Whispering Day and Night
Poetry is a blend of ideas and imaginations. Sometimes poems are about returning to ordinary life but in a subtle manner. 'Whispers in the Wind', second collection of English poems by Raja Chakraborty, depicts a journey into memory, into inner soul and weaves unreal dreams with reality. The soft tone of his debut collection 'The Soup Bowl and other poems' has been preserved also in this collection but the impact is more intense, more pronounced.
The poems in this collection are impressions of a different sort- sensitive, engaging, bruised, endearing, filling the vacant space of a large canvas. In these poems, Raja carries his affection for words, whisper to many, that makes readers understand suffering and joy like gospel flowing in the veins and arteries.
There is always a smile larking behind his voice as well. Very rarely, he seems to be elusive, unhappy, hard to pin down. His natural aptitude for distinctive utterance is noteworthy. What is all the more remarkable is that he makes no apology for keeping it simple.
Not all twisting and turning, he believes in seeing straight and that is the best part of reading him. This sighting and the beautiful symmetry of the contents introduce a new path leading to the poet's inner attic. What sticks with you about Raja Chakraborty's work is its celestial wonder and sheer elegance. His writing is always a revelation of lightness, yet at times landing on harsh realities, such as:
She forgot to cry
Instead sought warmth
In the stray dog
Licking her face
With tear filled eyes
Mouthing a silent sorry
If only we could (Violated)
Poetry may or may not always be comforting. If we take a moment to observe – poetry gives us that moment. Raja Chakraborty's poetry echoes the same and it is the power of mind. This book doesn't offer a retrospective of life's slanted vision and acute trajectory, focusing instead on everything that follows the contours of the mask-less world, that still makes poetry.
I never asked
Why you did not come back
You never left
Still makes my flowers heady
Still make poetry. (Separation)
This a gentle piece, timorous at times, but his words are all about expression – of nuanced, serene. While it sometimes lacks the firm lines, it feels as if the poet opening a door open a little broader. The poet never hides behind beautiful words but reveals himself through them ignoring the risk of overexposure.
He wants to write a fairy tale 'In bright colours/ And laughter' but 'Until then/My bleeding pen/Will speak of/Forgotten tears'.
His poems also evoke the inner soul and the creative influences that shaped him not in a despairing sense, but in a sense of realisation, a destination achieved in a metaphysical time. Above all, this is a book that celebrates the poets love of writing poetry.
Though the natural world is often present in her poems, sometimes it mimics the symptoms of an unrelated condition. 'The moss grew on me/Inching its way up/Slow in its climb'. Oddly, in the midst of all these conflicts and complexities of modern life, the poet stays calm and records his moments in a nuanced manner and turns them into an impressively moving poem.
Raja's poetry is driven by a quivering curiosity before survival, and by a deep sense of transience. He uses a wide lens in his latest book, focusing on the role the people and society. For all its exuberance, the poet details the journey of life with ease and grace, gliding effortlessly into metaphor. He revels in 'keeps coming back to' home. In his universe, the physical is infused with the spiritual, the carnal with the philosophical. Everything is what it is, and perhaps a whole lot else.
Too often the poet's voice is low and to the tune of whisper yet it carries, sub audibly fiery thoughts throughout. He has a unique way of seeing the world around him. The whisper for him is a position of strength even in a 'kiss', not deficiency.
The dynamic energy of the book is sure to conjure up a spirit of creativity in every reader's mind. The cover page displays striking images.
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