Lafz’20: An Experience of Art and Aesthetics of Words

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Scribe: The Literary Society of Hindu College successfully organised its second annual Literature Festival Lafz, on 2nd March, 2020. Amid the quaint aesthetics of the theme, the audience members witnessed an array of activities, that amused and informed simultaneously. A comprehensive outline of the event follows:

Slam Out Loud is a non-profit that uses art forms like poetry, storytelling, theatre,
and visual arts to enable children from disadvantaged communities find their voice. Through the guidance of professional artists and the aid of e-learning resources,
Slam Out Loud helps children aged 10-17 build the creative confidence needed by them to
dream bigger and forge a bright future of their choice. Slam Out Loud currently reaches out to
50,000 children in Delhi, Uttar Pradesh, Rajasthan and Maharashtra.
Accompanied by their mentors, some children from the organisation recited mesmerising pieces during Lafz. Their poems dealt with poignant themes of family and pain, binding the audience in an appreciative silence of empathy and making the commencement of the event a colourful one.

The author of “Friends From College”, and “The Heat And Dust Project”, Devapriya Roy held a QnA session with the members of Scribe and other students assembled for Lafz. The QnA session was very interactive and entertaining, dealing with the theme of Love and Friendships in college spaces. Roy dissected the toxic and the organic in relationships, and held the audience with her insightful remarks.

Following Roy, was a performance by Rajesh Kumar from Jashn-E-Qalam. Jashn-E-Qalam brings out the art of storytelling to an audience full of listeners. Lafz witnessed a performance of their invaluable craft, and very evidently the entire audience was captivated and could be seen living the story which the storyteller made everyone envision. It felt like it was one step ahead of reading as the entire plot of the story unfolded in front of the eyes of an imaginative audience. By the end of the storytelling, everyone was visibly mesmerized and had seemingly entered the realm of the story.

This interactive performance was then followed by a poetry reading by the Delhi-based poet and teacher, Michael Creighton. Unlike other poets, who’d otherwise talk about architectural marvels like Humayun’s Tomb in their poems, Creighton describes in detail about potholes, dust and spicy food of New Delhi. The audience were surely intrigued and entranced as Creighton recited some of his poems from his book “New Delhi Love Songs.” Besides, he also read out poems by other popular Instagram poets, who just like Creighton, find beauty in small unnoticed things of New Delhi.

This poetic mood was then accentuated by the impactful and musical recitation of Naveen Chourey, a poet, actor, and writer. Naveen Chourey’s poetry made us see a whole new side of the universe, inasmuch as how art and science is so closely intertwined. We were honoured to have Mr. Chourey as our speaker and delighted to listen to his poetry, followed by Mr. Ankur Sharma’ s singing.

Lastly, the Poetry and Story Telling Competitions concluded the day with more than twenty poets and story tellers reciting self-composed pieces of art. Lafz’20 with the miscellaneous subjects for poetry and prose (short stories), was the embodiment of reading as well as writing making the event not sombre, but witnessing an avid curiosity.

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