Arvind Krishna Mehrotra was born in Lahore in 1947, the year India became independent and Lahore became a part of the newly formed nation of Pakistan. His family – caught up in the enormous human dislocation that followed after Independence – abandoned Lahore for the city of Allahabad, where his father set up a dental practice. His poems are coded messages from the unconscious, but there is an exceedingly conscious hand that crafts them. Initially misrepresented as a surrealist, he moved from the Beat-inﬂuenced extemporisations of his late teens to a spare, controlled lyric line. His poems derive their power from what they leave out as much as what they say, as if a host of ghost sentences stood behind each one on the page; and he is a master of the short lyric of a dozen or fewer lines. Author of three collections of poems and one of translations from the Prakrit, Mehrotra edited The Oxford India Anthology of Twelve Modern Indian Poets (1991), possibly the most inﬂuential collection of Indian poetry in English to date, and also edited Arun Kolatkar's posthumous Collected Poems in English (Bloodaxe Books, 2010). He lives in Allahabad and Dehra Dun.
Books by Arvind Krishna Mehrotra