Mirza Ghalib In English Verse

Author : Roshan chaufla

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4.4 rating based on 238 ratings (all editions)

ISBN-10: 0942208064
ISBN-13: 9780942208061
Goodreads: 1186155

Author(s):Publisher: Bandanna Books
Published: 10/1/1989

GHALIB WAS AN OUTSTANDING poet in both Persian and Urdu, though his family may have come from Afghanistan. His father and uncle both led mercenary soldiers in the service of one rajah or another in Northern India. Unfortunately for Ghalib, they both died when he was young, and he had to find a way to support himself.

HE FOUND HIS CALLING as a court poet, in and out of favor. When the Sepoy Mutiny took place around him, he addressed a letter to Queen Victoria, offering his services — for a price — to her.

THE INTIMATE RELATIONSHIP to God took many ironic forms. As he lived next to a mosque, he said he was God's neighbor. His love affair with God was the occasion of many poems of unrequited love, of the cruel mistress. Such an erotic connection to the divine may seem alien to Western minds, but Ghalib was not alone in this personal relationship; he merely took it to its height.

THE GHAZAL FORMAT of poetry is composed of a short series of two rhyming lines (not kept in the translation), each one a complete thought in itself. The resulting poem has a theme, but not continuity — much like a stand-up comic's delivery of short jokes on a topic. Ghalib was a master at double-entendres and shades of meaning; this translation aims for simplicity rather than to be overloaded with baggage.
 

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