‘Birth of a Poem’ as part of VerdArti festival at Villa Dolfin, Porcia, Italy.
Alessandro Canzian reading the Italian Translation of my poem ‘Birth of a Poem’ at Villa Corrier Dolfin, Porcia ,Italy as part of the VerArti Festival.
A few more photographs from the lovely festival where artists and poets gathered to celebrate their work and of others. Copyright VerdArti.
Also Visit these links for more information and event photographs/videos, media news etc.-
This solitude is too loud. The writer’s block is too full of words swirling inside me. Unfinished poems, half told stories that rise and fall inside me like cresting waves travelling thousands of miles with tremendous amount of power and momentum to reach the shore. Each one with a different tone and timbre. Slowly forming themselves from micro ripples to ripples, to wavelets to waves that are steep and choppy, all rising from an almost invisible swell at a distance, spilling, surging or plunging as they break over the beach. Waves that are the pulse of the ocean that’s inside me. I tune myself to their magical ability to nurture or destroy, to their colors, forms, moods and character, their faces, forms and manners, their tints and tones, their murmurs, their rage and sorrow, scorn and anxiousness as they frown and foam and riot inside me. I listen to their lament, their agony as they snap and lose their elasticity. I feel the spray of their innocent childhood, their luminous youth. I inhale their faint sillage, the salty sweet smell of their leaving. A beautiful memory of small moments destined to be lost.
I revel in their phosphorescent, fragrant, passion as they whorl and dance, rise and fall with a tender ecstasy only they possess. I feel their taste, sweet, sultry, fiery as I catch the dripping juices on my parched tongue. I conjure them and watch them rustle around me like a memory of a language long forsaken. I feel the rush of love, the surge of grief, the respite of peace..
I am persistent in all the highs and lows of life and even though the page remains empty I write. I pocket every sound and smell, every motion, every pause that has been dormant till this moment. I let it enliven my senses. I give myself to the seductive, never ceasing invitation of these waves and let the spell enfold me and make my soul wander into the close sensuous embrace of the sea. There is no story board inside me. Thoughts flow free. Sometimes, like a glint on a piece of glass, something illuminates, Le Mot Juste, and flows to the tips of my fingers, there is a quiver of understanding from the word to the brain to the heart and in that moment of transcendence words shed their printed bodies on the paper making it pulsate with life.
They may mean nothing to you or maybe everything but to me they bring on the much needed catharsis. They help me expand my horizons inwardly.
You never lose by loving, you lose by holding back. So I write. I flow. My creative intelligence creates; recreates and transforms all that is not perfect though the twenty six letters. Words are stronger as they come together to Purge, purify, and expunge the unwanted just as the waves do.
Usually all rivers flow to the sea but this river flows from the sea, turning the salt to sweetness as it journeys to the source.
Against all odds.
I turn you into stories, verses and let the images emerge in accordance to my dreams making me whole and perfect and in the process the negative flows out leaving nothing but the sweetness of love. The key to healing is allowing so I get out of the way and trust the recovery. Letting the vibrations flow from the words that sooth me into being whole. What we write we become, is what I am learning so I write of hope, faith, trust and love. Releasing the block, releasing the doubt. Allowing the impulse to write rather than force it, molding the clay (words in this case) for the purpose of talking myself into vibrational alignment of what I want rather than dwell on what’s not or imagine what won’t be or wasn’t there.
Today is the day of gratitude. I am grateful to you for stepping into my world. For allowing me into yours. For the words you fed me morsel by morsel and helped me nourish my mind, body and soul. Expectation is the combination of desire with belief and I am thankful to you for showing me that. It has helped me write a new story. I am using this block and solitude to bury the historian in me and become a story teller so that the future doesn’t become like the past. The past is over and done with. No more beating this drum. I start afresh. I have lived enough to know what I want and to know what I don’t want. You didn’t know who you were and that taught me who I am. Thank you for that and for giving me greater strength, independence and clarity. There will be and are a million things that will take me back to what it was but thanks to you I will remind myself to see all the benefits that came out of those hurts and aches silences among other things. I promise that my happiness in an inside job so I won’t hold you responsible for how I feel or ask you to change in any way to make me happy. So, thank you for helping me discover a stronger than ever desire. Thank you for loving me, for all the said and unsaid words and for all the pauses.
