Mir Muhammad Taqi: Translated by Meghan Hartman

Mir Muhammad Taqi


Mir Muhammad Taqi “Mir” was one of the most famous Urdu poets in the eighteenth century, and is still regarded today as the khudā-e sukhan (the God of Poetry). As a child, he grew up in Agra, then later migrated to Delhi where he spent most of his life. Mir spent the twilight of his life in Lucknow where he eventually passed away. A talented and prolific poet, Mir penned more than 13,000 verses in many genres, especially the Urdu ghazal. Renowned for weaving complex thoughts on love and existence in brilliantly clear language, Mir remains a timeless poet.

Meghan Hartman



Meghan Hartman is a PhD student in the Religious Studies department at the University of Virginia. She is currently exploring the poetry and literary criticism of the Urdu modernist poet Miraji. Questions about selfhood and temporality in the context of lyric poetry especially interest Meghan nowadays.


(Translated from the original Urdu into English)





شمعِ صفت جب کبھو مر جائں گے
ساتھ لیے داغِ جگر جائں گے

As the guttering candle, when I extinguish
I will take with me the scars of the heart.

تند نہ ہو ہم تو موئے پھرتے ہیں
کیا تری ان باتوں سے ڈر جائں گے

Do not rage so – I am already burning for you.
Do I fear these words of yours?

کھل گئے رخسار اگر یار کے
شمس و قمری جی سے اتر جائں گے

If the cheeks of the beloved beam,
the sun and moon will fade from the heart.

خالی نہ چھوڑیں گے ہم اپنی جگہ
گر یہی رونا ہے تو بھر جائں گے

I will not empty my place –
|if this is your complaint, it will overflow.

راہ دم تیغ پہ ہو کیوں نہ میر
جی پہ رکھیں گے تو گذر جائں گے

Why shouldn’t Mir be in the sword’s path?
Perched on the heart, the sword will slice.




چمن میں گُل نے جو کل دعوی جمال کیا
جمالِ یار نے منھ اُس کا خوب لال کیا

Big talk of beauty the rose made yesterday in the garden –
too bad the beloved’s beauty deepened the red rose-face with shame.

فلک نے آہ تری رہ میں ہم کو پیدا کر
برنگِ سبزہٴ نورستہ پائمال کیا

Sky, spindling us from your sighs,
stomped us out along your path like a sapling-shoot.

رہی تھی دم کی کشاکش گلے میں کچھ باقی
سو اُس کی تیغ نے جھگڑا ہی انفصال کیا

A bit of breath had snaggedin the throat,
so her sword sliced through the struggle.

مری اب آنکھیں نہیں کھلتیں ضعف سے ہمدم
نہ کہہ کہ نیند میں ہے تو یہ کیا خیال کیا

Weakened, shallow-breathed, my eyes do not open now.
Do not say you are drowsy! What nonsense is this?

بہارِ رفتہ پھر آئی ترے تماشے کو
چمن کو یمنِ قدم نے ترے نہال کیا

Spring long-gone still returns for your antics —
your stride gladdens the garden.

جواب نامہ سیاہی کا اپنی ہے وہ زلف
کسو نے حشر کو ہم سے اگر سوال کیا

If anyone asked us about the Day of Reckoning,
then the ink-black answer is her tress.

لگا نہ دل کو کہیں کیا سنا نہیں تو نے
جو کچھ کہ میر کا اِس عاشقی نے حال کیا

No – do not give away your heart.
Did you not hear? This state of love did Mir in.



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