish. That is the very bottom of the universe and the top is the sky.

Ya xatm-e-rusul, gawhar-e-maqsood mubaarak,
Ya noor-e-xuda ,  rahmat-e-m`abood mubaarak,
Ya shah-e-Najaf, shaadiy-e-mawlood mubaarak,
Ya khayr-e-nisa Akhtar-e-mas`ood mubaarak,
Rawnaq ho sada, noor dubaala rahai ghar mai.N
Is maah-e-dohafta ka ujaala rahai ghar mai.N              (24)

 O Last of the prophets ! Felicitations for the coveted gem,
O Light of God !   felicitations for the divine emblem,
O King of Najaf, for the happy birth, congratulations,
O Blessed lady, this son of yours, is a propitious omen,
May this house be blessed, with an eternal light,
May this eternal light, be blessed with perennial delight.

Qurbaan-e-shab-e-juma-e-Sh`abaan-e-xush anjaam,
Payda huwa jis shab ko Muhammad ka gul-andaam,
Qaa-em huwa di.N awr baRhee rawnaq-e-Islam,
Ham palla-e-subh-e-shab-e-m`eraaj thi wo shaam,
Xursheed ka ijlaal-o-sharaf  badr se poocho,
Kiya qadr thi us shab ki shab-eqadr se pooch.                (26)

How soul-stirring was that Friday night,
When Muhammad�s grandson was born, to all men�s delight,
Religion thrived, the glory of Islam became more splendent,
That evening rivaled with the Night of Ascent,
How radiant was the sun, speak O full moon-light,
How graceful was the night, speak O Great Night.

NOTE: Aasi has taken exception to the spelling of the word JUMA (Friday ) in this line. In the original  Arabic the MEEM has a PESH on it, so the correct transliteration will be JUMU�A. I disagree with this objection. In Urdu, JUM�A is in extensive use and except for those who read the Qur�an regularly, the Urdu speakers hardly know the original spelling of the word. Aasi also objects to the expression �MUHAMMAD KA GUL-ANDAAM.� He says: If the child is gul-andaam, then he is as such (meaning delicate), the genitive MUHAMMAD KA GUL-ANDAAM does not carry any meaning. I think this is a frivolous objection.

The stanza ends with a beautiful BAYT. The repetition of the words QADR and SHAB have really added to the beauty of the expression.

Rawshan tha Madeene ka hare k kooca-o-bazaar,
Jo raah thi xushbu, jo muhalla that wo gulzaar,
Khole-hu-e tha aahu-e-shab naafa-e-taataar,
M�aloom yeh hota that ki phooloN ka hai ambaar,
garduN ko bhi ek rashk tha zeenat pa zamiN ki
har ghar main hawa aati thi firdaws-e-bariN ki             (28)

Flooded with light was Madina�s each corner and nook,
Fragrant was each way, and every borough gave a new look,
Odorous was that night, like a Tatarian deer, full of musk,
Or that, it looked like a heap of fragrant damask,
Never was the earth so majestic, nor was the sky so envy laden,
Blessed was each hearth and home, with an azure from Heaven.

NOTE: The third line is a typical Aneesian metaphor. The English translation has failed to render the beauty of the Urdu expression.

TheeN Fatima bechayn udhar dad-e-shikam se,
MuNh faq that awr aaNsu thai rawaN deeda-e-nam se,
Wabasta thi raahat jo usi bibi ke dam se,
Muztar thai Ali bint-e-payambar ke alam se,
Aaraam tha ek dam na shah-e-qila shikan ko,
Phirte thai lagaa-e huwe chati se Hasan ko                    (29)

The agony made Fatima restless with pain,
Her face paled, and gushed out tears in train,
As the lady was, the house-comforter,
Her sufferings made Ali all the sadder,
Distressed he felt, each moment his heart smirched,
He sauntered to and from, with Hasan into his lap perched.

NOTE: This is a very significant stanza in that Meer Anees brings his readers back to the real world. The Prophet, his daughter Fatima Zahra and all the Imams are the manifestation of the Divine Light on this earth. However, they are, for all practical purposes, biological human beings, they suffer from pain, their birth is natural and they feel happiness and pleasure. There is no miracle here and no supernatural happenings.

This is the genius of Meer Anees. Good poetry is supposed to take its readers into a surreal world, a world of imagination, a world of superhuman and super-beings. Here the poetry actually brings its readers back to earth --- this is the realism in Islamic philosophy and theology that Meer Anees has expressed very successfully.

