24 Mar

Review Of Vihang A Naik’s City Times and Other Poems

City Times And Other Poems – A Review

 citytimes

Vihang A Naik’s City Times And Other Poems is a mixed bag of unique, out of the ordinary verses, served on a platter for the reader to enjoy, ponder, introspect and re-read. The poems have been intelligently categorized under five different heads-namely- Love Song Of A Journey Man, Mirrored Men, The Path Of Wisdom, Self-Portrait, At The Shore and City Times. Each category has a distinct flavor of its own that stays with the reader for a while, and makes the reader want to savor the verses again and again.

The poems bunched into Love Song Of A Journey Man are inherently romantic. Every poet is essentially a wanderer, and this is what is reflected in the verses under this category. The poems evoke a strange mixture of nostalgia, heartache and profoundness.

Phrases like

“I

smell

the ink

of your letters.

Words betray.”

Or

“You

become a touch,

letters of words;

a perfumed card

in

a changed city.”

-haunt the reader over and over again. The poems carry a rich romantic essence.

 

The category christened Mirrored Men, on  the other hand, deals with darker themes. The poems under this category makes the reader ponder and ask questions. The verses are grave, and philosophical in nature. Sometimes harsh as well.

“Truth is a mirror

he has lost

in the dark

beyond the edge.

He has come

at the age

where he

cannot afford

to look at himself.”

Poignant and merciless words, make the reader sit up and drown in a sea of self-introspection.

 

The third category, aptly named, The Path Of Wisdom, contains verses that are simple yet profound. Weaving simple words, the author has created lines that are deeply thought-provoking.  A poet’s duty is to look beyond the chimera , weave verses that transcend the limits of time and  space.  Naik’s verses have achieved just that. The following verse, for example, has beautifully captured the essence of the continuity of life

“The path of wisdom,

on the contrary,

is never

out of reach,

of course,

in beginning is the end;

in end, the beginning.”

 

 

The category Self-Portrait carries a single verse that encompasses the realizations of the soul or the atman . It is very apt that this verse was not clubbed with one of the other categories, for it is unique in its own right.

 

At The Shore is again a series of poems that are in some way connected to the ocean or the marine world. Seashores have always been a favorite for most poets, as the seashore evokes a whirlwind of emotions.  One poem from this series, is especially fascinating.

 

“VOICE

paper kite

in clouded sky

lost

rising against

wind

the wandering

voice

of a city

boy

beating hard

against shore”

 

The poem creates vivid images in the reader’s mind-it is as though a picture forms and fades away slowly leaving behind a strange mixture of sadness and detachment.

 

The final category the author leaves us with is City Times. As the name suggests, the verses here, are inherently urbane. Yet they have a nostalgic charm that almost hypnotizes the reader. The author seamlessly combines the mundane with the extraordinary. The events are mundane but the experiences are extraordinary. The poet , through his verses, gently guides the readers to look at life in a novel way.

For instance, “fold all old calendars and smoke the time away” is a line that will stay on for a long time.

 

Vihang A Naik’s City Times And Other Poems is an enriching journey for any poetry lover. The varied range of verses ensures that there are no clichés , the reader is never allowed to fall into complacence.

Kudos to the author!

04 Feb

Amnesia

I wait in a corner of your mind

Untouched, unloved, aging each day

Clutching to a fervent flicker of hope

I wait for your thoughts to turn my way,

rescue me from the forgotten darkness,

stroke me like a precious piece

of hidden treasure,

cherish me again

with familiar pleasure..

 

Here I am

locked in the dark room of your mind

waiting for a light of recognition

to seep in somehow, through the cracks

of your stern resolve

 

My hope versus your amnesia

it’s a lost battle you see..

it’s not easy after all

being an unreckoned memory.

04 Feb

Faith

The hurt, the wounds, the wrecks will heal

New memories will corrode the old ones

Injuries will shed their raw appeal..

And then,

colorless, odorless, tasteless

free of fury, devoid of pain

a soft residue will remain

tempered by time

even the duskiest sorrows

will seem less bitter

and the brightest joys

will lose their luster

 

just a soft residue will remain

tempered by time

a tender faith will stay

a faith that whispers..come what may..

there’s always the comfort of a new dawn..

