The dots I can’t connect

In my deep moments of losing and finding myself in a ghazal (right now I am reading: "Red Ghazal") I…


Har ek baat pe kehte ho tum ke tu kya hai

One of my favorite ghazals…

Atul’s Song A Day- A choice collection of Hindi Film & Non-Film Songs

This article is written by Sadanand Kamath, a fellow enthusiast of Hindi movie music and a regular contributor to this blog.

During 1960-70, Lata Mangeshkar had sung some beautiful non-filmy ghazals. Two of these NFS, viz. dahar mein naqsh-e-wafaa and aankh se aankh milaata hai koi have already been covered in the blog. These ghazals were composed by Faiyyaz Shaukat and K Mahavir respectively. In 1969, a LP of her non-filmy ghazals of Mirza Ghalib composed by her brother Pandit Hridaynath Mangeshkar was released.

Lata Mangeshkar had sung many ghazals in Hindi films especially under the baton of Madan Mohan. She felt that singing ghazals composed by Madan Mohan was always a challenge for her and the end result was very satisfying. I also get to know from her various interviews and write-ups that she was fond of singing ghazals. Perhaps this may be one of the reasons that she…

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Patricia Smith Breaks Down “Hip-Hop Ghazal”

It is intriguing – the choice of the ghazal – when its written by a woman, traditionally ghazals were a male bastion but to read a ghazal like this written with so much gusto its (for the lack of a more lusty adjective) delicious…

Poetry Genius

In a beautiful convergence of hip-hop and poetry, teacher, poet, and overall “word woman” extraordinaire, Patricia Smith, has shed light on her “Hip-Hop Ghazal” on Rap Genius. What’s a ghazal, you ask? Read the annotations to find out!

Gotta love us brown girls, munching on fat, swinging blue hips,
decked out in shells and splashes, Lawdie, bringing them woo hips.

Smith moves masterfully through the musical couplets, cheekily evoking the joy and pride of “brown girls” swinging their “blue hips” while the jukebox plays. In keeping with ghazal tradition, she even makes playful reference to herself:

Crying ’bout getting old—Patricia, you need to get up off
what God gave you. Say a prayer and start slinging. Cue hips.

Smith is the author of numerous books including Shoulda Been Jimi Savannah (Coffee House Press, 2012); Blood Dazzler (2008); Teahouse of the Almighty (2006), a 2005 National Poetry Series selection; and Big…

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