Karte thai du�a baadsha-e Yathrab-o-Bat-ha,
Raahim hai teri zaat-e-muqaddas, mere Mawla,
Zahra hai Kaneez awr mera bcca tera banda,
Aasaan kar ay baar-e-Khuda, mushkil-e-Zahra,
Nadaar hai awr faqa kash-o-zaar-o-haziN hai,
Maadar bhi tahsaffi ke liye paas nahiN hai                    (30)

The King of Yathrib, thus prayed God Almighty,
Most Merciful, Most sanctified are Thou, O Deity,
Zahra is Thy maid, and my son a slave,
Soothe her sufferings, in her difficult way ease pave,
She is in fact poor, sorrow-stricken and starving,
To comfort her sad heart, her mother isn�t surviving.

NOTE: That thought process from the previous stanza continues in this one. The Prophet prays to Allah that may He make this birth easy for the mother. In that moment of pain of her daughter, very psychologically, the Prophet is seen remembering his late beloved wife Kahdeeja, the mother of that daughter for whom he is praying.

Naagaah dar-e-Hujra huwa  matla�e anwaar,
Dikhlaane lagai noor-e-tajalli dar-o-deewar,
Asma ne Ali sai kaha yeh dawR k ek baar,
Farzand mubaarak tumheN, Ya haydar-e-karraar,
Ispand karo Fatima ke maah-e-jabiN par
Farzand nahiN caand yeh utra hai zamiN par                         (31)

Then suddenly, the chamber was flooded with light,
Brightened was each object, very like a sprite,
Rushed Asma to Ali, with tidings of joy,
I greet you Sir, O Haydar !  For a lovely boy,
For the well-being of Fatima �s child, make the best of offering,
Verily the moon has descended, not a child so darling.

NOTE: Asma bint-e-Umays is the wife of Ali�s brother J�afar. Her father Umays was an old companion of the Prophet. His two daughters, Asma and her sister, were very friendly with the women of the household of the Prophet, particularly with Fatima Zahra, and Asma would help out Fatima Zahra in domestic chores.

Dekha nahiN is tarha ka cehra kabhi pyara,
Naqsha hai Muhammad se shahinshaah ka saara,
Maathai pa camakta hai jalaalat ka sitaara,
Allah ne is ghar mai.N  `ajab caand utaara,
Tasweer-e-Rasool-e-`Arabi dekh rahai hai.N,
AaNkho.N ki hai gardish ke Nabi dekh rahai hai.N                           (32)

Never have I seen a fairer face,
He is in the image of the Prophet, and all his grace,
His forehead is lit, with a majestic light,
God has sent moon, in the form of a child  all bright,
Is this the personage of the Prophet, that we are beholding,
Is it an illusion or the visage of the Prophet, that we are beholding.

Muzdah yeh sunaa Ahmad-e-Muxtaar ne jis dam,
Bas shukr ke sajdai ko jhukai qibla-e-aalam,
Aa-e taraf-e-khaana-e-Zahra xush-o-xurram,
Farmaya mubaarak pisar,  ay saaniy-e-Maryam,
Cehra mujhe dikhlaado mere noor-e-nazar ka
TukRA hai yeh farzand, Muhammad ke jigar ka                       (33)

To Ahmad, as soon as the happy news was communicated,
In gratitude to God, he at once prostrated,
He hastened to the abode of Zahra, jubilantly happy,
And spake to her, �Heartiest greetings for the son, O Mary!�
I want to see my darling, the golden beam of my own light,
He is my son, my being�s part, and my heart�s delight.

NOTE: There are many names by which Fatima Zahra has been addressed in the hadeeth literature. One of them is Saaniy-e-Maryam, or the second Mary. In one hadeeth the Prophet has said, the most glorious women in human history are four: Maryam mother of Jesus, Aasiya the woman of  the Pharaoh (who brought up Moses as a child),  Khdeeja bint Khuwaylad and Fatima Zahra.

Ki `Arz yeh Asma ne ke ay xaasa-e daawar,
Nahlaa lu.N to lai aa�u.N usai hujrai se baahar,
Irshaad kiya Ahmad-e-Muxtaar ne haNs kar,
Lai aa ke nawaasa hai mera Tahir-o-At-har,
Is caand ko taaj-e-sar-e-aflaak kiya hai,
Yeh wo hai Xuda ne jise xud paak kiya hai                               (34)

Thus entreated Asma, �O God�s Messenger!�
May I wash the babe, before taking him out of the chamber,
The Prophet laughed and uttered in haste,
Fetch the child for he is pure and chaste,
This moon of mine shall illumine the highest of heaven,
God himself has sanctified him, so as to enliven.

Note: this is a reference to the story of Kisa as associated with the revelation of the Qur�anic verse 33:33 in which Allah says: O Ahlul-Bayt, Allah intends to cleans you thoroughly and keep you away from all RIJS.  The book of hadeeth named JAMI OF TIRMIZI has preserved the story among many other collections.

