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Blooming Dale

Good poetry makes of me a bloody fool. This collection affected me much the same way. I wept

Blooming Dale
outlookindia.com
-0001-11-30T00:00:00+0553
Yellow Hibiscus: New And Selected Poems
By Rukmini Bhaya Nair
Penguin Pages: 224; Rs 250
Good poetry makes of me a bloody fool. Rukmini Bhaya Nair’s latest collection affected me much the same way. I wept. A fine poet, seasoned smooth, Rukmini’s Yellow Hibiscus reveals the grandeur of her verse.

Honed at the serrated edge of two cultures quite dissimilar, and ripened with the seasons, Rukmini’s poetry cannot lie idle "in the tranquil square of the senses" but must disturb. She states that history is "a rage of longing... it is the history of women in love". There is the bitterness of knowledge when she says that a "woman wants to be held as a warm creature not a fable".

Then we read of Gomata, Sappho, Gargi, Kali and the nuns, "clicking rosaries in sleepless dormitories".

The reader is embarrassed when tears fill her eyes. Unshed tears well up for those of her kind, her kith, her kin—woman going waste, for centuries, left unutilised and unloved. Then the question gains significance. Is poetry by its very nature meant to disturb?

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