1. A poem for Diwali


    come off it
    said chaitanya to a stone
    in stone language

    wipe the red paint off your face
    i don’t think the color suits you
    i mean what’s wrong
    with being just a plain stone
    i’ll still bring you flowers
    you like the flowers of zendu
    don’t you
    i like them too 

    —in honor of Diwali we wanted to share this poem by Arun Kolatkar, from Jejuri.

  2. Arvind Krishna Mehrotra on Arun Kolatkar

    Arvind Krishna Mehrotra, whose interpretation of the work of Kabir we published to much acclaim earlier this year (In The NY Times, August Kleinheider said it brought Kabir “to life in English for the first time”), was interviewed for a radio program about the poem-cycle Jejuri by his friend and colleague Arun Kolatkar. Admirers of Songs of Kabir should have a peek at Arun Kolatkar as well. Both Indian poets confess to a love of the blues (“Hound Dog,” a particular favorite) and American popular idiom in general (see Kolatkar’s famously cranky list of influences).

    The program also includes some readings from Jejuri and will be available until the end of December 2011.

    Listen now.

    Design freaks will also be interested in the discussion of Kolatkar as one of the most distinguished men of Indian graphic design and advertising. He was also a bit of a star cover designer as well. Some examples of his work can be seen here.