कल रात मन-सत्ता शून्य में विलीन
अवचेतन वृत्तिहीन सुख-दुःख हीन
क्यों न इस बात पर हो चिंतन-मंथन
गीत का उद्द्येश्य सोच रहा अकिंचन
महलों में गाये जाने को क्यों ये गीत
दरबारी कविता को क्यों मानूं मैं गीत 
विलास पर गीत करे क्यों अभिमान
मंदिरों में क्यों गाया जाये यह गान
पराजित के मन में आग लगा दे जो
सुप्त जन-मानस को आज जगा दे जो
समर में चिंगारी धधक जला दे जो 
अधरों पर आये तो सत्ता-शीर्ष हिला दे जो
लड़ जाने का हो जिसमें प्रकट सन्देश
दूर रहे जहाँ शांति का मिथ्या उपदेश
जहाँ न बहता हो रक्त रगों में पर आग
रणभेरी बजे, हर स्वर गाये वह वीर राग
धराशायी को द्वन्द-मध्य उठा दे गीत
इतना सब हो तब मानूं मैं कि वह गीत
क्षमाप्रार्थी नहीं मैं, हो यदि तो निंदा हो 
किसी को खुश करने के लिए नहीं
लिखो इसलिए क्योंकि तुम जिंदा हो। 

नायिकाओं पर बिक गए कितने शब्द
व्यंजनाओं पर मिट गए कितने शब्द
चेहरे को फूल और आँखों को हिरन 
तन की खुशबू को कहा पुरवा पवन
केश-विस्तार को बादल कह गये गीत
सौंदर्य पर शब्द-निधि लुटा गये गीत
कोई बताये कि इलाहबाद के पथ पर 
कितने शब्द उस पर जो तोड़ती पत्थर
समर्थों के विशेष प्रिय विषय प्रेम पर
नाना प्रणय-गीत बने शब्द जोड़कर 
कोई बताये कि नित लकड़ी तोड़कर
सोलह बरस की आयु में माँ बनकर,
जीने वालों पर क्यों गीत बने किंचित
सत्ता की तरह साहित्य से भी वंचित
सुन्दर ही क्यों सत्य भी तो हो गीत 
अधरों तक ही क्यों मन तक जाये गीत
जागृत कर दे, ऐसा शब्द चुनिन्दा हो
तालियों की गड़गड़ाहट के लिए नहीं
लिखो इसलिए क्योंकि तुम जिंदा हो। 

नयी-पुरानी कविता के जंजाल से मुक्त
तुकांत मुक्त-छंद द्वन्द जाल से मुक्त
शब्द छपास के रोग निवारण हेतु नहीं
शब्द किसी हितपूर्ति के साधन हेतु नहीं 
साहित्य की साधन समाज साधना हो 
प्राणिमात्र की ही ईष्ट की आराधना हो 
साहित्य के नवांकुरों से है ये आह्वान
सफल करें यज्ञ आहुति देकर निज-प्राण
साहित्य हो तो समाज का मुकुर हो
अन्याय के प्रति हो तो क्रोध प्रचुर हो 
नायक-द्वय का संयोग-वियोग अब बस
रूपक यमक श्लेष के प्रयोग अब बस
अलंकृत न भी हो शब्द, बस जिंदा हो
कैसी भी लोकप्रियता के लिए नहीं 
लिखो इसलिए क्योंकि तुम जिंदा हो। 

We'll turn to ashes in this house without men, but, we won't give this miserable town the pleasure of seeing us weep.
The magnum opus of Gabriel Garcia Marquez was a treat to read. Although Nobel prize in literature is not awarded to a Laureate for a single composition, yet it can be said that Marquez left a mark in the world of literature by this very novel and in the end won the Nobel prize for literature in 1982. ‘One Hundred years of Solitude’ has since then influenced the Latin American literature a lot and has been the favorite of many influential persons across the world. This book is a story of Buendia family and the author has narrated the story of the family for full eight generations. At the same time, this book can also be said to be the story of Macondo, the fictitious town where the story is set in. Through the events happening in that town, the author has described the transition of that town from an isolated place inhabited by few families to a buzzing commercial center. 