Suddenly, I don’t know what to say. I do know what I want to say but when the moment comes to speak, I can’t say it or even write it. And yet…
It is that time of the year again when the memory of the days and nights when I knew who I was often come back to me floating through the night. Sometimes I want to touch you, just a bit. A bit of your skin on my fingertip, a bit of your warmth against mine. Sometimes I want to hear your voice. Not much, maybe a word or two just to assure myself that you are real and that it wasn’t a dream when like a tree in bloom I had released my blossoms on you all at once knowing that it would be a long time before the next blossoming. Maybe never. Then suddenly everything fades and I don’t know what to say or do and this overwhelming quiet that cocoons me becomes a constant reminder of my sudden isolation, Was it really sudden or is it that I had always felt the undercurrents but ignored them. Imagined that they never existed. Denied their presence. Denied her presence even though it was always there. Like a shadow. Your shadow. You said you loved me but the way you spoke of her always told me otherwise. Under all the disdain, regret, sorrow I felt a sense of pride with which you took her name.
Maybe I need this silence to pull myself out of the wreckage of my own dreams. There is an old knot in my heart that I need to untie. I don’t want to hurt loudly now. I don’t want all that I feel to find its way to you. I want to become invisible as much as you want me gone. What you give comes back to you . I gave myself.
Sometimes it is difficult to make out if it is loss of feeling or a feeling of loss. Sometimes it is best not to stir the embers of a dying fire lest some sparks turn to flames and consume you.
Some things are better not found. Sometimes ignorance is bliss. For a long time the question lingered on my lips and then on a fateful day I asked, ” Whom do you see when you close your eyes?” “No one.” You replied. “Who was I supposed to see?’
“The person you love most.” I said. Your silence, your hesitation unraveled everything like a loose thread in a knitted sweater. A thread I should not have pulled.
If one is unaware of something it is best that it stays that way till one is capable of dealing with the deluge of hurt and pain it brings. There is a reason why we don’t know it all. The knowledge that one cannot do a thing to alter, change or rectify it can suck the meaning out of life and leave one dejected and defeated. Suddenly I feel exposed to things I wish I had never known. They have emptied my life of joy. Of love. Of trust. Once more leaving me fragile, vulnerable and alone.
I have decided to stay in the peace of my new-found quietness. Someday maybe I will find myself. Someday maybe you will remember all that was good between us and then look for me. Perhaps it will be the day when you will find yourself. I hope you do because I want to be found and I want you to find me with the credence I long for, the credence that has faded with time. Till then I will weave myself warmly in a cocoon and wait for the unfolding which will come from you.
Foglie di poesia or ‘Leaves of Poetry‘ is one of the many programs to be held during the VerdArti Festival at Villa Dolfin, Porcia, Italy from August 29- August 31. The theme of VerdArti is Nature, Art and Poetry.
During this period short poems will be installed all around the beautiful park of the ancient Villa Correr Dolfin as an exhibition. The best poems will be read out on Sunday morning as part of the event FOGLIE DI POESIA. I am very happy and proud to be part of this grand event. To be featured among such talented artists and poets is an honor indeed.
This poem of mine will be installed in the park among many others for display reading . The translation in Italian is by Alessandro Canzian (Samuele Editore Due)
BIRTH OF A POEM
While a poem sparks through a seed of wonder
and reaches up to the sky another swiftly travels
deep and beyond in complex tangles
under the surface of the soil
proliferating out below and in all directions
under debris and filth of cities,
along the grassy river beds
into the ocean bed
slithering beneath countries, continents
into the deep forests
under the desolate deserts
through the heart of frozen mountains
birthing new poems
joined together by the same consciousness
same essence of
Earth, Water, Fire, Wind, and Void.
