Book Reviews

Sulochana's Imprints: Impressions of Beauty of life

“Imprints” is an excellent anthology of beautiful poems by Sulochana Narayanan, an academician by profession, from Kerala. With a dedication to her Appa (father) and invocation to Lord Ram, the anthology showcases her fascination with nature and her keen observation of ‘general things’ of life. Besides, the book is also studded with gems of incisive haikus, diamante poems, Acrostic poems, Elevenie poems (German Elfchen), Gogyohka poems, chain verse etc. which reflect her profundity of creative expression.

Sulochana Narayanan's creative depth and craftsmanship is perceptible in the very first poem ‘Butterfly’. This metaphoric poem is short yet is enriched in glittering images such as  ‘ornament of nature’, ‘colourful dress’, ‘dark and light shades’. With her aesthetic sense the poet colours her thoughts in the beauty of the butterfly:

Our thoughts are like a butterfly wherein
Memories colour it with different shades
Some are dark and bitter
Whereas some are sweet
We all love to spread the sweet memories.

In ’Dove’, the poet is all praise for God for His beautiful creation, symbolized by this lovely bird. Her use of simile is excellently expressive of the essence of the poem. Similarly , in another poem ‘Silvery Night’, the poet personifies night as a well ornamented bride whose ‘ageless’ and ‘adorable’ beauty is appealing to all.

The poet dives into the pied beauty of nature and its variegated  yet beautifying movements and fetches out the colourful nuggets of motivation and inspiration for people as we find in her poem ‘A Dive in Colour’—

Mind as a butterfly flutter
Forgetting the worries in reality
Surrendering oneself to beauty
The innate capacity of an artist.

Some of other nature-centric poems, though short, are remarkably terse and aglow with beautiful images culled from nature and contain deep philosophy.  Among such poems  'Rose', 'Life', 'Sparks of Sea', 'Evolve' , 'Dreams' etc. deserve special mention as these poems highly speak  not only the beauty but also the philosophy of life, expressed through the objects of nature, almost functioning as evocative metaphors and tenors.

Her poetry is also dotted with ‘leaves’ of green thoughts and expression. The poem    “Soliloquy of a Plant” is reflective of her ecological concerns. Personifying the plant, an object of nature, she highlights not only the beauty and bounty but also immense significance of nature it offers to us, apart from making the world a better place to live in-

Colourful splash with my bloom
To drive away the gloom
I withstand every disaster
I overcome like master
Mankind cut me down ruthless
Making me feel worthless
I go on forever spreading my green
Always fresh and evergreen.

Another poem “Hues of Nature” reinstates aesthetic power of nature presenting its magnificent picture- snow-capped mountains, ‘silvery flow of water’, ‘lush green’, ‘blooming of buds’, ‘silvery moon and her starry consort’ , to mention a few. She calls nature ‘a polychromic painting of the divine’. She sums up-

Pristine beauty of nature
Rainbow, a ray of hope
Enduring healer of mind
A marvelous heavenly earth.

In “My Own Self” she proclaims herself to be a lover of nature who enjoys the pied beauty of nature.

She, in her “A Child’s Journey”, expresses her experience of attaining ‘motherhood’ accentuating the growth of her child from ‘birth’ to the age of ‘adulthood’ and being a mother. The poem is imbued with motherly affection towards her child and her ’bright future smiles’. The theme of feminine sensibility is carried forward in her short poem “Woman” encapsulating the ‘divergent roles’ she plays-

Chubby, cheeky girl
Lighting the lamp as wife
Embodiment of motherhood
Loving and caring daughter
Without her there is a void
She is a cactus
Tough and soft
Marvelous creation of God.

The collection also contains some remarkable tributary poems such as “Feast for Eyes’, a tribute to the well-known painter Raja Ravi Varma, and “Swami the Charisma’, a tribute to Swami Vivekananda. The former is a peep into the artistic and aesthetic world while the latter takes us into the world of spirituality and metaphysics.

In addition, the collection has also poems written ‘on general things’ of life, which are, in fact, particularly significant in terms of their relevance; from realistic point of view as they move from happiness of “Reunion” of lovers to the grief or sorrow of “Lament of a House”, from “Lovely Summer” to “whispering Nights”, presenting “Euphoric Radiance” in the darkness of life, and thus taking us to “her wonder land” aglow with ‘an aura of aurora’, ‘a radiance of plethora’, ‘an astral with a silvery glow’. Brilliant use of metaphors and ornamented epithets, as seen, adds a new dimension to her poetic world adjectifying numerous nouns of poetic writing. With her tempting expression the poet transports us ‘through the galaxy’ to the poetic city of luminosity; from “A Journey into Space’ to “A Journey into Self- from the objective world of observation to the subjective world of experience. She makes a balance between thoughts and actions, words and deeds. Words appearing on the back cover highlight this declaration-

Strolling along the sea shore
Deep imprints on the salty shore
Zephyr glides over me
Arousing within me like buzzing bee
Contemplation about life
How it changes and drives
We are all like equilibrist
Balancing not to fall without twist.

Her cosmopolitan outlook with elements of humanism also finds a brilliant expression in her poetry. She tends to be a votary of equality in society and virtues in life. She envisions “The Dawn” with ‘world of righteousness and equality’ as against the ‘present scenario ruled by virus’ of violence of all sorts.

To sum up, Sulochana Narayanan’s ‘Imprints’ leaves an indelible imprint on the mind of a reader with her poetic musings and scintillating expressions dealing with beauty of nature and life alike.

04-Feb-2023

More by :  Bhaskaranand Jha Bhaskar

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