By Ravi Shanker N
Initially, Dalit poetry in English showed the same characteristics and same reasonings of vernacular Dalit literature (with the exception of Malayalam). But, are we witnessing a change? Since these poets mainly operate from metropolises and other urban areas, their concerns primarily revolved around the well-worn images of Dalit oppression as met in the cities.
Laburnum makes Delhi a midsummer day’s dream. This short blossoming is one of the many ways the city makes you fall in love with it again and again. It makes you forget the soaring temperature, the melting asphalt, and the noxious fumes as you stand witnessing the alchemy of these beautiful flowers. The cityscape is nothing less than Monet’s painting.
By Chanchal Kumar
Love After Babel will be remembered as the prime example of a poet’s love letter to language, which can be a reluctant, unyielding beloved. Its appearance in our midst couldn’t have been timelier. We needed a Love After Babel to remind us why Dalit poetry has always been far superior to Brahmin-savarna’s, in other words, the mainstream’s attempts at writing verse, not that we had any doubt to begin with.
By Nishi Pulugurtha
The poems translated from the first volume speak of political alertness in a manner that seems to be ruthless. They voice hope, fear, sarcasm and doom along with destruction and death. Saubhik’s second volume took a long time in making and has poems that use place names and geography to speak of lived in reality of life.
By Poornima Laxmeshwar
When I visit poems from my first book, I see that many of them are also about existential angst. About this clawing search for the real essence of life. The explorations are handled with slightly more finesse in TFM perhaps because I have more experience with the craft now.
By Sabreen Ahmed
The river is a dominant imagery in the recent collection. The river acts as a symbolic repository of historical annals of slavery and hardship borne by his kinsmen from which there is no way of return. In the first poem “Death” from his award winning collection, Our Ancestor Marangburu, the trope of death and the river coexist as a corollary in a predestined inescapable existential closure.
By Jyotsna Dwivedi
It should have noticed the crawling shadows that stopped belonging to ‘people’
– ‘who belong to their own land’.
It should have noticed the fumes rising out of their whispers,
Whimpering ‘what about us, our children, our land’.