THIRUVANANTHAPURAM: Ask Shyju Alex what connects mimicry and poetry, his reply would be a chuckle. He has been juggling both rather skilfully for the past several years. The mimic-poet is getting ready to bring out two collections of poems this June. Both collections - ‘Christhuvum Paapiyum’ and ‘Muttam Thookkunna Aankutti’ - deal with social themes, he said.
‘’The first one is being published by Prabhat Book House where I work as an assistant editor, and the second one by Naambu Publications,’’ Shyju, who belongs to Kochuthura, a small coastal village near Poovar, said.
Shyju discovered his talent for poetry during his under-graduate days at St Xavier’s College, Thumba. Coming from a humble background, the sights and sounds from his daily bus trips to college inspired the poet in him. Mimicry was a bigger and more important part of his worry-filled life at the time, but he also found time for his new-found love. Now 29, Shyju has several collections to his name.
Seven years ago, his third collection of poems - ‘Kandillennu Nadikkaruthu’ - was released by poet D Vinayachandran. Little did he know that, years afterwards, he would be the recipient of an award commemorating Vinayachandran, who died in February last year. His first collection of poems was titled ‘Innee Mazhayathu.’
As the years rolled by, the poet flourished, but the mimic too found new themes. ‘’I still do mimicry. My favourite item now is a football match between film stars new and old. There are 40 or so characters including Prem Nazir and Madhu, the two evergreen favourites of mimicry artistes. People seem to like it,’’ he said.
Today, his work at Prabhat Books keeps him busy, but he also finds time to conduct motivational classes for youngsters in schools and churches.