Wednesday, May 23, 2012

TAM poetry workshops, and Happy 4th Birthday, blog!

From October 2011 to April 2012, I was fortunate enough to be part of a series of Text-as-Material poetry workshops organised by the poet, Vivek Narayanan at CSDS, Sarai. These workshops have truly done what they set out to do, that is, taught me to see texts, all kind of texts, as materials for more work. We experimented a lot with "found text". Found text is text taken from anywhere, newspaper reports, interviews, other people's emails, advertisements, finding words from there which, as Vivek says, "do something to you", and seeing how these words written by another can actually be used by you to express something that you might have otherwise found hard to express. Again, as Vivek says, in poetry, discipline can lead to more freedom. For example, writing in form with a specific rhyme scheme and metre can at times help a lot of things emerge which otherwise perhaps may not have. Similarly, found text, as another way of disciplining that helps one find freedom. :-)

Over the course of these workshops, I have begun to see the inter-relationship of all art, of a photograph, a painting, a poem, an advertisement, an email... a poem can emerge out of just about anything. I can translate/adapt a poem into a pictorial visual representation. Experimenting with art work, hindi poetry, translation, in the immensely freeing, creative, and non-judgemental space of the sarai basement was a beautiful experience. and plus, I got to know the loveliest of interesting people, thanks to these workshops, oh so many of them! :-) Looking forward now to the chapbook publication we hope to have in a month or so, although formally TAM is at an end...

And yes, Happy Fourth Birthday, beloved blog! :-) You have survived through many stages of my writing, and I hope you will live to see many more. Amen!