A Bowl of Warm Air
In this wonderful second collection, Moniza Alvi steps boldly into the territory she made her own in The Country at my Shoulder, a book which made her one of the chosen "New Generation" poets.
These poems, many based on visits to her birthplace, Pakistan, are at once beautiful, thoughtful, and quite marvelous. Alvi's work has grown in confidence and warmth since her last collection published in 1993. A greater depth of seriousness infuses her poems on Pakistan and India, but she has retained her delicacy of spirit and the gentle surrealism that identifies her work.
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afternoon air-conditioning AIRBORNE arms bandaged elbows bazaar beneath bird BOWL OF WARM breath brick brown line camera carpet Ceiling chants Christmas churning clinging cloth clouds COLOURS cool cotton courtyard cracked crowd dark DELHI double city dreams I roll England English face fade FATHER'S FATHER'S FATHER FIGHTER PLANES fingerprints floats girl is hennaing GRAND HOTEL gunfire hair head hennaing my hand Himalayan Shrine holes holy cow India inside kameez LAHORE CANAL language LAUGHING MOON leave her house London lost MAHARANI marriage Moghul Moniza Alvi neon night OXFORD Pakistan parrot photograph PREHISTORIC NAME rainy season retrieve roadside rocks roll right sapphire scarves shacks shoes and socks silks skin sleep smell smile Someone stare stars stomach stone stories streets stroke tell Tiger tilt touch Trainers trees turns unknown girl Urdu waiting walk WARM AIR wasteland wedding whirl whisper wind and rain woman women yesterday