'One Hundred Years of Solitude' by Gabriel García Márquez
At the very start of the story, Buendia family lays down the foundation of the new town. In the starting, the life was quite simple and cut-off from the external world. Nomadic tribes used to visit the town, but slowly scientific advancements like electric bulb appeared in Macondo. Few generations later a railway line was inaugurated in Macondo. The older generation which has seen ships as the only way of speedy conveyance was naturally surprised. Then came banana plantation men in the town. The author has described them by their looks and language as foreigners hinting towards the colonization of Macondo. All this transition from a generation to another was done very smoothly and the author was able to portray it realistically. 

There are few omnipresent themes in ‘One hundred years of Solitude.’ The first one is Magical Realism. In this, the author describes many magical events and supernatural characters, which otherwise exist only as a figment of the imagination of a character, in such a way as if there was nothing extraordinary in that and that it was completely normal. Many generations of Buendia family talk to a Nomadic elder who is imaginary but is portrayed as completely normal and is someone who is expected and accepted by the family members. This concept of magical realism serves two main purposes in this novel; one, it serves as an instrument of exposition of many characters explaining their thinking and rationale behind their actions and second, it serves as a companion of Buendia family in their solitude, another recurrent theme which will be taken up later here. Exaggeration was a key element at times to make a point. 

The second persistent theme of 'One Hundred Years of Solitude' was cyclical nature of time. The events which happened were a pretext to another event in future. The names of many members were repeated throughout generations and there were certain similarities found in their behavior and skills. The members of the family from previous generations kept on appearing in their imaginations. Sometimes it was difficult to recall a person by his name because names are repeated so often across generations. 

The third recurring theme was solitude, as can be guessed from the very title of the novel. These years of solitude have led to the scientific discoveries which were well known outside Macondo but were new to the Macondo because of its isolation. Years in solitude led to learning of new languages including Sanskrit which enabled a character to tell future and this plot links inextricably to the climax. Almost each generation of Buendia family lived in solitude at one time or another and at one place or another. These years in solitude are where wisdom is reflected from the characters and where most of the philosophical content of the book resides. The author should be praised for such a lively description of the human feelings, thinking and impression of the outside world during solitude. 

This book also depicts the horrors of a civil war. It becomes very difficult to ascertain who is fighting whom and to separate truth from lies as a dangerous propaganda war follows the civil war by channels of propaganda such as radio, pamphlets etc. The military rule is imposed for trivial reasons. Civil liberties are curtailed for the protection of regime. This book brings out something more serious - while on the surface the regime signs a treaty and vows to work together, behinds the scenes it keeps on eliminating persons who show even slightest sign of dissidence. While the lower ranking persons keep on fighting with all their might, the civilian leaders try to strike a deal with other side and clinch the deal when small favors are done to them leaving aside years of idealism.

This book was different from other traditional fiction books I’ve read so far. Normally, fictional books revolve around the life of a central character or there is a purpose, a quest, a struggle or a journey as the main idea around which all the characters and events are placed. But this book was different as it lacked those two things. With storyline passing from one generation to another one may start wondering where the story is leading to, more so when the characters are not focused on a central idea. This is the beauty of this novel which makes it different from the other books and the author was able to delve deeper into a psychological analysis of Buendia family characters. Overall the book is recommended to those who like to read not-so-smooth fiction. The flow of the story is good. Also remember this is a translation of original book in Spanish titled ‘Cien años de Soledad.’ 
"The world must be all fucked up," he said then, "when men travel first class and literature goes as freight."

