Hain aur bhee duniya mein sukhanwar bohot achche
Kehte hain ki ‘Ghalib’ ka hai andaaz-e-bayaan aur
Ballimaran ke mahalle ki wo pechida daleelon ki see galiyan
Saamne taal ke nukkad pe bateron ke posheede
Gud-gudaati hui paan pi peekon mein wo daad wo wah-wah
Chand darwaaze par latke huye boshida se kuch taat ke parde
Ek bakri ke mamiyaane ki awaaz
Aur dhoondhlaayi huyi shaam ke be-noor andhere
Aise deewaron se mooh jod kar chalte hain yahan
Chudi-waalan unke katri ke badi bee jaise
Apni boojhti hui aankhon se darwaaze tatole
Isee be-noor andheri see gali qaasim se
Ek tarteeb chiragon kee shuru hoti hai
Ek quran-e-sukhan ka safa khulta hai
Asadallah Khan Ghalib ka pata milta hai.
Link to an English translation: http://thinkloud65.wordpress.com/2011/12/27/ghalib-ka-pata-ghalibs-address/
This is the beautiful ibteda (beginning) of a song from the Gulzar’s Mirza Ghalib, the TV serial that was telecast on Doordarshan in 1988 featuring Naseeruddin Shah as Mirza Ghalib. And even if you dont understand the meaning of some of the words, it beautifully captures the sentiments you would experience when you visit Ghalib’s Haveli in Gali Qaasim Jaan in Old Delhi, even today. It is no easy task finding the Haveli in the narrow lanes of Ballimaran, but ask a few locals and find an enthusiastic rickshaw-wala and you will find yourself there.
The Haveli is a small non-descript 3-room building, more like a large compound with Mughal style columns and walls where Ghalib spent the last few years of his life. The Haveli showcases some of Ghalib’s most famous couplets that are hung on the walls as portraits in large frames and a bust of Ghalib that was recently installed there, on the eve of his 213th Birth Anniversary last year. If you try hard, the atmosphere of Ghalib’s Haveli can transport you back to the 19th century and invoke the memory of old times when one of the finest Urdu poets lived and produced some of his best works.
A personal favorite Ghalib couplet is below:
Unke dekhe se jo aa jaati hai mooh par raunak,
Woh samajhte hai ke beemaar ka haal achcha hai