Today I am sharing a poem by a very famous Indian poet – Kamala Das.
“Kamala Suraiyya (born Kamala; 31 March 1934 – 31 May 2009), also known by her one-time pen name Madhavikutty and Kamala Das, was an Indian English poet and littérateur and at the same time a leading Malayalam author from Kerala, India. Her popularity in Kerala is based chiefly on her short stories and autobiography, while her oeuvre in English, written under the name Kamala Das, is noted for the poems and explicit autobiography. Her open and honest treatment of female sexuality, free from any sense of guilt, infused her writing with power, but also marked her as an iconoclast in her generation.
Award-winning author Kamala Das’s first book, Summer in Calcutta is a collection of poignant poems that talks mainly of love, betrayal and the resultant pain. These poems are hallmarked by its candid treatment of love and sex and the author’s quest for self. She abandoned the certainties offered by an archaic, and somewhat sterile, aestheticism for an independence of mind and body at a time when Indian poets were still governed by “19th-century diction, sentiment and romanticised love.””
Here is a poem from this book.
Love by Kamala Das
Until I found you,
I wrote verse, drew pictures,
And, went out with friends
Now that I love you,
Curled like an old mongrel
My life lies, content,
For me, these simple lines outline the essence of love. I totally get it. Don’t you?