Qaisar Bashir, a wonderful artist, after the success of his debut translation “AKH DOUR” is back with his first collection of 46 poems namely “THE CRY OF WOUNDED SOULS”. The collection is a knowledgeable, useful and affectionately committed work of the poet. He has an unsubdued energy for life. His enthusiasm to write and pour his emotions is exemplary. Being a translator, author, poet and critic, he has proved his mettle in every genre of literature. The usage of poetic ingredients used by the poet shows his mastery over the language and creativity of the poet.
The marvelous artistry is visible in almost every poem. The poet has used hybridized style while writing the poems. There are Haikus, Tankas, Nonets and Fibonacci poems and the collection sums a few poems of traditional style as well. The diction and the content of the poems are going to touch every literature lover in general and the inhabitants of Kashmir valley In particular. The plight and sufferings of the people of poet’s homeland are depicted in a very lucid way. Besides the universality of themes, the poems revolve round themes of braid chopping, rapes, dejection, helplessness, spilled blood that is summed up beautifully in this collection of brilliant artistic excellence. The poet has spoken of resistance, tragedy and sufferings that people have witnessed during the long three decades of deep-rooted conflict, which seems to have entered the psyche of every individual as well as the poet.
Initially, as a poet it may not have been his intention to write the poetry on such subject but the tragedies surrounding the poet seems to have an inescapable and haunting effect which might have resulted this publication. The tragedies, corpses, explosions, killings of innocents, soldiers, and rebellions that form the headings of everyday local dailies and debates in this patch of land might have overwhelmed the poet, and an artist, who witness and see piles of tragedies around is bound to write on the subject which could be easily understood to the readers of “THE CRY OF WOUNDED SOULS”.
The poet has given an indigenous touch of his native language to create an impact of tragedy in one of his poems in an artistic manner:
He rose from his place.
Caught the birdie.
Lightly stroked its feathers.
Paused. And then, muttered:
“shaayed chus pellath aamut… yi chi
Kasheer, ghandu rusti”.
In one of the poems, the poet has drawn a comparison
When I write,
A voice rises
From my soul like foam
On the crest of a wave,
Threshes the strands
Of my being,
and then, retreats and dies
as buds in Palestine.
The revolutionary poems also occupy the content of the poetry where poet seems optimistic about the future of his tragic land and the poem “In memory of Aasifa” freezes the blood of its readers the way tragic incident has been described
“Baba, Baba”, Aasifa continually cried
Till they hit her head with a stone; ah’she died!
The metaphoric use in one of the Fibonacci poem deserves honour and admiration wherein the poet has blamed the neighboring country for its stubbornness
These flowers, to bear
The storm of their stubborn neighbours!
The foreword of the book is written by the poet of international stature Lily Swarn and blurbs by award winning poets like Dr Santosh Bakaya, Vinita Agarwal, and Prof. Hameeda Nayeem is an acknowledgment of appreciation of this wonderful book.
The book deserves a place on each shelf. All poetry lovers must read and feel an insightful and landmark achievement of the poet in assessing the indigenous climate must read it. I wish the poet all the best for his future works and contributions.