Despite everything, life goes on.

 

04 Feb

Afterwards

You will forget me little by little.

Like smoke rings flying off

your nicotine stained lips,

my memories too will be  abandoned someday.

Little by little you will forget

the trivialities, sweet nothings,

the small talk we made

and the long walks too.

Little by little the fragrance of my hair,

the shade of lipstick I wore each day,

will abandon your thoughts

and sail away.

 

Little by little I shall accept

the pangs of drifting apart,

the ebbing waves of passion,

the changing colors of your heart.

 

Little by little, everything might

Just begin to seem alright.

 

Yet.. a tiny ounce of regret

might refuse to evaporate.

A tiny voice, unheard, unseen,

might continue to ponder

“what could have been…

what could have been….”

04 Feb

A Myth?

Does anything last forever?

That which has blossomed,

will fade away..

leaves must wilt, flowers must wither

fireflies must stop glowing one day

 

When lovers swear by their lives

and proclaim their undying affection

Fate hides a crooked smile

at their words of momentary passion

For it knows

like everything else,

this amorous wave too shall pass..

“Forever” is such a myth, alas…

04 Feb

The Beginning

They said she was mad
To quit the comforts of her home
And wander among the unknown
They declared her insane
in hushed voices 
heavy with fear and disdain
“The Devil has got her
Look how her eyes sparkle
It’s a spell for certain..
How can she dare
to not worry or care..

how on earth can she laugh
when there’s so much she has lost..”
They didn’t know alas, did they,
no freedom came without a cost..

They sadly nodded
at her festive gait..
finally concluded
she’d sealed her fate …

Quite unaware 
of their pity
she crossed the thresholds
of her city
and kept prancing
towards the Beginning…

04 Feb

The Plunge

I will slip off the ladder of despair
and take the plunge 
to touch the sun

I shall embrace the galloping rays
filling my eyes
with a huge sunrise

And I shan’t mind the flames
grinding my legs
into ashen specks

And after all of me is turned
into dust and smoke, perfectly burnt-
floating amid the July downpours
I will still rejoice the end I chose.

For 
Some dreams are wider 
than the realms of sleep.
Some dreams are worth
taking that leap.

@copyright Ananya Chatterjee

21 Nov

Inner Calling

All around me they talked

All those men and women

They giggled and merrily walked

And I too among them

laughed and nodded ,

and eagerly responded

trying to stifle a voice all along..

a voice drumming in my mind

“You don’t belong- you don’t belong.”

 

I clung to threads of conversation

Idle gossips were fun I’d heard

I aped their posture

Faked composure-

A voice kept ruining my effort

A voice persistent in its bid

“You don’t belong- you never did.”

 

I gave up and heeded the obstinate plea

I knew not then, but I know this now

That is how I met the poet in me.

@Copyright2014 AnanyaChatterjee

21 Nov

Addiction

I try so hard to raze

The permanence of your memories

Corroding my numbered days

Like some cureless disease

 

Snippets of your shadow

Meander through my veins

Like a scorching inferno

Burning my loveless remains

 

They invade, demolishing my defenses

Like slow, bittersweet poison

Carrying the last of my senses

towards a colossal oblivion.

 

And in that void it continues to thrive..

The toxin of your memories- an addiction for life!

@Copyright2014 Ananya Chatterjee

21 Nov

A Bookmark

If ever destiny drives

us to choose separate lives

Don’t leave thinking of me

as another chapter in your story

No, I wouldn’t prefer that at all

Being an episode albeit special-

No, that would never suffice.

 

I’d rather you saved

my memory as a bookmark, a strip

hanging by  a single thread

on to the pages, as you flip

through significant slices of your life

 

A tiny bookmark, perhaps not quite

as important as the characters in your tale

Yet, vital enough, whenever you fail

to find your way-

lost in a maze of  chapters woven..

I could make you remember

just where to begin again.

 

 

@Copyright2014 AnanyaChatterjee