Friday, June 12, 2015

The Sunday Haul (on 07-06-2015)

Three days after landing a great midweek haul at Best Books at Lakdikapul, I found three more books at Abids on Sunday. I found yet another Orient Paperbacks title with that sort of cover that they had sometime in the seventies. I am thinking of collecting these titles published in the sixties and seventies because there is something about these covers that’s appealing. The first book I found, the Orient Paperback title was a classic in Indian Writing in English. I had seen several copies of Raja Raj’s ‘The Serpent and the Rope’ but never could find a good enough copy to buy. Last Sunday I found a good copy of ‘The Serpent and the Rope’ by Raja Rao that had a quaint cover. Inside I saw that the print was in one of those fonts that suggest simplicity and elegance.
My second find was a title that I decided I would give to a friend. I found ‘The Penguin Book of Hymns’ edited by Ian Bradley that I thought would be an ideal gift for Daniel. After I took this home I saw that it had a hundred and fifty hymns including those I had only read about- Amazing Grace, and Lead Kindly Light. The book had a lengthy but interesting note about each Hymn- who wrote it, when, and such interesting details. I read that Lead Kindly Light was the second great hymn by John Henry Newman. It was interesting to read that Newman’s verses were a particular favorite of Queen Victoria and were read out to her as she lay dying in 1901. It gives one how deeply some verses/hymns/poems affect individuals. I will ask Daniel to let me keep the book for some time until I finish reading all the hymns.
The next find was a title by one of my favorite writers- Len Deighton. My collection of his titles has dwindled and so when I saw ‘Faith’ in a heap selling for only ten rupees I picked it up. I plan to rebuild my collection of Len Deighton titles, especially the trilogies- Game, Set, Match; Hook, Line, Sinker; and Faith, Hope, Charity. I see many Len Deighton titles at Abids all the time so it won’t be long before I have them all on my bookshelf.
Apart from these books, the really interesting finds were three volumes of some old Indian poetry magazines that I found at one place. I found ‘Indian Verse’ Vol 2, No. 3 of Summer 74 and Vol 3, No. 1 of Winter 1975. The third volume was Vol. 1 No. 1 of ‘Poetry’ edited by Niranjan Mohanty. In these three volumes were poems by some of the early poets in Indian writing in English such as Pritish Nandy, Nissim Ezekiel, Jayanta Mahapatra, Sitakanta Mohapatra, Shiv K. Kumar and many new names I haven’t heard before.

These three fragile volumes are perhaps reminders of how seriously poetry was taken in those times. I felt glad I found these books and these add to the collections of verse that I am unconsciously collecting these days.


S. Jayasrinivasa Rao a.k.a. winding river said...

Vinod-anna, those poetry magazines are real finds . . . treasure them . . . and of course, Raja Rao's The Serpent and the Rope . . . just for the cover . . . I am still looking for Hook . . . hopefully someday some Sunday . . .

Vinod Ekbote said...

Jai, I am glad I found them all. I am looking for Sinker for my brother. Abids is where it turns up one day or the other, eh?