POEMS: 3/5 THEME: 4/5 RHYTHM AND RELATABILITY: 3/5 OVERALL: 3.5/5
As the years roll by, I find myself enjoying poetry more and more. I am looking for them, mostly seeking them on Kindle Unlimited (of which I have a yearly subscription). While I do come across new talent every year, even to this day, some of the most amazing poems that I have read by contemporary Indian poets remain Why I Scream in Verse at the World by Isha Snehal, Jo Tum Kaho by Prashant V Srivastava, and Episodic Poetry: Flashes of Thought by Nishant Gang.
I recently had the chance to pick yet another poetry collection by a Bengali poet. Flowers in the Sunshine by Sarbajit Roy had me interested at the very beginning. Why? Because it spoke of nature and its unbounded beauty. Read on to know more about the book and about my experience of reading it.
What is the book all about?
Flowers in the Sunshine is a collection of 54 poems that dabble in varied themes. While some of them predominantly speak of nature and its splendid beauty, others reflect upon abstract, historical, and other themes. The poems were written over a long period and were recently compiled by the author in a book form.
The varied themes
Since this is a collection of poems written over a long period, it is most likely to be varied in its theme and scope. As such, the book touches upon many different themes. Many poems talk of nature and its sublime beauty. The Lonely Tree, Twilight, Flowers in the Sunshine, My Window, The Path Through the Woods, O Flower, The Riverbank, and Dewdrops are a few that are dedicated to nature and its many wonders.
Some others are written around the hustle and bustle of daily life. For example, The Village Road is about the carefree life of a village girl, who lives amidst the beauty of nature.
Some others narrate the ugly realities of the world that we inhabit. Conquerors of a fractured world talks of street urchins and scavengers who rely on garbage dump to survive the daily struggle that is their life. The Little Princess is another poem that revolves around a similar subject.
Some others talk of abstract themes. These include Silence, Discovery, The Essence of Life, The Flow of Time, The Mind, and The Footsteps of Eternity.
Some poems talk of places and characters. The Local Bazaar recounts the buzzing activities at a crowded local market. While The Old Barber, The Little Princess, and The Elderly Lady speak of unique people who had captured the author’s imagination.
Last but certainly not least are poems that have historical and mythological themes. They speak of ancient cultures and civilizations. These include Noble Goddess, Egypt Forever, and Atlantis. The Eternal Smile speaks of Monalisa and her surreal smile, while Flowers of Sorrow describes the tragic tale of a legendary romance that is as rooted in history as it is in mythology. The Veiled Rebecca is also of a similar theme.
Some poems that touched my heart
For me, My Window is one of the most relatable poems in the lot. Just like the author witnesses splendid scenes unfold right outside his window and revels in their natural beauty, I too was once fortunate enough to have such a window. Where, every day, nature’s vivid paintings would emerge right in front of my eyes, and these would bring me immense joy. Quoting a few lines from the delightful poem –
“Window of my mind, window of my heart,
Through your hallowed portals, this self sets sail,
To world of bliss does it blessedly depart.”
Egypt Forever is another poem that spoke to me in more ways than I could have ever expected. Having witnessed the majestic sights that speak of the glorious past of ancient Egyptians, I could relive those wonderful memories from my own travel diary. With each line that the poet wrote, I went back to all the arresting sights that had left me speechless.
Be it the exalted beauty of the Karnak temple or the vast desolate stretches of the Valley of Kings. The glory of its ancient rulers, Tutankhamun, Hatshepsut, Thutmosis, and Ramses, is still spoken by its timeless monuments.
Kolkata by Night is a poem that talks of the bustling and chaotic beauty of Kolkata. The colonial heritage and the Victorian past juxtaposed with the frenzied bustle of city life is aptly captured by the poet. The intellectual discourses of The Coffee House, the tacit grandeur of the Howrah Bridge, and the cacophony of street hawkers are all captured in the poet’s vivid work.
The Flowers of Sorrow is another beautiful poem that narrates a tragic tale seeped in history and mythology. How a beautiful princess of the land fell in love with a great god but alas her love story was never meant to be.
The Lost River is another poem that I loved reading. Having read an investigative and historical book by the same name (The Lost River by Michel Danino), I thoroughly enjoyed the author’s reverential enigma towards the legendary river. With multiple references to historical, mythological, and Vedic literature, the poem is a definite treat to read.
What makes it different?
What I love about this collection is how it also has poems that revolve around history, mythology, and art. Many poems reflect the poet’s enthusiasm for such themes. And this is something that I haven’t seen many Indian poets attempt.
In the end
In the end, Flowers in the Sunshine is a collection of 54 poems that all talk of different things and have varied themes. It is a collection that predominantly explores nature and its many wonders. Written lucidly, using rich and eloquent language, the poems are emotionally expressive.
Pick the book if
- You are looking for a versatile collection of poetry.
- You are looking for beginner-level poetry.
- You enjoy poetry that uses rich language.
- You are looking for poems that explore different themes.
- You enjoy poetry about nature and its various marvels.
Skip the book if
- You are an avid reader of poetry.
Can’t wait to read it? Buy your copy of Flowers in the Sunshine using the link below.