Yesteryears Bollywood actress Meena Kumari’s lyrical and emotional poems, a quirky look at sex from a woman’s point of view, cooler climes of Mussoorie and Landour and some roller-coaster adventures; the IANS bookshelf this week is an eclectic mix of genres.
Meena Kumari: The Poet
Author: Translated by Noorul Hasan
Publisher: Lotus Roli
Price: Rs. 395
Meena Kumari was not only an iconic star of Hindi cinema, she was also a poet of great flair and delicacy. This book contains a compelling selection of her poems in the original Urdu and in brilliant English translations by Noorul Hasan.
Haunting, crystalline and precisely observed, Meena Kumari’s poetry reveals a side of her personality that was rarely on display in her films. It proves beyond any doubt that she was a much more sensitive and self-aware woman than her fans tend to realise.
With a selection of critical and biographical material on Meena Kumari, including a concise introductory essay in which Daisy Hasan and Philip Bounds argue that
much of Meena Kumari’s poetry can be read as a barbed critique of Indian popular culture, this book is essential reading for all her many admirers.