Poetry is pure art in the form of literature that uses an imaginative experience and an aesthetic quality of language to evoke emotions and meaning to a particular context. Literature can be in the form of articles, books, novels and dramas. But poetry is one of the strongest and most moving forms of literary works.
Here are five under-rated and contemporary Indian poets whose work is more than just a piece of art. Read on to be indulged, immersed and be moved by simple yet important phrases that have been written and rhymed to make sense of the world around us.
- Sonnet Mondal
Sonnet is a weaver of words and creates magic with his poetry. Born and brought up in Kolkata, his roots are in India and claims to be inspired by the country and its people. He personally believes that his poetry should be a source of upliftment especially in trying times by talking of the possibility of hope. An author of several books and poems, Sonnet’s work is widely been featured by several media houses and is one of the most celebrated authors of India!
To Syrian Children
You all are culpable— for wending your way to schools
for going to hospitals, for playing in open spaces and
for keeping at your dreams within a country in rags.
Yes, you never knew that you would be going down with
a fever that would burn your fleshes into a universal
white fume— blooming in newspapers.
But, liven up the carcasses now. You wanted to be
in suits like Putin or Obama; look what have you ended up with–
a sweat of literate talks in a ground of experimentation.
The handsome presidents have osculated you goodbye.
Now burn yourself completely, or they would light cigarettes
out of you, blaming you for the cancer rampant in air.
Don’t let yourselves counted — history will be framed without you.
You won’t smell good like those dead woods and leaves, so
vanish with the fumes and transform yourself into water–
it would fulfil your hope —
of staying away from fire
and desire to wash blind eyes.
The Unborn ones, please retreat to your mother’s womb
The mouths of guns are shouting outside.
Wait till they have the ear to celebrate your first cry.
Check out his work on http://www.sonnetmondal.com/
- Arundhati Subramanium
Arundhati describes herself as a lyric poet and is one of the most prominent contemporary female poets in India. With various awards and fellowships as her accolades, she is focused on extensively writing about culture, spirituality, identity, love, vulnerability and uncertainty. She has travelled through the Indian landscape and measures travel as a vital for her writing.
Give me a home
that isn’t mine,
where I can slip in and out of rooms
without a trace,
about the plumbing,
the colour of the curtains,
the cacophony of books by the bedside.
A home that I can wear lightly,
where the rooms aren’t clogged
with yesterday’s conversations,
where the self doesn’t bloat
to fill in the crevices.
A home, like this body,
so alien when I try to belong,
when I decide I’m just visiting.
Check out her work on https://arundhathisubramaniam.webs.com/
- Meena Kandasamy
Born and brought up in Chennai, Meena was born to her parents who were from diverse fields and backgrounds. However, due to caste issues then – she grew up among a family full of love but against the social norms that had her parents struggled with through an anti-caste movement. Their involvement and her outlook towards all of it continued to inspire all her work and she believes as a Dalit woman herself in giving a voice to social issues through her poetry that is celebrated by a few and questioned by those who believe in a patriarchal society.
Call me names if it comforts you. I no longer care.
The Scarlett letter is my monogram. I sew it
On everything I wear, I tattoo it onto permanence.
I strive to be a slut in a world where all sex is sinful.
I strive to be a shrew in a society that believes in suffering in silence.
I strive to be a sphinx: part-women, part-lioness, armed with all the lethal riddles.
Come, unriddle me. But be warned: I never falter in a fight.
And, far worse, I seduce shamelessly.
Check out her work on https://www.kandasamy.co.uk/
- Akhil Katyal
Akhil is a powerful poet, professor and a PHD Scholar. Born and brought up in Lucknow, he has always been interested in the literary world. With an English honour to start with, Akhil has been experimenting and writing poetry since 2003 and is very verbal about the politics of people, a great focus of his writing is based on Kashmir and is an advocate of LGBTQ rights. He manages to strike the right chord with his readers mainly because he has the capability of stringing his words in a way that resonates with his target audience.
The 6th century Hun of Kashmir
was so known for his cruelty
that ‘people could tell of
the approach of his armies by
the vultures and crows that flew ahead of them.’
Kalhana wrote in his Rajatarangini,
that the Hun was ‘a terrible enemy of mankind,
who had no pity for children,
no compassion for women,
no respect for the aged.’
all Kashmiris remember,
was a long night of massacre
that they thought would never end.
Does India know that
as one more spring was sharpening Jehlum’s air,
the Hun took his own life?
Check out his work on: https://www.instagram.com/katyal.akhil/?hl=en
- Arjun Rajendran
Born and brought up in the city of Mumbai, Arjun’s work is a throwback to memories, personal stories and relatable incidents that would make his readers connect to him. From his childhood to his present life, he is a master with words and has the ability to use them in a way that would transform and transport you to another world. An author of three poetry books and the poetry editor for The Bombay Literary Magazine, Arjun is a name to look out for when you want to indulge in an afternoon of poetry!
Hotel Lobby: Sultanahmet Istanbul
After the mosque and the church, some chestnuts,
after the rain— every drop a passport
to misery— we return to a room not housekept.
As we wait, we’re offered Turkish tea and Apple tea.
The family next to us is, we learn, from Germany.
Well, they’re Iraqis from Germany. We’re Indians
from America. But this evening, we’re all in the lobby
of a hotel in Sultanahmet: united against
the weather, armed with tea, conversing about
our adopted lands, kvetching about the cost
of food in this tourist district, how to bargain for lamps,
the cheat who drove us from Taksim, why they will
never return to Baghdad; sharing snippets from our lives
to keep the windy evening outside our thoughts,
from gripping our bones with visited sorrows
till we only remember places we’re here to forget.
Check out his work on https://arjunrajendran.home.blog/