Kuchh toh hai baat ke tehreeron mein taaseer nahi
Jhootein fankaar nahi hai to qalam jhoote hai
tehreer- lines written (as in a couplet)
taaseer – the inherent nature of something / the impact or effect of something
fankaar – artist, writer
qalam – writing instrument
Knowing the meaning of each of these words gives the couplet a whole new interpretation and dimension. I especially love the word taaseer – i dont think there is an english or hindi equivalent to it. Taaseer explains the inherent effect of a substance, thing, person, like the inherent effect of water is wetness or of the Sun is heat.
Hence the literal meaning of this couplet is that the inherent effect (taaseer) of a couple of lines (tehreer) written by a poet should be to mesmerise and awe the reader. If that has not happened, either the poet is honest or his writings must be dishonest. With this context in mind, each one of us can have multiple metaphorical interpretations of this same couplet.