The season of change is upon us. It’s chilly in the evening, and the sun shines brightly heralding the start of March. It’s the perfect time to slow down a little and indulge ourselves in some reflections about life.This week, we are happy to introduce a delightful surprise as our Book of the Week. A collection of poems by the famous Javed Akhtar brought together in the Hindi book ‘Tarkash’.
Tarkash (noun) : a quiver or a container for holding arrows.
It has been the longest time since we read Hindi poems, and Akhtar’s poetry is simple and yet deeply meaningful. Some call him the urban shayar and it is this quality that makes his writings approachable. Like his couplet on the concrete jungle we live in, where he skillfully accuses the makers of taking away his share of the sun. I just can’t recreate his words in English!
Reading poetry aloud is magical,and doing so in Hindi, is simply beautiful. You enter a world of the sheesham ka darwaza and the moofat aaina. Akhtar helpfully provides the meanings of some Urdu words, so don’t worry about being lost. He introduces himself in the preface as a Gwalior boy who went to Lucknow and then reached Mumbai,and his poems talk about love, nostalgia and the simplicity of life in the era gone by.
You should read ‘Tarkash’ to know that ‘shafkat’ in Urdu, means ‘sneh’ in Hindi, which means love in English. Maybe you can quote him to impress someone, maybe you can enjoy the poems in solitude.His poems are a gentle reminder that it is time to unplug and get in touch with yourself. Not overtly sentimental, not too philosophical and yet ‘Tarkash’ is a beautiful collection of powerful poetry.