HYDERABAD: As the title of the book ‘Till the Next Wave Comes’ suggests, this collection contains poems that sometimes appear as questions.
There are answers in certain stanzas wrapped as observations that the poet, who is an immigrant, in Austria tries to find.
But how does the poet Sarita Jenamani strike a balance between pertinent questions and the conflict of being away from home? Is the book a personal narrative then?
Well, her simple words document it all describing ‘Non-Place of Being’ as she writes:
before I enter
the door enters me
and keeps on opening countless doors
She’s opened a loop that houses several unending loops measuring the space to the place where she exists and to a world beyond.
What’s worth noting here is that the nature of the poem is surreal, but it searches for an existential meaning moving forward with lines like “…are they crossing me/one after the other’. The poet stumbles upon questions instead, and crosses several roads ‘In Search of the Lost Time’. She stops there pondering over ‘cliffs collapsing’ while ‘chasing their imprints’. but what does she get in return? Well, this stanza:
And we are left
like a defeated gust of wind
that strains to clasp
for a while
She goes on searching for half memories, broken paragraphs and streets that disappear without warning.
She tries to fill the recess in the closed chambers of her heart, but sometimes her findings spill over making the reader wonder if those are his/her own or s/he has accidentally got a key to enter, which perhaps, offers no exit. The memory becomes a large sea and ‘till the next wave comes back’, this is what one discovers:
or forgetfully-left-behind gifts
Then she wakes up the immigrant in the reader through poems like ‘Eternal Cities’. she emphasizes that cities ‘exist inside us’ where ‘the scared river turns to desert’.
She observes the heart as it turns every key, but no door opens. She feels lost in a country where she lives, but it’s not her home. Her narrative changes with the poem like ‘Monologue in Exile’ in which she refuses to write about peacocks, banyan trees and flowers.
It’s an angry poem, but the tone mellows down to a sad one in ‘Viennese Coffee-houses’ noticing the crowd of solitude around the tables. She uses daily-life language and common images to which the reader can connect and delve deep into this book.
Available on Amazon.in
Publisher: Dhauli Books
Price: Rs 350