Vignettes of a South African Township called Mdantsane

Saturday, April 30, 2011

The Poetry of Liu Xiaobo


One Letter Is Enough

for Xia

one letter is enough
for me to transcend and face
you to speak

as the wind blows past
the night
uses its own blood
to write a secret verse
that reminds me each
word is the last word

the ice in your body
melts into a myth of fire
in the eyes of the executioner
fury turns to stone

two sets of iron rails
unexpectedly overlap
moths flap toward lamp
light, an eternal sign
that traces your shadow.

Published in PEN America
Watercolor Drawing by Amitabh Mitra

Sunday, April 24, 2011

Poetry and Art - Exhibiting at Medical School, Warwick, UK


International Symposium on Poetry and Medicine, 7 May 2011
Warwick UK

Medicine, Art and Poetry has been together since the time of Hippocrates and the History of Medicine is abundantly endowed with examples of Art, Literature and Poetry.

Renowned medical journals like Lancet and the British Medical Journal (BMJ ) have published scholarly articles on Medicine and Poetry.The 2011 International Symposium on Medicine and Poetry to be held at the Medical School at Warwick, organized by the University of Warwick would be focusing on the role of Poetry in the field of Medicine with a special mention on HIV.

I have 6 published poetry books to my credit and have been involved in Art and Poetry since last 20 years.

My Art and Poetry dealing with my trauma work in the Cecilia Makiwane Hospital, Mdantsane has been accepted for viewing at this conference.

The same art on the township of Mdantsane has been published as a coffee table book titled Mdantsane Breathing and has been reviewed by Daily Dispatch.

This is the first time that Art and Poetry from a township hospital of South Africa would be exhibited at a Medical School in UK.

Mdantsane goes to Warwick, UK.

Thursday, April 21, 2011

Mxolisi Nyezwa


For days I looked for my poems
for days I looked for my poems in the streets,
and since I could not find them,
light fell like a flower on the lonely square.
the light sounded the drum of a thud.
beauty came groveling forward
and children went for days
without food.

Mxolisi Nyezwa

Pastel Drawing by Amitabh Mitra

Sunday, April 17, 2011

Jiwaji Club, Gwalior


Jiwaji Club, Gwalior is situated close to the Palace and the Medical College. The area is called as Katora Tal I believe it should be one of the numerous mansions and palaces gifted to the community by the royal family of Gwalior. I was not a member of the club but I did happen to visit as a guest a number of times. This club reminds me of the Saturday Club in Kolkata and the Planters Club in Darjeeling, all having the same colonial architecture.

According to the club web site, it was named as the Elgin Club and was established by the former British Regent in 1898. The Late Jiwaji Rao Scindia gave the club to the people of Gwalior in 1936. Since then it has been known as Jiwaji Club.

Watercolor and Ink Drawing by Amitabh Mitra

Saturday, April 16, 2011

Shinde Ki Chawni, Gwalior


shinde ki chaawni
buffalos sleep opposite haridwar’s sweet shop
oblivious of people, traffic....
in a summer when tar looks different
and rivers of people slackened
to beating khus songs
somewhere there
in that river unheard of
we had looked up
to a sky often
where we lost our
once sudden breath
in a summer
on another night
when a skin wrapped the floor
we found resilience
in our tongues
waking to another
or did we ever
wake up.

Poem and Watercolor on a polished paper by Amitabh Mitra

Art and poem inspired from the music of Gustavo Santaolalla in the movie Dhobi Ghat