E-book Evaluation | Varavara Rao: A Life In Poetry

কারার ঐ লৌহকপাট,

ভেঙ্গে ফেল, কর রে লোপাট,

                   রক্ত-জমাট

শিকল পূজার পাষাণ-বেদী।

ওরে ও তরুণ ঈশান!

বাজা তোর প্রলয় বিষাণ!

ধ্বংস নিশান

উড়ুক প্রাচীর প্রাচীর ভেদি।

(Destroy these iron gates of the jail, the

demolish the stained stony altars

of chain worshipping!

O youthful Shiva,

Blow your horn of common cataclysm!

Let the flag of destruction

rise amidst the rubble of jail partitions

of the East!

Kazi Nazrul Islam: Selected Works [Dhaka: Nazrul Institute, p 128; 1999]

Can a poet residing in India as we speak dare to jot down such strains as those written above? But, somebody nonetheless sings within the evening for the hope of the dawn- poet Varavara Rao is a visionary who believes,

There’s a stir past the mountainous limitations of caste.

See, the shades of blood harvest 

Fragmented rays behind the hill.

Now, there isn’t any place for worry.

Actually, the daybreak will come.’

Varavara Rao: A Life In Poetry

Varavara Rao’s newly revealed assortment of poetry, Varavara Rao: A Life In Poetry edited by N Venugopal and Meena Kandasamy isn’t solely the witness of not less than sixty years of post-colonial India, however it is usually a guide of hope amidst the hate ridden political narrative of current India. As a delicate non-conformist, his pen aches for the farmers, for the Dalits, for the ladies, and for all who’re the worst victims of capitalism and state oppression. He refuses to be a prop within the background. Slightly he decides to be a chronicler and turns into the sunshine which brings change. In present-day India, when the deafening silence is so entrenched within the poetic neighborhood, Varavara is sort of erudite and apparent in his stand:

When crime seizes energy

Hunts down folks

Holds them criminal-

Anybody who stays silent

Turns into a legal.’

(“Mental” from the guide Varavara Rao: A Life In Poetry). 

He rejects the hyperbolic aesthetic of narcissistic delight, which believes in “arts for artwork’s sake.” He has no qualms in saying, 

There is no such thing as a self-deception larger than

Separating poetry and life

Like Bengali poet Sukanta Bhattacharya, he isn’t a poet who whiles away time watching the fantastic thing about the moon. Slightly, he sees the moon by the eyes of the hungry, oppressed folks.

Like Bengali poet Sukanta Bhattacharya, he isn’t a poet who whiles away time watching the fantastic thing about the moon. Slightly, he sees the moon by the eyes of the hungry, oppressed folks.

For Varavara, everybody searching for justice is his ally. So his ache flares up even for the policemen who have been demanding higher salaries and dealing circumstances in Might 1978. The poet writes, 

He was referred to as a person when he was born

He was referred to as a person when he grew up

However the day he joined the police to earn his bread

His identify grew to become lathi, van and rifle.’

(“Sure He Too Is A Man”, p -33, Varavara Rao: A Life In Poetry).

Varavara additionally understands that the dream of a casteless, equal world be unattainable with out the emancipation of girls. The poet is spot on when he writes, 

Girl!

Your tears is not going to crush your oppressor 

And bathe your rage in flames of fury. 

Converse to your rights. 

Step in unison with the marching toes. 

Go away the system that treats you as an object. 

Change into a pressure, turn into a person. 

Be part of palms to overthrow the patriarchy. 

Because the flaming pink solar rises 

There shall be triumph.’

(P 25, Ladies translated by Meena Kandasamy)

When a lot of the anglophone writers are actually writing from a comfy consolation zone of language and life, Varavara Rao’s poetry serves the folks. The residing, respiration, sweaty, stinking mass of the true India breathes in his phrases. The higher class can denounce or overlook his poetry as “uncooked” however they overlook what’s uncooked is actual. His poetry isn’t a lullaby however relatively a clarion name to look outdoors the window and listen to the cries of the widespread males. His poetry connects all of the fault strains of caste, class and gender to not pushing the strains beneath the carpet of the established order, however relatively to addressing the injuries to heal:

When crime seizes energy

Hunts down folks

Holds them criminal-

Anybody who stays silent

Turns into a legal

(P – 32, “Mental”)

He at all times believes within the energy of phrases. He is likely to be an incendiary to some however his poetry testifies that phrases are his solely weapons. Within the poem, “What We Want Is Poetry” he speaks on behalf of the poetry of democracy, 

The poetry that’s a metaphor of our fights

And one other world

The poetry of democracy…’

On this assortment of forty-eight poems, there’s ache and blood however the hope that the readers discover within the poem is the one engulfing contagion.

On this assortment of forty-eight poems, there’s ache and blood however the hope that the readers discover within the poem is the one engulfing contagion. And we should thank N Venugopal, Meena Kandasamy and Penguin for opening up the poems for non-Telugu readers.

Like his favorite poet, Kazi Nazrul Islam, Varavara Rao is a folks’s poet. His phrases are luminous on this darkish time. The legacy of Varavara Rao is the legacy of reality, love, compassion and equality.

Like his favorite poet, Kazi Nazrul Islam, Varavara Rao is a folks’s poet. His phrases are luminous on this darkish time. The legacy of Varavara Rao is the legacy of reality, love, compassion and equality. Tishani Doshi rightfully writes in her poem- “This Might Attain You Both As A Fowl Or Flower (Varavara Rao)”,

In each 

republic there shall be some who stroll right down to

the water together with his life vests and bread,whereas others 

lead troopers to the trapdoors within the cellar. You stand

on the edge beating a drum.’

Actually, Varavara Rao is thrashing the drum of change and the poems of this assortment reverberate with the track of an equal, free world.