Paperback: 69 pages
Publisher: Cyberwit.net (April 19, 2014)
Review by P C K Prem
Jaydeep Sarangi with four volumes of poems is widely anthologized in different continents. Latest collection of poems ‘A Door-somewhere’ was released at Rzeszow University, Poland when he visited the country as a visiting Professor in 2014. Fifth collection of verses The Wall and Other Poems is likely to be released in Norwich, UK in June 2015.
Jaydeep Sarangi is perceptive and each moment makes an impression upon his gentle heart. As a man of emotions and delicate poetic thoughts, he tries to reach out to relations with warmness. In prayers, he strengthens relations. A mother is a deity for the poet, for she acts as a refuge. Nostalgically, he goes back to ma so that she listens to what innocent breathings tell. Innocuously, he takes everyone to the lap of mother to seek relief when one fails to get succor outside, for the world looks callous and apathetic. Images continue to assault incessantly and the poet struggles hard to dispel darkness, ambiguities create. In a single moment, he travels a long distance in experiences, thoughts and emotions.
At times, innocent hearts carry a man to a land of mystery, and teach lessons of life when a man is a simple visitor and looks out for a little divine and everything that takes place around puts a question mark, for in imagery you unearth many meanings and yet you understand nothing. Unlocking of past is a puzzling suggestion because it carries to eerie happenings where fairies, ghosts and strangers scare but excite.
Experiences appear awe-inspiring as one remembers magnificent days as life moves and hints at a strange merger of ancient times with contemporary ordeals life faces and here, life seems hectic, and rotates around ‘tube and tyre’ 17, a monotonous innuendo to a dreamy sequence.
Poet’s obsession with relations (?) extends to philosophic borders when he deliberates upon the land of birth. Everything gets life and confronts a sensitive heart and then, suddenly he connects heart and intellect to modern agony where –
A roti for the hungry
A stick for an old man
In an alien shore
Ushering green plague
For the survival
Words written with embossed paper. 18
The thought reemerges in “Mystery of the Land” and gets identity personified, for going back to past and land of birth grants peace, a truth many would accept and to this extent, the poet speaks for men, who love and value land, its people and relations.
With blazing light from all sides. 23
A man gets relief, safe haven, light and wisdom as darkness diffuses and liquefies. Social realities disturb as insightful intellect tries to find solutions, which prove mirages –a genuine obstruction elite face, and at another moment, a door symbolically takes him to fresh vistas of fulfillment and delight that continue to linger on a stage of fantasy. Possibly, door signals openness, a life of anticipation and joy, of probable hurdles leading to ultimate enchantment though transitory but the poet refuses to confess. Door enshrines mysteries. One lives, for one believes life beyond death. Life is relaxed if a man lives in thoughts of gratifying indefinite. Man must open doors to knowledge and joy, and possible indeterminable salvation (?) if he seeks meaning. Surprisingly, the poet turns to the hard life some people live.
I have seen the tears of the oppressed.
I know my weaknesses.
I don’t know his tomorrow, behind the door
Can’t predict anything beyond now
Of a tree of forbidden fruits… 25
The thought evokes finer sensibilities again in “Hunger” with a poignant message. He eulogizes important people but one hardly notices 21, and like any other poet, he speaks for humanity as age knocks down body and intellect. Life turns frenzied with chaotic undertones as one arranges inner formation in a disturbed contemporary living while making genuine efforts to find truth of self-image. (31)
In the reckless current chase, man is insensitive and crude, he points out, “Blood is sold at low price, all can buy it. /May be with a discount /One bottle free, if you buy one.” (41) It is philosophic and yet simple thoughts make life consequential. One looks beyond horizons of imaginings and illusions, returns to everyday surroundings, and picks up themes emerging out of ‘the living and the dead’, for in each, one finds relationship, and it is poetic strength beyond evaluation. He observes-
I have written over generations
I save my ancestors as you save your missing links.
When the crows fly over, your brother listen… 35
Life is enjoyable if one tries to find approbation even in indistinguishable relations, “Life’s acts are shadows of the past /Shadows are residue /Of light and lighted trajectory.” (39)
In life, words transform to images and fantasize living, and a man reflects over the impossibilities. He knows variations in little shades life offers because meaning in confusing situations has a different objective. In images, he tries to find undertones of mystery life contains but he understands life is not a dream but reality and to anchor it strongly, struggle must continue, for it sustains life.
Causing oppression to the powerless,
But will turn again to re-establish
A just society
With a different key 47
Sarangi plays with words even if the words create intended gaps in understanding the true import, and so connects incoherent tiny incident of life with images and still does not run away from bonds he wants to continue, “I waited till I could meet someone near the doorway /Of my dream /Wet trees looked at me in amazement.” Personal agonies and wounds are much taller than one can imagine and here, the lyricist appears pathetic without knowing it. (48)
Poet’s lyrical journey to past and present and again to past, remains paranormal, and human ties carry the burden of delicate little thoughts and emotions tentative. He thinks of mother, land and a few relations when questions of earning livelihood engage. He wants to express, collects words but fumbles for a fulcrum, “She allows me to see the world /Through fissures in the dreamy wall /A matchless majesty fills my heart. / I demand to speak with God /I have business with him,” for he has yet to find answers to mystic questions about life that haunt and finally, when he returns, even the ancient path he left long ago, assists him in finding destination unspecified. He is hopeful, for ‘Each time I read history / I find a door somewhere’ and adds, “It’s a door between the self and the world, /Despair dances in Hope.” and that offers definite meaning to life.
A Door Somewhere offers enjoyable lines, for living in a world of fresh and exciting images is an experience. Transmitting sensory experiences in fine and definite word-pictures is an art and in this little lyrical book of images, one moves from nowhere to somewhere with a certain purpose where one finds life challenging, worth living and meaningful.
-An author of more than forty-five books in English and Hindi, P C K Prem (p c katoch) a post-graduated in English literature from Punjab University, Chandigarh has nine volumes of poetry besides books on criticism in Hindi and English. Katoch Prem is a poet, novelist, short story writer and critic in English from Himachal Pradesh, India