NASCITA DI UNA POESIA
Mentre una poesia germoglia da un seme di stupore
e arriva fino al cielo un’altra velocemente ramifica
nel fondo e nell’oltre dei grovigli complessi
sotto la superficie del suolo
proliferando sotto e in tutte le direzioni
sotto i detriti e la sporcizia delle città,
lungo i letti dei fiumi erbosi
e sempre più in basso
nel fondo dell’oceano
strisciando al di sotto dei paesi, dei continenti
nelle foreste profonde
sotto i deserti desolati
attraverso il cuore delle montagne congelate
gemmando nuove altre poesie
accomunate dalla medesima coscienza
dalla stessa essenza della
Terra, dell’Acqua, del Fuoco, del Vento e del Vuoto.
(Translation by Alessandro Canzian)
For detailed information please visit this website
You can read about the program in English HERE and in the links above.
The parks of this beautiful villa will hold the three-day festival. Be there if you are around this area.
Villa Dolfin ( Video rights reserved – Giovanni Del Ben )
this poem is a finder of voices,
its spectral form lingers
in the midst of human turmoil
looking for an empathic match
and, when found, it bridges
the divide between them
this poem is a tree
waiting for the birds
to return and fill it
with their songs.
For a moment
This is poem is dead.
Killed in its mother’s womb.
It’s brain matter extruded,
just for a pack of cigarettes
in a chilling war game.
This poem wanted to play games too,
games that little children play.
Here is the recipe for the Karonda Jam that I make. Do try this too.
These days mom is making mango pickles of all kind so I decided to just indulge in Fruit preserves and other fruit based desserts but the sight of gorgeous Karondas at a local vegetable vender was enough to temp me to buy some. As I had done a recipe for Jam earlier I decided to share my version of Karonda pickle with hot green chillies and pods of garlic. Easy to make and ready to eat, this pickle can be made fresh or can be kept for at lease two weeks. I prefer to make small quantity through out the season.
Karonda is a berry fruit that is said to have originated in the Himalayas and is found across north India and many other places across the globe. It is basically a tropical fruit. A sour and acidic fruit with no sweetness. It is full of calcium, Vitamin A, Vitamin C, Iron and other nutrients and is used as blood sugar stabilizer and for many other ailments. It freezes well and can also be kept in the fridge for at least a week.
The recipe for Karonda pickle includes fresh green chillies and garlic pods, both ingredients are full of health benefits and enhance the taste of the pickle.
Karonda – 200 gm
Green chillies – 3-4 medium size
Garlic pods – 4/5 big ones
coriander seeds – 11/2 teaspoon
Cumin Seeds/Zeera – 1/2 teaspoon
Fenugreek Seeds/ Methi dana – 1/2 Teaspoon
Nigella Sativa / Kaluanji – 1/4 teaspoon
mustard seeds -1/4 teespoon
Fennel Seeds – 1/2 teaspoon
turmeric Powder – 1/2 teaspoon
coriander Powder- 1/2 teaspoon
Red Chilli Powder – 1/4 teaspoon
Salt to taste
Sugar- 1-2 teaspoon (optional)
mustard Oil – 3 table-spoon
Wash and wipe clean Karondas. Take fruit which is not bruised or damaged.
Slit the fruit in longitudinal halves and discard the seeds.
Place it in water. Cut green chillies to any size you wish.
Heat a heavy bottom pan and add mustard oil to it. Bring it to smoking point and turn off the gas. Add mustard, nigella and cumin seeds and let them splutter. Add fenugreek seeds and let it turn a slight golden in color.
Dry roast coriander seeds and fennel and grind them coarsely. Some people prefer to grind them smooth.
Add the chopped green chillies and garlic pods slit in halves along with the karonda fruit to the crackling mixture and stir well. Keep the flame low.
Add turmeric powder, and other spices along with salt.
Stir so that the fruit is covered properly with the spices. Add the sugar. Stir again and turn off the gas.
Let the mixture cool at room temperature and then bottle it in an air tight jar.
Your pickle is ready to eat.