20 October, 2020

50 Things We Don't Need

We hate them, but we can't get rid of them. Celebrate the art of learning to live with things we can do without...

50 Things We Don't Need

Vajpayee’s Poetry

SCRATCH an Indian worth his salt. Chances are you will find a poet who’s itching to burst forth into pentameters of pain or pleasure. But since every Bharatiya bloke isn’t a Prime Minister, he’d have to make do without the kind of play that Atal Behari Vajpayee’s mushy, meandering madrigals—his much-hyped ‘ekyavan kavitayen’—get in the media. The PM’s puffy paeans to pacifism and patriotic pride sound pleasant enough to the naked ear, but to discerning minds—and evolved tastes—they can only come across as verse that is singularly devoid of substance—and worse. The line that separates profundity from piffle is dangerously thin; our neta, the man who’s honed pregnant pauses into a fine art, doesn’t seem to know where to draw it. Vajpayee’s poems are much like his prime ministership: all style and virtually no impact. His I-have-miles-togo-before-I-sleep and mera-desh-mahaan brand of poetry, to borrow from Dorothy Parker, runs the entire gamut of emotions from A to B. Indeed. The Prime Minister would do the nation a world...



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