Words of wisdom
Manju Joshi

Wanderings with Poetry
by Dilip Sankarreddy. Peacock Books. Pages 98. Rs 125.

Wanderings with Poetrydilip Sankarreddy is a marketeer and a technologist. As a poet, his first collection entitled Song of a Bard and Other Poems is about things that one believes but which never really exist and they continue to reside in the psyche of a man. The poet here accepts that this collection is a result of his strong urge to articulate his muse. For him, there are certain things that exist in reality but are considered as mere abstractions.

Wanderings with Poetry is his second collection of poems. Outwardly, what might appear as scattered thoughts of a wanderer trying to find a meaningful existence of his life is actually a comprehensive account of his reflections on life and its varied aspects. Poetry here is garbed in words of practical wisdom. The theme is multi-faceted, including existence, birth, death, love, lust, nature, wealth and poverty.

No titles have been assigned to the poems. This world for the poet seems to have gone out of tune. Caught up in the existential dilemma of life, he also gives a reflection of what happens beyond death. Old age is like a tired bird that needs rest. There is an innate desire to meet the Almighty. The futility of possession and obsession by mankind and the how and why of creation are discussed all through.

There are poems wavering between love and faithlessness. Love is asked to be patient and lust is taught to love. "Rather I taught her music/playing her body like a lute." Love poems are marked with innocence and beauty of feminine charms. The poet persona finds himself enthralled by the beauty of his beloved and he evolves from a state of lustfulness to that of pure love that he compares to the great churning of the milk of ocean to form Amrutham. The poet rejoices at the realisation of true love and compares it to the showers of rain that remind him of his beloved.

The clever and rotten world of mankind stands in sharp contrast to that of blissful nature. The poet endeavours to sing about the blessing that life is and has no intention to sing of the glories of warriors or statesmen. Mankind is threatened by religion, poverty, caste, colour etc. There are poems full of despair. Life in negative shades does not leave him untouched. The fort built by a king is a symbol of his pride and comfort; whereas for a poor, it is a matter of hardships and inconvenience.

The poems are a result of the poet’s need to decipher hidden and unexplained things. The very simplicity and brevity of expression lends it a great charm. The lines are precise, more so, in the form of aphorisms. It is a must read for those who intend to learn truths of philosophical nature without touching thick books. The poet inspires us to understand the world and give a meaning to an otherwise meaningless existence.