Ignited Minds by Dr. APJ Abdul Kalam Azad
'Ignited Minds - Unleashing the Power Within India' is a manifesto for the youth of a new India, an India which rises to its potential harnessing all its resources in an optimal way and becomes a world leader. And how would we do that? The answer is by using the power of young minds. Before we can do that, we have to awaken the young minds, 'ignite' them and let them set aside the inertia that has crept in. This is the essence of this book written by the popular scientist and later president, Dr. A.P.J. Abdul Kalam Azad. This book carries forward the ideas of his earlier two books Wings of Fire and India 2020: A Vision for the New Millennium, written in collaboration with his friends Arun Tiwari and Y.S. Rajan respectively.

Why did Dr. Kalam felt a need to write a book which inspires the youth of India? In his own words:
I am writing this book to make my young readers hear a voice that says, 'Start moving.' Leadership must lead us to prosperity. Young Indians with constructive ideas should not have to see them wither in the long wait for approval. They have to rise above norms which are meant to keep them timid in the name of safety and to discourage entrepreneurship in the name of trade regimes, organizational order and group behaviour. As it is said, Thinking is the capital, Enterprise is the way, Hard Work is the solution.
Every nation has struggled to achieve its goals. Generations have given their best to make life better for their offspring. There is nothing mysterious or hidden about this, no alternative to effort. And yet we fail to follow the winning track. More than the problems outside-globalization, recession, inflation, insurgency, instability and so on-I am concerned about the inertia that has gripped the national psyche, the mindset of defeat. I believe that when we believe in our goals, that what we dream of can become reality, results will begin to follow. Ignited Minds is about developing that conviction in ourselves, and discarding the things that hold us back.

Throughout the book, Dr. Kalam talks about his vision to make India a developed nation by 2020. He narrates the fruitful messages he got after talking to influential industrialists, political leaders, scientists, and seers . We can find the great pride that he takes in India and its rich cultural heritage and uses them to evoke national pride and to exhort the citizens of the country to work towards a common national goal. He quotes and gives the example of works of eminent persons like Thirukkural, Rabindranath Tagore, Abraham Lincoln, J. R. D. Tata, Vikram Sarabhai, Satish Dhawan and Dr. Verghese Kurien.

Today when I write this book review, Dr. Kalam is no longer with us having left for the eternities while doing what he always loved to do - interacting with young minds. His advice is simple and to the point - Surge ahead as a developed nation or perish in perpetual poverty, subservient to a few countries which control the world politically and economically. There are no other alternatives. The book ends with these inspiring lines:
"As a young citizen of India, 
armed with technology and love for my nation, 
I realize, a small aim is a crime."

बाणभट्ट कृत ‘कादम्बरी’

सातवीं शताब्दी के पूर्वार्द्ध में लिखा गया यह उपन्यास सही मायनों में विश्व का पहला उपन्यास कहा जा सकता है। ऐसा इसलिए क्योंकि इसमें उपन्यास में पाये जाने वाले विविध लक्षण देखे जा सकते हैं। उदाहरण के लिए किसी उप-कहानी का अच्छे से वर्णन और उतने ही अच्छे से उसे विकसित करने के लिए समय देना। साथ ही साथ संवादों की उपस्थिति और पात्रों की मनःस्थति का विस्तार से वर्णन, लघु से लघु सूचना का बारीकी से विश्लेषण, और काव्यात्मक पद्द का जगह जगह प्रयोग, ऐसी ही कुछ साहित्यिक विधाएं हैं जो कि इससे पहले किसी रचनाकार ने प्रयोग नहीं किये थे जैसा की बाणभट्ट ने किया था। बाणभट्ट ‘कादम्बरी’ को पूरा नहीं कर पाये थे, और उनकी मृत्यु के बाद उनके पुत्र भूषणभट्ट ने पिता के दिए गए दिशानिर्देशों के अनुसार इसे पूरा किया था। यह उपन्यास दो भागों में विभाजित है। पूर्वभाग बाणभट्ट ने लिखा था और उत्तरभाग भूषणभट्ट का लिखा हुआ है। कुछ जगहों पर भूषणभट्ट का नाम पुलिन्दभट्ट भी कहा जाता है।

