Elizabeth Kurian’s book of Urdu poetry containing 150 ghazals is shortly going to hit the market
She can read the pulse of the market with the same ease as the poetry of Ghalib and Faiz. Finance and banking stirs her as much as ‘ghazal’ and ‘nazm’. Yes, she has a head for not just figures but also for the fine arts.
A banker by profession but a poetess by passion. That’s Elizabeth Kurian for you.
She comes across as a breath of fresh air on the Urdu milieu, reinforcing the popular perception that ‘ahl-e-zaban’ are made, not born. Urdu poetry belongs as much to the native speakers as to those who seek and adopt it.
Elizabeth is one of those. A chat with her brings out her innate love for Urdu language and poetry. She doesn’t merely appreciate ‘shayeri’ but has turned a poetess in her own right. Her book of poetry containing 150 ghazals is shortly going to hit the market.
Known in poetic circles with the ‘takhallus’ Mona, her dalliance with poetry goes back to her student days. She started with Hindi poetry and when she took up job with the Reserve Bank of India, her passion continued. But gradually she got attracted to Urdu ghazals.
“I could enjoy the ghazal but couldn’t appreciate it and this made me learn the language”, says Elizabeth. She learnt Urdu from ustad R.P. Sharma Maharesh and then mastered the finesse of ghazal from Kamal Prasad Kamal. Her association with the renowned poets, Ali Sardar Jafferi and Nida Fazali, further hewed her skills.
Sample this ghazal of hers which mirrors the contemporary turmoil:
Na masjidon ki baat kar
Na butkadon ki baat kar
Khuda ko dhoondna ho agar
To ghamzadon ki baat kar
This idea she carries further thus:
Bashar bashar mein farq kya
Har ek hai banda-e-Khuda
Hai arsh ek, hai farsh ek
Na sarhadon ki baat kar
A multi linguist, Elizabeth writes not only in her own Malayalam but also Hindi, English and Urdu. She has also translated poetry from Hindi, Urdu, Malayalam, Marathi and Telugu into English. Her recently published anthology of English poems titled “Beyond Images” deals with a range of themes.
Haal na pucha inka kisi ne
Jab the who bimar bahut
Unki khabar par aa phonche
Daulat ke haqdar bahut
Like a true poet, she tries to reflect the issues relevant to the present times.