Prac Crit

Arun Kolatkar

Arun Kolatkar (1931-2004) was one of India’s greatest modern poets. He wrote prolifically, in both Marathi and English, but did not bring out a book of poems until he was 44. Jejuri (1976) won him the Commonwealth Poetry Prize, and was later published in the US. His third Marathi publication, Bhijki Vahi, won a Sahitya Akademi Award in 2004. Always hesitant about publishing his work, Kolatkar waited until 2004, when he knew he was dying from cancer, before bringing out two further books, Kala Ghoda Poems and Sarpa Satra. Arvind Krishna Mehrotra is the editor of a posthumous selection, The Boatride and Other Poems (2008), as well as the Collected Poems in English (Bloodaxe, 2010).

from ‘The Rat-poison Man’s Lunch Hour’ by Arun Kolatkar

1 / / The rat-poison man has left / his one-legged poster leaning / / against the wall of Wayside Inn / and settled down for lunch on the pavement, / / with his back to the poster, / in the polyphonic shade of the banyan. / / The dejected poster stands / facing the wall as if it has ...

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