The Last Light in Delhi (Dilli ki Aakhari Shama) is the story of the last grand mushaira held in the city of Delhi circa 1845. A cultural document of the period which takes the reader to a journey in time, to a past where poetry flowed through the streets of Old Delhi. It presents a portrait of a civilization, of the life and living styles of the upper classes of Delhi in the decade before the fateful year of 1857. It takes the reader into the sitting rooms of some of the most important people of the time, from Mirza Ghalib to Bahadur Shah Zafar, allowing us a glimpse of their private lives, describing their homes, their manners, their dress and ways of talking with such skill, filling his portraits with colour and detail so that the poets appear vividly before us. And it does not stop there, but also describes their style of reciting in the mushaira, so that it seems as if each poet is speaking out from the pages of the book.
Penguin Modern Classics
Mirza Farhatullah Baig (1885-1947) was a prolific writer of the early twentieth century, particularly renowned for his witty and evocative portraits of Delhi and its people. His works include classics of Urdu prose such as Dilli ki Aakhri Shama, Phool Waalon ki Sair and Maulvi Nazeer Ahmad ki Kahaani.