One looks askance at attempts, in longish paeans palmed off as
critiques by Sheobhushan Shukla and Shobha Bajpai, to place
Tripathi in the same league as Wordsworth, Eliot, Hardy, Tagore
et al. In sheer imagery and vision Tripathi is no match to
Wordsworth or Eliot, and has miles to go before one could even
consider him a poet of note. Eliot came up with telling everyday
images relating to the society of his times, while Tripathi is
still struggling with his prosody. One is only amused at Bajpai’s
attempts to depict Tripathi as an avant-garde poet. She waxes
eloquent about the "metallic clarity" (?!) of his
Bajpai also places
Tripathi on a par with Gandhi, Ram Mohun Roy, Tilak etc. These
days it is fashionable to belittle idols and icons, especially
when they are dead, and such acts please the current rulers.
Gandhi, even if we commit the sacrilege of taking away the halo
of a mahatma from him, electrified an inert nation into a
cohesive force – without resorting to bellicosity or
inflammatory language. Whenever he went on a protest fast in
some remote corner of India frisson ran through the subcontinent
and sent the Whitehall into a tizzy. He lived by his convictions
and died for them.
Good poetry needs
no vindication. Bajpai and Rupa & Co have surely gone
overboard in promoting a not-so-accomplished politician-poet. To
quote from Tripathi’s Still Remains, Masked faces
like mountains/Have sunk in deep sea-beds/And now the dwarfs and
pigmies (sic)/Are roaming with high heads.
The 7 Day
by Dexter Davis.
Book World, Ambala Cantt. Pages iv+214. Rs 150.
No pain, no
palm; no thorns, no throne; no gall, no glory; no cross, no
Penn (1644–1718), English founder of Pennsylvania.
politician Edmund Burke once remarked, "The only infallible
criterion of wisdom to vulgar minds – success". To seek
the sweet smell of success and popularity is a common human
inclination. One looks for a mantra that would take one to the
top of the social ladder in no time. This is the age of
get-rich-quick morality. Of cut-throat competition. Of ‘arriving’
on the social scene– if possible – in the diapers-age
you choose to become successful, certain factors remain
constant. One of these is acquiring a positive image. Whether
you are good or evil is irrelevant as long as you succeed in
getting what you want. For this you require a sweet tongue and
effective vocabulary. Dexter Davis provides you all in this
volume. Well-chosen words can help you in fulfilling your quest.
The author terms these words as ‘success words’, which
enhance your knowledge, personality and ability – in one week
Read Well and
by Owen Webster. Arora’s Book World, Ambala Cantt. Pages
350. Rs 125.
Do you remember
the British poet Christina Rossetti’s lines, "Better
by far you should forget and smile/ Than that you should
remember and be sad"? Of course, these lines highlight
relationships. But for scholars and general readers it is
important to recall what they read.
But, often while
reading, one’s mind begins to stray a bit. This happens even
with an unputdownable thriller or comedy. Unless we realise that
reading is an art, it will fail to give us pleasure and for some
it may become a chore. Owen Webster analyses the causes of bad
reading and provides easy-to-follow solutions. Chapters like
Word Recognition, Sense and Structure, Understanding etc are