Actress Deepti Naval is much recognized for her fine work in the Indian film industry. This time around, however, she has penned a book of poems. The book, titled Black Wind, was recently launched by writer-director Gulzar while actor Naseeruddin Shah introduced the author and read out a couple of verses from the book.
Gulzar, in his forward, has
said about the book: A distinct poetic sensibility
and rhythm, emotion and images all coalesce here
to achieve something quite beautiful. Life walks
on the edge of a knife, tips over into the unspeakable,
rises at sight of a flower, sinks again, rises
again, walks on. Black Wind extends the scene
a little but the world outside is not very different
from the madhouse in The Silent Scream. These
poems constitute a direct and honest female voice
speaking of suffering, madness and pain. They
deal with broken relationships, abortions, lost
chances, city riots, love, suicidal thoughts,
friends from the film world now lost, and very
occasionally, the possibility of beauty and joy.
The Silent Scream, comprising twenty-three poems,
is the outcome of a stay as an observer in the
mental ward of a hospital, and evokes powerfully
the dread, freedom and horror of life within.
We are made to see the life of those we call mad,
the cruel treatment they endure, the sense of
being stifled, the experience of gang rape, re-enactment
of lived horrors, and occasionally, a delirious
freedom form masks. These poems together offer
a sustained view of the other side of life’s
tapestry and sound a new note in Indian English
poetry, one that startles the reader into attention.
“These poems in Black Wind,” says Naval, the author, “belong to a particular phase of my life, the years are 1990-1995. Now that time has gone by and I have moved away from it, I’m able to look back and say, ‘Yes, I lived that… I went through this.”
Naval is also a painter a photographer
with several exhibitions to her credit. She also
runs the Vinod Pandit Charitable Trust, set up
in memory of her late companion, for the education
of the girl child.