Poetry Magazine Review
P | O | L (Poetry Out Loud)
‘Poetry is the spontaneous overflow of powerful feelings: it takes its origin from emotion recollected in tranquility' - William Wordsworth. Yes, it is tranquillity that should be stressed.
Should it be chanted loudly? To know the answer, we have to approach POL. POL is a poetry magazine that stands for Poetry Out Loud. It is poetry that should be voiced loudly from this collection as per the warm welcome given by the editor in its first issue - 'of my own volition, the best poems had been submitted to the POL magazine, and I desire to use this platform to publish the poetry of wonderful poets.' This collection, the first issue of POL, has encompassed thirty six poets from home and abroad that is really wonderful.
At first, let us torch on the thirty-eighth poem of this anthology - 'A Suicide-Note', written by 'Amrita Bhattacharyya', wherein the poet has divulged the scenery of her much-beloved lover's present absence as well as his attachment with the poison to withdraw him from this world through the following excellent poem:
Time slowed to a crawl.
She got down and found her own home
Unknown than ever before.
The question that loomed large over her
Was unidentified, as usual.
The door was ajar; unafraid to welcome truth.
He knew how to paint tattoos: black roses, green lizards,
Red Ships and silver suns. He learnt how to nosh poison to
Himself. He did not know the art of digestion.
Or else, he would have ingested
His failure to spot colour in an object
And, thus, he enlivened black roses, green lizards, red ships and silver suns.
Chemicals usually emit stringent smells.
She clasped a hand over her nose and
Started moving sideways.
We know that love is universal and that can not be erased by hook or by crook. The melancholic mode is prevalent here that gradually leads us to another poem - 'Adieu My Friends' by 'Saleha Chowdhury', in which we find the request of the poet not to compose any saga or sad song for her disappearance - 'One fine morning if you know, I am not here anymore, Please do not cry, do not brood, Do not compose a long saga, Or sad song, in solitude!' The last two lines of the poem give the readers an indirect suggestion or piece of evidence to identify her as a lone star. 'Mabub Mitra' has infused hopelessness as to the continuous indiscrimination to the nature in his poem 'Deaths of Mirthless Sorrow' (translated from Bengali by Uday Shankar Durjay)-
Cloudless sky, fishless rivers, cropless lands.
Natural crises is abounding in the air.
Loveless men are adrifting in the deepest dark;
Where our sorrows, deaths of feelings
Are expanded like cropless ground endlessly.
We also find the 'fading' atmosphere in the poem 'Mother Earth' by 'Malina Ghosh' - 'Earth's green colour is slowly fading! Losing the beauty of nature. Sparkling chemical layer on Earth!' Through the poem, the poet has exposed her to-some-extent concern to the extinction of insects from earth. The poet has not only showed her concern to extinction only but also successfully unbuckled the soft corner of our minds towards the nature- protection. She has actually portrayed the real environment surrounding us wherein we are encountering a miasma of days and nights. By reading these few lines, a question just arises in our mind - Are we really serious in the question of exhausting nature? Her other poem 'A Beautiful Day' is fully wrapped with 'pleasant breeze' that presents a charming environmental-mood in front of us. Surely both of these poems regale the readers with sempiternal-rejoicing-moments.
What is life? 'Shyamapada De' has adumbrated the characteristics of life in a very poetic way in his poem 'Life' - 'Life is a flowing river… Beauty, youth are merely migratory. They are summer guest…' If we stumble during our life-span, then we need to have a break. And at that moment the poet approaches us with an epitomising solution - 'All need to have a bathe with the love's craze, A halt to have an eternal flowing upon the sea, Soaked with love; a blissful floating…' The poet 'Naznin Seamon' is very straightforward to redefine patience in the question of 'our journey' in her following poem 'Patience' wherein a gloomy-dejected-tone of depressed lovers has been pervaded-
Our patience is intensely injured now.
Nothing to mend anymore!
No more shivering, no more shrinking,
No more squinting our down-cast eyes;
They are no longer wet and sightless.
Patience is history now!
It's time to wreck the glass ceiling and
Play with the shattered pieces.
In the first poem of this collection 'Neither Past Nor Present' Padmanava Adhikari, has depicted the consequences or after-effects of a war very substantially. In this poem, we find the presence of Ravana, the mythical multi-headed great-king of Lanka in Hindu mythology, wherein the poet has inspired us to remove the attacking Tartar from the country under the guise of Ravana - Then, the Tartar has landed again in the disguise of Ravana; Then, the Tartar would frame a hard-camp,, We are to loss our lives and neatness!' An excellent poem 'Word' is fraught with dreamy-theme in which we find the poet 'David Lee Morgan' is juxtaposed with a tiger. We are amazed at the gradual formation of a word that is beautiful. The beginning word has ultimately ended up in a purring-tiger that denotes satisfaction, or happiness -
I had a dream where the tiger and I stood side by side
And the air was alive with the music of our beating hearts
This is my tiger, I said. Isn't she beautiful?
Her teeth cut like diamonds, but they shine like stars
Then the tiger purred, the purr became a growl
The growl became a word; the time to dance is…now!
