Wednesday, October 26, 2005

Nirmal Verma passes away...

I always have believed that you should only read Nirmal Verma only when you can handle it...the kind of sadness and loneliness that suddenly comes,creeps up and then envelopes you after reading his work is just indescribable.
Grown up on hindi literature and being an incorrigible bookworm i have read a lot...but the kind of instant and definite effect his writing can have I cannot imagine anyone else having...
it seems pretentious to say that mere words can give you sleepless nights, can fill your nights with haunting silences, that suddenly you imagine that trees are sighing -tired in front of you, or the faded yellow sun behind the gray, cold clouds is whispering a half sentence to you...but it's have to read it to be that aware...
your skin starts understanding the language that your ears are not trained to hear
There was this compliation of three small dramatic pieces of his called Teen Ekant ... i had the chance to perform them too. The performance were torturous...because basically i am not an actor and had no idea what i was doing...but i got a chance to meet nirmal verma when i went to invite him for one of the performances...and he came too with his beautiful wife to attend it..i saw him and almost forgot all lines (i told you i was bad) but he still after the performance gave this big smile and came and patted my head for the brave affort ...the kind of high that gave nothing in life can ever give...
Weekend in particulatr was a story that always takes my breath away...not in that foolish romatic way but it hits you so hard that you are left gasping for breath...

one of this favourite word it seemed was beehad...i wouldn't even try and translate the word in english buy basically when you say beehad you imagine a lonely very lonely desert, where except dry sand that fill your eye and mouth you can't see anything...this word he had used to describe the eyes of a little girl who was meeting his divorced father's girlfriend. the illegitimacy of relationships cannot be penned more honestly than in the way he did in that piece.
yet there was another one ...i am not sure what it was called but i think Bukhaar...where the angst, loneliness, alienation of the protagonist comes out in the form of was a scary story when i read it for the first the age of 15...probably because there was too much that i couldn't understand so it just scared me.
but even now when i read it recently it made me restless...Nirmal verma is definitely not a person that you can read 'chalte phirte' , i mean you can try but do that at your own risk...beacuse eventually the words will suck you in its world and you will suddenly be too aware of all that in your heart that you keep so neatly and anticeptically buried in your heart.

excuse me because i think i have made him sound like a horror film writer...its just that if you have experienced a very cold evening in delhi and the only thing that you hear is the wind and all you can see is a vague yellow light and you are not even sure what that light is and the annoying addictive melancholy smell of gulmohar following you and everything is would know what i am talking about...when there is movement and life but still everything is still and silent...and after sometime the difference between both the phenomena cases to exist...that is what his writing was about...

I hope that the reader will see through my rambling and will get his writings asap and experience them for yourself...those who feel uncomfortable reading Hindi...a lot of his stories have been translated...and Little Magazine especially did very good translations....
and his words were like a painting so it doesn't really matter what langauge you see them in....

Saturday, October 15, 2005

Kisi aur ka khat padh liya tha maine ek baar
aur us ke shabd chipakte rahe the
aankhon mein din bhar
aisa hi laga tha aaj jab maine
bina tere jaane tujhe dekha tha

Ek baar paara pakadne ki koshish ki thi
haath mein
baar baar phisla tha
jab tak nahin haari thi main.
Vaisa hi laga tha jab maine un shabdo ko soonghne ki koshish ki thi
jo kabhi mere liye kabhi kahe hi nahin gaye the.

Khaali bartan gir gar khad khad ki aawaaz karta ghoomta raha tha zameen par us din
main zara sehm gayi thi.
vaise hi maine aaj jaate hue kadmon ki aahat suni thi
jo kabhi meri taraf aaye hi nahin the...

9.30 p.m