Poetry and me

A language without its literature is like a beautiful beggar. She has her beauty but still unaccepted in society. Literature in the form of Poetry has been part of my life since childhood. I *do not* write poems. I have to admit that I did try writing but then I would also proudly admit that its not my cup of tea. And so I put myself amongst the cattle class who are confined to just appreciating poetry.

I love recitals. I love to know people by their words. I enjoy each and every word used by a poet in a poem or couplet. I try to dig deep into the mood or situation for which he may have chosen that word. Why not use another word in place? Has the poet done justice by using that word?

My love for recitals is not just confined to poems, but any form of creative writing. Recital is also an art and when done in the way it should be, would sound like music. Poetry which is easy to understand without the use of heavy words is mostly appreciated. Most of us regard Poets as a “Devdas” kind of a person. But remember, a Poet is not a mad-man scribbling anything. Its a perfect combination of words for the illiterates like us to understand and who do not know or care about poetry.

What makes me write this weblog is an incident over which me and my sister laughed tremendously a few days ago. It happened that I sent her an audio clip of a recital called ‘Mushaira’ of a famous Urdu poet. She started laughing immediately making fun of each and every couplet; I didn’t mind. I let her enjoy. After all, the reason I sent her the audio clip was for her to enjoy. Although the reason may be different.

Nevertheless, My journey with poetry started from the school days. We had poems in every class. Be it in English or regional language. Some poets/Writers who have inspired me back then were Wordsworth, Shakespeare, Vivian Derozio, Ghalib are some to be named. I enjoyed every moment of my childhood reciting poetry and speeches in front of the mirror, making expressions to myself, and clapping to myself. This is a gift I cherish till date. Many of the recitals I remember it till date. And I will not be modest to say that I have become an avid speaker now.

Words are really important in a person’s life and his/her upbringing. I am proud to belong to family of two cultures of my mom and dad. My Father and Mother are from same state of Gujarat but their hometowns are in opposite directions. Mixing up both has given me enormous number of daily proverbs, similes, and synonyms in their own literature. I always tried to translate them. Even my grandmother has played an important role. I still remember a proverb which my grandmother told me. She said “Measure your words and then speak”. When I was young, I made a funny comment. “Should I bring weighing machine”. She knew that I would one day understand its true meaning. Many other proverbs that still go behind my mind, and another such is “Go and earn and you’ll know how many 20’s make a hundred”. I used to immediately answer “5 20’s would make a hundred”. What a carefree was I ?!

Over the years, I myself have matured due to this. But this is dying. Today’s youth is more about social networking. Poetry for them is only to be shared over text messages. The literature behind the poetry or creative writing is lost. Who encourages his/her son to become a Poet except a Poet these days? Most students take up literature because they are poor in Math. The graduates in Literature usually become journalists or become literary quacks writing poor quality books.

Nonetheless, I encourage everyone to read poetry in any form. Poetry doesn’t only express the literature of the language but also the poet’s mind and mood.

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