Through poetry that is a requiem for a dream, Meraj Hasan traces a parallel profile from his career in marketing and advertising, a self that is honest and tangled up in blue.
Growing up in Gaya (Bihar) allowed Meraj the slow life, away from the hustle and bustle of the urban rat race. His parents encouraged access to art, music and literature that led to a firm foundation that stayed strong through the storms and the good times. He grew up amidst rich exposure to the world of music - from Urdu Poetry and Hindustani Classical to Elvis, Jim Reeves and Western Classical - which allowed him to develop a pluralistic perspective.
Meraj recently took over as the head of global marketing at a $3 billion Indian MNC, moving over to the client side of business after two years as VP and Planning Head at a global advertising agency. He owns a turntable that he is proud of, regularly reviews LPs of which he has a proud collection, sings and plays a harmonica, and translates his artistic turmoil into heartfelt poetry.
What aids this capability to build and lead brands with an impeccable business clarity is a range of experiences that were absorbed over the last two decades. Meraj listens, observes and steps out to truly wrap his emotions around what the world has to offer. Throughout, he attempted to identify himself with emotions that he felt intensely at the time being - through love and ambition, through a drive to create art to an incessant hunger towards discovering better modes of expression, through indulging in promising musical ecstasies to skinny dipping with raw human desire - he represents an eternal pursuit, like a restlessness of a taut string, always in transit yet sleepless with a hanging anxiety of being stuck in one.
A doting father to son Agastya, Meraj has done wonderfully by wading through the highs and the lows of the fallacies of the youth. Through sheer will, he has reached the heights of corporate success most can only dream of. However, that is hardly a surprise since will and brilliance has never been a matter of concern. Meraj only ever sought purpose. One that is always evasive, always around the corner, one that always ensures the expensive chase was worth it.
To a keen eye, his calm demeanor fails to veil his search for answers in everyday life, as he unravels layers in every conversation, in every being - as he delves on every spoken word, tying delicate strings of seemingly exclusive elements.
Akin to a whiskey soaked ghazal that echoes through empty halls as the dusk sets in, Meraj Hasan offers a peek into a certain melancholy that celebrates tomorrow’s dawn while being conscious of what has been the cost - one that leads to a balanced soliloquy with the self.
Written by Sushrut Munje
Photographed by Blake D'Silva