This review is from: Quaking Cantos: Nepal Earthquake Poems (Paperback)
Yuyutsu Sharma ’s Quaking Cantos leaves me in awe. How is the poet able to get so deeply inside this horrific natural disaster and make it become the reader’s personal experience? How is he able to write with tenderness and beauty, as well as with anguish and sadness, painting with his own inimitable brush of words and observations what certainly was tearing at his own heart.?
Sharma writes of the destruction as he describes what he has seen--
Tethered to an electric pole…”
from Quake Relief, a poem in which the word, ‘tug’ is used often. And tug is what it does to this reader’s heart. The simple lamb becomes symbolic, its need for survival after the quake representing all of Nepal.
And in Seven Things that Caused the Quakes, Sharma touches on traditional beliefs and superstitions and takes us to the 21st century’s newest gods:
“the earth changed
side in her sleep…”
“But they did not listen
lost as they were
in their virtual worlds,
iPads, iPhone Facebook, Twitter.
They killed it
and they threw it
in the Sunkosi river…”
“From its insulted eyes
it shot a curse,
bringing the mountains
And from the Epilogue, 3, we return to the animal world,
“a dead horse
being pulled uphill
by a muscular mountain man.”
And in 8, from the Epilogue, this stunning question:
“On whose side
are you, poet?”
These are poems that will put you beside the poet as he surveys the destruction and seeks words to convey his emotions. Read this book and discover how successfully he has done so.