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Ghalib in British India – Sepoy Mutiny of 1857

It is not praised if you are the only one to understand what you speak;
Interesting is the situation when you speak and the others understand.

What could not be foreseen was the Sepoy Mutiny of 1857 – showing the fragility of the British hold on the sub-continent. For four months, rebels took and held Delhi, killing all British inhabitants. Ghalib closed his door and occupied himself with writing Dastambu, a diary of those troubled times. This account was generous to the British; Ghalib intended it to reestablish his career in a new era.

Why should my murderer fear me? What can she have on her conscience?
My blood? But that’s been flowing freely out of my wet eyes all my life..
Tormentor, you’ll lose your height advantage if those curls piled on top of your head are unpinned and fall down!.

If another lover needs to write a letter to her, let me write it.
Even as dawn broke, I leave my house with a pen behindmy ear..

Dying and living are the same thing if you’re in love –
when I see that unfaithful hussy for whom I die, then I live..

So, is this the tavern door, Ghalib? But where’s the preachy fellow?
I know this – yesterday he went inside just as I was going out..

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