May.N is se hu.N awr mujh se hai yeh tu nai.N maahir,
Yeh noor-e-ilaahi hai yeh hai tayyab-o-taahir,
Asraar jo maxfi hai.N wo ab ho.N-ai.Nge zaahir,
Ye aayat-e-iima.N hai ye hai hujjat-e-baahir,
baRh kar madad-e-sayyad-e-lawlaak karega,
kuffaar ke qisse ko yhai paak karega                                        (35)

I am unto him, he is unto me, it is an established fact
He is verily the Light of God, he is sacred and sacrosanct,
The hidden secrets of Nature, shall now find a trace,
He is the sign of Faith, he is the Divine Grace,
This child will help me in my tasks,
And undo for good the infidel�s mask.

NOTE: The first line is a rendition of a hadeeth: HUSAYNO MINNI WA NA MIN AL-HUSAYN. (Husayn is from me and I am from Husayn). The meaning relates to the story of Karbala in which Husayn  lays his life for the preservation of Islam, which was the life-mission of the Prophet. The last line alludes to the same event.

Jis dam ye xabar muxbir-e-saadiq ne sunaa�ii,
Asma use ek paarca-e narm pa laa�ii
Bu us gul-e-taazah ki Muhammad ne jo paa�ii
HaNsne lage surxi  rux-e-pur noor pa aa�ii
MuNh caand sa dekhaa jo Rasool-e-`Arabi ne
Liptaa liya chaati se nwaase ko nabi ne                         (36)

The Prophet broke the tidings, at that moment,
Asma brought the child, on a piece of soft parchment,
The sweet odour of the newly-blossomed flower,
Made the Messenger of God more joyful and happier,
Then the Prophet glanced at the babe�s lovely face,
And to his bosom, lay his grandson, for an embrace.

Jaan aaga�ii Y`aqoob ne Yusuf ko jo paaya,
Qur�aa.N ki tarah rehl-e-dozaanu pa biThaaya
MuNh malnai lage muNh se bahut pyar jo aaya
Bosai liye awr haaNthoN ko aaNkhoN se lagaaya
Dil hil gaya, ki jab ke nazar seena-o-sar par,
Cooma jo gala cal ga�.i talwar jigar par.                      (37)

After retrieving Joseph, Jacob�s heart had surged with glee,
The Prophet, like the Qur�an on a stand, put the child on his knee,
Then sucking the infant�s lips, the Messenger caressed his palms,
He fondled the babe long, indeed imprinting kisses on his arms,
When the babe�s chest was sighted, the Prophet felt his body minced,
A kiss on the throat of the child, made Muhammad�s heart winced.

Note: Once again the metaphor of Yusuf meeting with Y`aqoob has been employed. The last line alludes to the story of Karbala of which, knowledge had come to the Prophet on Allah�s command. We will hear more details of this in later stanzas.

Josh aaya tha ronai ka magar thaam ke riqqat,
Is kaan mai.N farmaa�ii aza.N, us mai.N iqaamat,
Haydar se ye farmaaya ke ay shah-e-wilaayat,
Kyo.N tum neb hi dekhi m�re farzand ki soorat?
Pur noor hai ghar tum ko milaa hai qamar aysa,
Dunya mai.N kisi ne nahi.N paaya pisar aysa.                         (38)

He did overcome his grief,  although a little he wept,
Then made a prayer call in the right ear, and then in the left,
Thus speaking to Haydar, the Holy Prophet did a question set,
O saint of saints!  Haven�t you sighted my son as yet?
With this fount of light, your house is indeed luster-packed,
Verily, in the whole world, your son is peerless and unmatched.

NOTE: This is an established tradition among Muslims that when a new child is born, one of the elders of the family says Azan in the right ear and Iqamat in the left ear of the infant.
Kyo.N kar na ho, tum sa padar awr Fatima si maa.N,
Do shams-o-qamar ka hai ye ek nayyar-e-taaba.N,
Ki `arz ye Haydar ne ke ay qibla-e iima.N,
Haq is pa rakhe saaya-e-payghambar-e zisha.N,
`Aala hai wo sab se jo muqaam-e-shah-e-di.N hai
Banda hu.N mai.N awr ye bhi ghulaam-e-shah-e-di.N hai                (39)

You being the father, and Fatima the mother of this merited boon,
Therefore, he is all resplendent, a blend of the sun and the moon,
�O Fountain of faith!  O Lustrous Light!�  This Ali replied,
May the babe bloom under your grace, may your life abide,
Exalted is your office, and your rank most important,
Like me, your abject salve, this child is your servant.

NOTE: Here Meer Anees explains his own faith in the words of Imam Ali.
The Prophet is considered to be the Perfect Man. Next to him is Imam Ali and then other Imams, in that succession, in glory. There are many hadeeth reports to support this view.
In one hadeeth, the Prophet says: �Hasan and Husayn are the leaders of the Youth of Paradise, and their father is even more glorious.�
In one of the statements recorded in Nahjul-Balagha, Imam Ali says: �I am one of the many slaves of the Prophet of Islam.�

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