The ghazal is a poetic form consisting of rhyming couplets and a refrain, with each line sharing the same meter. A ghazal may be understood as a poetic expression of both the pain of loss or separation and the beauty of love in spite of that pain. The form is ancient, originating in ancient Arabic poem in Arabia long before the birth of Islam. The term Ghazal is of North African and Middle Eastern origin. Its root term in Arabic is ” gh-zl ” and is derived from the Arabian panegyric qasida. The structural requirements of the ghazal are similar in stringency to those of the Petrarchan sonnet. In style and content it is a genre that has proved capable of an extraordinary variety of expression around its central themes of love and separation. It is one of the principal poetic forms which the Indo-Perso-Arabic civilization offered to the eastern Islamic world. The ghazal spread into South Asia in the 12th century due to the influence of Sufi mystics and the courts of the new Islamic Sultanate. Although the ghazal is most prominently a form of Dari poetry and Urdu poetry, today it is found in the poetry of many languages of the Indian sub-continent. Ghazals were written by Rumi and Hafiz of Persia; the Azeri poet Fuzûlî in the Ottoman Empire; Mirza Ghalib and Muhammad Iqbal of North India; and Kazi Nazrul Islam of Bengal. Through the influence of Johann Wolfgang von Goethe (1749–1832), the ghazal became very popular in Germany during the 19th century; the form was used extensively by Friedrich Rückert (1788–1866) and August von Platen (1796–1835). The Indian American poet Agha Shahid Ali was a proponent of the form, both in English and in other languages; he edited a volume of “real ghazals in English”. It is common in ghazals for the poet’s name (known as takhallus) to be featured in the last verse (a convention known as the Maqta).