Monday 18 July 2022

Bhupender K Bhardwaj

Bhupender K Bhardwaj was born and brought up in Mumbai, India. His debut collection Ebullience and Other Poems was published by Kelsay Books, US (2019). His poems have been published by The Honest Ulsterman, harana poetry, Squawk Back & The Galway Review among others. He was longlisted for The Ginkgo Prize for Ecopoetry 2019, as also The Toto Awards for Creative Writing 2016, and was shortlisted for both The Fish Poetry Prize 2020 and the All India Poetry Competition 2016.

What book(s) are you reading right now?

Books are always a continuing obsession. Instead of reading one book at a time, I prefer operating in a simultaneous framework of sorts wherein books across poetry, cosmology, spirituality and management get juxtaposed to each other in both the spatial and the mental schemas. While there is a looming threat that this can get me blurry-eyed, however, the excitement that gets generated from the exercise of multiple intelligences is immense. So to answer the question, of lately I have been engrossed in reading the mathematical physicist Sir Roger Penrose's Cycles of Time, Frank Wilczek's Fundamentals: Ten Keys to Reality and The Selected Poems of Eugenio Montale.

A book you loved reading at a child.

If I can go back to my earliest days and I thank memory for permitting me this, it has to be Robert Louis Stevenson's Treasure Island. This book opened up an entire world of imaginative possibilities in my mind-- the various cast of characters; pirates, seamen and buccaneers-- together with the sense of adventure embedded in the quest to attain the proverbial pot of the gold.

The first and last books on your bookcase/shelf.

The Princeton Encyclopedia of Poetry and Poetics and The Penguin Dictionary of Science respectively.

A book you have read more than once.

It invariably is The Poetry of Derek Walcott (1948-2013). All the sections of this book are momentous: now full of revelations brimming with an oblique commentary on colonial machinations, now loaded with natural beauty but pulsating with Derek Walcott's purposive epic or narrative genius.

A book with personal resonance.

The Bounty (1997) by Derek Walcott. This is one of those rare and powerful poetry books wherein Walcott's lines rise to a heightened speech and then seem to get rooted as the common courtyard plant. The Bounty offers the reader a cornucopia of technically measured emotions and bucolic scenes but the end result is always delight.

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