Happiness in Verse
Take ten ounces of weather beaten verse, that had been left out to dry in the sun and the wind over days of unearthly isolation, add a pinch of apple cidar vinegar (or dry wit), soak in rare camaraderie and local spices like cocum, stir well and push into a chilled room lined with books to preserve the essence...
There, you have the recipe for perfectly done happiness!
Pour in golden goblets and serve chilled.
Yes, you guessed right - once again i'd trudged towards Kitabkhana, held up for long minutes on the stretch to Wankhede, as ardent cricket fans spilled out all over the place, holding up traffic. I reached late and missed the first reading. However, the scintillating rest unfolded before our eyes and we sat poetry-fied.
Listening to Anand Thakore's emotionally charged recitation of Shiva's shlokas in Sanskrit and then in English was a unique experience, filling up to the brim our cups of happiness.
Hemant Divate's LPG narratives (liberalisation, privatisation, globalisation) packed a smacking punch and gave us a chance to air our knowledge of Marathi.
Sampurna Chattarji began by reading poems by two of her friends and then read her nine little poems on Strategies of Silence, among others.
Bina Sarkar Ellias first read poems dedicated to Rohith, Kanhaiya Kumar and students protesting in universities followed by a dedication to a young friend in Pakistan who has translated her work in Urdu, and then some favourites like Kali in Shantiniketan....
Incidentally I'm so happy, because she's called me a poetry-soldier today! I do feel like one, or a poetry pilgrim even.
A brief interval here, when we browsed/ bought books, spoke to authors, got books signed...
The second session started with noted Marathi poet reading poems in Hindi and Marathi. His poems were deeply moving with a range of emotions reaching out to the marginalised, the deprived, in poetic ways.
Rochelle Potkar read from her book Four Degrees of Separation - the poem about her big happy Goan family with an abundance of aunts, uncles, cousins, relations, notions, ideas, idiosyncracies...she also read an old fav called Biscooti Love.
Mustansir Dalvi read from his translation of Hemant Divate's Marathi poems, and then went on to read his own works.
Ignatius read fiery poems in Marathi
Menka Shidasani read striking works from three of her books and also from Safe House. Her poem Waterfall had created a minor ripple at home, she said, when her daughter had seen it on the dining table...
All in all, a happy, creative evening, new ideas taking shape.