About the Author
Vishal Bhardwaj is a film-maker, writer, composer and producer. He has directed nine feature films, produced five and composed music for more than forty. His directorial work, which has won him three international awards and seven national film awards, includes Makdee, The Blue Umbrella, Kaminey, 7 Khoon Maaf, Matru Ki Bijli Ka Mandola, Rangoon, as well as the internationally acclaimed Shakespeare trilogy: Maqbool, Omkara and Haider (adapted from Macbeth, Othello and Hamlet, respectively). He has recently begun his stage career by directing A Flowering Tree by John Adams in the Theatre du Chatelet, Paris, and composing music for Monsoon Wedding: The Musical in Berkeley, California. Born and brought up in Kenya, Sukrita Paul Kumar is a well-known poet, critic and translator. She is an honorary fellow of the International Writing Programme, University of Iowa (USA), as also of the Hong Kong Baptist University and Cambridge Seminars. She is honorary faculty at the Durrell Centre at Corfu (Greece). She has published many collections of poems, volumes of critical writing and translations. Her books include Without Margins, Poems Come Home, Blind, Narrating Partition, Mapping Memories and many others. Sukrita has also held solo exhibitions of her paintings.
All of us know Vishal Bhardwaj as a film-maker whose films have consistently pushed the envelope and as a composer who has churned out some of the biggest chart-toppers in recent years. Here’s presenting him in a new avatar: a poet. Over the course of these twenty-five ghazals and an equal number of nazms, Vishal comes across as a poet with a distinctive voice and a style all his own. Whether it is a romantic ode pulsating with an intense passion or yearning, or a bitter, ironic comment on the state of the nation, a gentle sense of wonder, an undeniable rhythm and a subtle intrigue pull one into the poems in Nude, both in the original Hindustani alongside their English translation by Sukrita Paul Kumar. Unusual imagery, an evocative style and an idiom that is contemporary, yet reminiscent of the old-world charm of the Hindi and Urdu poetic traditions, each poem is wrapped in mystique. The Internet and Mirza Ghalib on the roads of Mumbai happily coexist in these poems, offering an insight into how contradictions can be reconciled simply and ingeniously.