The poet 'Dorothy Oger' has uncovered her dream from her soul. In the last stanza of her poem 'Halfway' is concluded - Halfway to myself, In the quietness of my soul, There is a dream that comes in me, That says: Continue.' She exercises imagination to satisfy her as well as the readers too. We have a burning-image of restlessness from the poem 'Jones Beach and Breathing Line' by 'Gauranga Mohanta' - 'We feel the restlessness of the Atlantic having an idea that fire burns even after death'. We are also attached with the fire from the poem 'What a Bizarrely Fire' written by 'Ashoke Kar'. We have different scenery in this poem regarding fire. The poet has nicely presented the destructive and abstract nature of fire that ravish everything while suggesting us to think-going-beyond-stereotyped-life: 'Think once before you burn yourself, In a strange consuming fire, The wedded desire to burn the self, Know; the bizarre fire will devour all love, Burning yourself… And me too…'
The poem 'Moments' can be separated into three sections. In the first section we have the excellent flashback of the poet 'Hassanal Abdullah', wherein we have the images of the poet and his beloved passing an old restaurant from Dhaka. Afterwards, in the second section, we have the genocide scenery that touch the readers poignantly -
On the night of March 25 1971, by a brutal
Army that killed several thousand,
And the blood rushed through the streets,
Corners of houses, student dorms
Staircases of the apartment buildings, and
The overwhelming ghostly screams were coming
Out of everywhere in fear of mortar shells.
'Emily Priest' has defined love going beyond a long-waiting 'months upon months' in her excellent poem 'Ode to the Boy I Lived With'. The melancholic mood as well as infused loveliness of the poem will touch the reader's heart undoubtedly -
Yet then, I found him
And he was the sunrise,
Greeting me every morning
His and mine,
Is eternal and beautiful,
No perhaps about it,
And is far from fleeting like gunpowder
That only burns once.
The poet 'Quazi Johirul Islam' has picturised mid-august-environment as well as portrayed nature in a very attractive way in his poem 'Backyard' - 'Wind strokes the lush hair of mid-august-land, Golden finch flew, fallen feathers will stand. Someone walks, wood diverged creating gap.' The poet 'Tapashi Laha' is very much ready to bottle up the 'The illumination of yellow fireflies' in her nice poem 'The abode of White Lotus' on the otherhand 'Susmita Paul' has 'carried the hundred bells threaded to the feet half across the globe' in her excellent poem 'Sundays @ 12 noon' in which we feel the thrill of eyes' charisma - 'no one sees, no one feels; ghost-busting, is not their call, Only once your eyes'.
We have a sitting-chair-story to enjoy. The poet 'Kaikubad Ali' has nicely presented us the description of a sitting chair in the poem 'To a Sitting Chair' in which the readers have the different images attached with the sitting chair. Everyone came, everyone went but no one had the time to hear the song of the sitting chair - 'O sitting chair! Cemented and rooted over long, You listened many, who listened to your song?' The poem 'No Place is Permanent' by Shyamashri Ray Karmakar uplifts the transitory moment - 'the vernacular sun beams, luminous on my skin, Wax me more, before they scramble towards evanescence'. The poet 'Syed Rumman' has dignified himself as 'As a lonely Achilles…' in his poem 'She No Longer Calls Me Nowab'. We have also some other fantastic poems: 'Springing of Love' by Brojendra Nath Chowdhury, 'We' by Madhavendra Adhinkari, 'The Stitch Girl' by Khaled-Ud-Deen. The poem has flourished the beauty of stitches in 'the evening night'.
The poet 'Kamalesh Chakrabarti' has defined the person whom we should love in the poem 'Darling' - That person should be loved, Who is reliable, law abiding, honest, Polite and nice looking faced…' on the other hand, poet 'Nahida Ashrafi' has defined goodbye in her poem 'Whenever You Say Goodbye' - 'Bye, means - the blind traveler of the world I'm.' Some other excellent poems have also been included in this collection to mention: 'Healing is not Linear' by Nivedita Lakhera, 'Scarlet Clothing' by Mohammed Iqbal, 'If You Start Walking, The Path Will Run to You' by Prottoy Hamid, 'A Magical But Tropical' by Uday Shankar Durjay, 'Sigh of Lust' by AKM Abdullah, 'The Second Session' by Sudip Biswas, 'Eclipse' by Sukanya Bhattacaray, 'I Descry Decomposed Propensity' by Dr. M. S. Adhikary and the penultimate poem 'A Line Drawing' by Taufiqul Islam Chowdhury. All are excellent poems to go through and enjoy ultimately.
To conclude, we should read between the lines of 'Belonged to Sangita' written by 'Obayed Akash' (translated by Ashoke Kar) -
Sangita was my profound companion for a long time
The whistle made of striped coconut leaves
And on frosted green wings of Golden-Ladybugs
Someone has written our story.
Why are we waiting for? So dear readers, let's grab the collection and try to read the story. POL was first published in London-Bangladesh book fair September, 2019 from East Ham by Spandan Pen Union London, United Kingdom. The price of POL is £5.00 and will be available in Pathak Shamabesh, Dhaka, Bangladesh and Patiram, Kolkata, India besides London, UK.
The reviewer is a poet, essayist, literary critic & a banker