Indian hand woven fabrics have been known since time immemorial. Poets of the Mughal durbar likened our muslins to bait hawa (woven air), abe rawan (running water) and shabnam (morning dew). A tale runs that Emperor Aurangzeb had a fit of rage when he one day saw his daughter princess Zeb-un-Nissa clad in almost nothing. On being severely rebuked, the princess explained that she had not one but seven jamahs (dresses) on her body. Such was the fineness of the hand woven fabrics..The author, who has spent several decades working for the promotion of handicrafts, provides unique insights into the lives of weavers striving to preserve the traditional textiles of the Deccan.
Moin Qazi has doctorates in Economics and English literature and has 44 spent more than three decades in the development sector working in poverty alleviation projects. He was a Visiting Fellow at the University of Manchester. He has also served on deputation to the Grameen Bank of Bangladesh, International Fund for Agricultural Development, Rome 4 and Ministry of Rural Development Government of Malaysia. He 60I has authored four collections of poems for which he was awarded and Honorary DLitt at World Congress of. Poets held at Istanbul. At college he was awarded the UNESCO World Politics Essay Gold Medal and the Gandhi Centenary Essay Gold Medal. He has contributed articles to Indian and foreign publications including The Times of India, Statesman, The Economic Times, The Hindu, Third World Features (Malaysia), SIDA Rapport (Sweden), Depth News (Philippines), Far Eastern Economic Review and Asiaweek (Hong Kong ), apart from writing several academic books.
Fine, finely woven is this spread, Tell of which warp, and tell what fills, Of which thread woven, is this spread? With nerve threads of the sun and moon, With pure-thread that seeks its end. Eight maidens spin and this wheel swings. With the five elements the warp is laid, Ten months to ready it, the Maker takes. Close, closely woven is this spread. This, men, the gods and sages wear, And in the wearing, some they soil. Kabir, Truth-Server, wove from birth This spread; now homing, leaves it as it is,. Fine, finely woven is this spread.
The above bhajan (hymn), along with the one below, were composed by Kabir, who was a mystic-poet, a non-conformist social thinker, a weaver, and an integrator. Many of his compositions carry metaphors of the weaver and his craft. Here is another poignant verse from him extolling the weaver:
How many know, the world-weaver, Who spread the warp? Earth and Sky, The two beams of his loom. Sun and Moon, Two shuttles filled and ready. He takes a thousand threads, and spreads them lengthwise; Watch him as he weaves today. The cir: The length end is still far away, Most difficult to reach. Says Kabir: Karma with Karma Woven with unwoven threads. How well, This weaver weaves.
When we look at an old sari, a hundred stories come to life, shimmering from its motifs in jewelled colours, from its worn pile, its subtle weaves. Stories of who made it, and how; of the matchless skills that went into its making, and its countless months and years on the loom. Beyond those first perceptions, there are the questions of why it was made, and for whom; the legends it depicts and their meaning; and the saga of its passage through the centuries; in all these lie the very breath of romance.
Braving the elements, sun, rain, or wind, as well as the travails of the journey, the weavers come to the workshops to make a living. Well before the big blurred silhouette of the morning starts its lazy climb the weavers are seated at their looms, beginning a new poem of fantasy each day.
If you believe in the simple poetry of hands, watch the hands of a weaver. Slender, almost thread-like, the hands have fingers that have nimble grace, from years of matching warp to weft. Watch the hands of a weaver, working colors of delicate hues - creating symphonies of sight, to the click-clack rhythm of a modern loom.
Item Code: NAR309 Author: Moin Qazi Cover: PAPERBACK Edition: 2014 Publisher: Notion Press ISBN: 9789383808625 Language: English Size: 8.00 X 5.00 inch Pages: 174 Other Details: Weight of the Book: 0.18 Kg