कादंबरी मूलतः संस्कृत भाषा में लिखी गयी थी जो कि उस समय की साहित्य और राजदरबार की भाषा हुआ करती थी। बाणभट्ट राजा हर्षवर्धन के दरबार की शोभा बढ़ाया करते थे। उन्होंने हर्षवर्धन के राज्य और उस समय का वर्णन करते हुए प्रतिष्ठित रचना ‘हर्षचरित’ भी लिखी थी। राजा हर्षवर्धन स्वयं भी संस्कृत के विद्वान हुआ करते थे और उन्होंने ‘नागनन्द’, ‘रत्नावली’ और ‘प्रियदर्शिका’ जैसी रचनाएं संस्कृत में लिखी थीं। ‘कादम्बरी’ में उपन्यास के गुण कैसे पाये जाते हैं इस की पुष्टि के लिए यहाँ पर यहाँ कहना यथेष्ट रहेगा कि भारत की दो क्षेत्रीय भाषाओं, मराठी और कन्नड़, में उपन्यास को कादम्बरी कहते हैं। इस बात के साक्ष्य हैं कि इसकी कहानी 'गुणाढ्य' द्वारा रचित 'वृहद्कथा' से प्रेरित है जो कि मूलतः पैशाची भाषा में लिखी गयी है।

‘कादम्बरी’ दो प्रेम कहानियों का मिश्रण है। इसका यह नाम कहानी की नायिका कादम्बरी के नाम पर दिया गया है। कादम्बरी को चन्द्रपीड़ और महाश्वेता को पुण्डरीक से प्रणय हुआ है और पूरी कहानी इसी के इर्द-गिर्द घूमती है। यह कहानी कई जन्मों की है जिसमें एक जन्म में किये गए अच्छे-बुरे कर्मों का फल अगले जन्म में मिला है। अनेक कथानकों का वर्णन किसी पात्र के स्मरण के आधार पर किया गया है। इस प्रकार से अधिकांश भाग किसी पात्र के द्वारा सुनाया गया वर्णन है न कि रचनाकार के द्वारा किया गया प्रथमपुरुष में वर्णन। मानवीय भावों का सुन्दर चित्रण किया गया है और किसी घटना का माहौल बनाने के लिए प्राकृतिक तत्वों का सुन्दर वर्णन किया गया है।

इस उपन्यास से सातवीं शताब्दी के काल के बारे में और उस समय की साह्त्यिक गतिविधियों के बारे में कुछ निष्कर्ष निकाले जा सकते हैं। यह कहा जा सकता है कि साहित्य में अलौकिक तत्त्व और घटनाएँ, जैसे देवताओं का मनुष्यों के साथ भेंट होना, बहुतायत में प्रयोग किये जाते थे। साथ ही साथ सौंदर्य रस एक महत्वपूर्ण विषय हुआ करता था। राजाओं की विलासिता और सम्पन्नता भी देखी जा सकती है। चूँकि यह उपन्यास पैशाची भाषा की एक कृति से प्रेरित है इसलिए यहाँ कहा जा सकता है कि उस समय तक पैशाची भाषा विलुप्त नहीं हुई थी लेकिन उसे प्रतिष्ठा प्राप्त साहित्यिक भाषा भी नहीं माना जाता था। राजाओं और राजपुत्रों का लम्बे अभियान पर निकलना सामान्य बात हुआ करती थी। कुल मिलाकर यदि कालिदास और बाणभट्ट जैसे संस्कृत के महान रचनाकारों की कृतियों को पढ़ने का मन है लेकिन संस्कृत का ज्ञान नहीं है तो इस हिंदी अनुवाद को पढ़ा जा सकता है।