“Poetry is blood, imagination, intellect running together… It bids us to touch and taste and hear and see the world, and shrink from all that is of the brain only.” – Yeats

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Kipling’s advice to any young man, on how to find his place under the sun and lead a life of integrity and pride. Just 32 rhyming lines and a life-time of inspiration.

What is that one sentence that is fit for every chance, to help you rein in excessive sadness or happiness. “Solemn words, and these are they; Even This Shall Pass Away.”

The most famous work of Harivansh Rai Bachchan (father of Amitabh Bachchan, the Bollywood star). Using imagery of wine and women, Bachchan delves on deep themes like religious strife, spirituality, and purpose of life.


Someone asked me my favourite poetry, and I remembered Omar Khayyam: “A book, a woman and a flask of wine… The three make my heaven, they may be thine!”. So here is to life and the mirth it brings.

Urdu, a blend of Persian and Hindi, is one of the most beautiful, soft and sophisticated languages I have known. Kuldip Salil’s collection has carefully selected ghazals from 34 Urdu poets, an English translation for full verse and also for difficult urdu words.

The classic ode to youth and sensuality, written in playful zest, and by the same person who wrote a religious treatise on Islam! Who says religion and sensuality cannot co-exist!