Hindi Poems On Life

hindi poems on life

hindi poems on life – Mahadevi Varma:

Mahadevi Varma: Political Essays on Women, Culture, and Nation
Mahadevi Varma: Political Essays on Women, Culture, and Nation
This edited volume of translations covers the major political essays of India’s first feminist Hindi poet. A devout follower and advocate of Gandhi, Mahadevi Varma is a household name in India and is a major woman of letters in the modern Hindi world. The essays collected in this volume represent some of Mahadevi Varma’s most famous writings on the “woman question” in India. The collection also includes an introduction to her life, with biographical notes, an analysis of her importance in the field of Hindi letters, as well as a selection of her poems – these latter because Mahadevi Varma made her mark in the world of Hindi literature through her poetry, and a volume of translations would be incomplete without a sampling of them. The introduction to the translated volume sketches Mahadevi Varma’s life and work and her significance to both the development of modern standard Hindi as well as to the nascent women’s movement underway in the 1920s in India. Little scholarly attention has been given in the academy outside of India to Varma’s numerous contributions to women’s education, to the development of modern standard Hindi, and to political thought during the Independence movement in late-colonial India. This volume of translations engages themes like language and nationalism, women’s roles as artists, the politics of motherhood and marriage—themes that continue to be relevant to women’s lives in contemporary India and to movements for women’s rights outside India as well. This volume of translations of Mahadevi Varma’s feminist political essays is the first of its kind. While some of these essays, especially those from Mahadevi Varma’s Hamari Shrinkhala Ki Kariyan collection have been translated by Neera K. Sohoni and published under the title Links in the Chain (Katha, 2003), there is no sustained treatment of Varma’s political thinking in one, accessible volume. While there is ample work on Varma in Hindi, scholars of feminism (and students of Hindi who are in the nascent stages of language acquisition) have nowhere to turn for a comprehensive sampling of her work. Mahadevi Varma is also one of the most difficult writers to access even for trained scholars of Hindi language and literature. Her highly Sanskritized diction and her stylized prose sketches make her work a pleasure to read in the original but daunting to translate into English. This volume has contributions from some of the most highly regarded Hindi experts. In the editor’s introduction to the volume of translations a brief biographical sketch followed by an analysis of the political climate of Northern India has been provided so that the reader unfamiliar with India of the 1920s-1940s will have the necessary historical context to place her work. The introduction to the volume also raises the issue of why she gave up writing poetry and turned solely to writing prose when she became involved with the movements for women’s rights and national independence. Finally, the volume provides feminist cultural historians a rich archive of how Indian women like Mahadevi Varma were actively negotiating their lives as women, activists, artists, teachers, and married women. This work will be of use to scholars of Hindi language and literature in the US/European academy and should be of interest to cultural and feminist historians of modern India. This volume will introduce Mahadevi Varma’s literary scope to an English-speaking audience, and will serve as a reference for feminist historians of the nationalist period in the Indian subcontinent.

One heart, many languages Poet and Author Mr. D.M. Mulay (Indian Foreign Service)

One heart, many languages Poet and Author  Mr. D.M. Mulay (Indian Foreign Service)
To be a good diplomat, it is essential to be a good human being, but not vice versa. So feels Dnyaneshwar M. Mulay, multilingual poet and author. Well known for his novels, poetry and non-fiction works in Marathi, English and Hindi, he is currently Joint Secretary in the Ministry of External Affairs, and has been around the world on Foreign Service postings. Coveted as the Services are, not every administrator views them as opportunities to “get into the heart of people”. But Mulay is obviously different. Not everyone can mould more than one language into poetry either, but Mulay, whose mother tongue is Marathi, is different there too. His latest collection of Hindi poems, “Subah Hai ki Hoti Nahin”, published by Alok Parv Prakashan, releases this Thursday evening at Mavlankar Hall, 5.15 p.m. Its Urdu version will also become available this month. Besides, fluent in Japanese, he has in the past tried his hand at writing poetry in that language too.

Becoming a multilingual writer has been a process “partly deliberate and partly spontaneous,” says the affable writer. “In my house we don’t speak anything but rural Marathi. I joined the Service in 1983, and all my friends kept asking me, you write in Marathi — what use is it for us,” he explains, and adds — modestly for one fluent in English, Hindi and Japanese and with basic Arabic and Russian — “I do seem to have a flair for languages. Wherever I’ve gone I’ve picked up a smattering of the local language.”

With his writings translated into Japanese, Russian and Kannada and two taken in school textbooks, he notes, “I do think this helps me to be more Indian and helps me to shed my regional identity. I am not seeing the world as a Marathi boy — I am seeing it in its entire complexity. That is the reason I thing I’ve been shifting between languages.” It gives him, he says, a wider perspective as well as a wider reach.

Insight on West Asia

Learning a language means learning about an entire culture. “The moment you master the language you become an insider,” agrees Mulay. “It’s like a key to the heart of the people. You feel the pulse from inside. It allows you to cross all the borders.”

As for this latest collection of poetry, it too stems from his ability to get into his assignments in more ways than the official. “It is my own insight into the Middle East,” he explains, saying he knows the region well — “though I can’t claim to know it in its entire complexity”.

The poems on a variety of topics dealing with terrorism, war, politics that breaks hearts, borders that negate life, form “a kaleidoscope using the Middle East as a microcosm.” Gandhi Jayanti was deliberately chosen for the day of the launch, he says. The collection “makes a strong pitch for peace, for freedom and for humanity,” says the poet, adding, “The objective is to bring these ideas before my people. That’s also true ambassadorship. Just as you take your country’s wisdom to other countries, you also bring it back. That is also my job as a diplomat.”

The Hindu (02/10/2008)


This is a portrait of Meera auntie in Allahabad (Uttar Pradesh).

Meharbaani is the Hindi word for Kindness.
Kindness and hospitality are key Hindu values.
I was reading this poem from the great Tagore and I thought of her hospitality while I was visiting Allahabad to give lectures.

The Home
"I paced alone on the road across the field while the sunset was
hiding its last gold like a miser.
The daylight sank deeper and deeper into the darkness, and the
widowed land, whose harvest had been reaped, lay silent.
Suddenly a boy’s shrill voice rose into the sky. He traversed
the dark unseen, leaving the track of his song across the hush of
the evening.
His village home lay there at the end of the waste land,
beyond the sugar-cane field, hidden among the shadows of the banana
and the slender areca palm, the coconut and the dark green jack-
fruit trees.
I stopped for a moment in my lonely way under the starlight,
and saw spread before me the darkened earth surrounding with her
arms countless homes furnished with cradles and beds, mother’s
hearts and evening lamps, and young lives glad with a gladness that
knows nothing of its value for the world".
Rabindranath Tagore