It took me a while to get into the poetry of B.Narsing Rao, because this poet needs you to slow down a lot to follow him on the steps he takes into the magnificent world of inspiration. Certainly, it is not the first of his endeavors, because he has in the past read, written, directed films and won many awards. Therefore, I suspect that poetry must have been a secret love, a kind of love you admit only when you have nothing more to lose and you just give in to the temptation of telling the world your most precious and most inner thoughts and secrets. This kind of confession is the deepest and most meaningful of all, this is why he has very carefully produced a screenplay of poetry. Every one of his poems is like a short film and the whole collection is a homage to life itself.
This poetry book of B.Narsing Rao consists of 25 poems, which are leading the reader to a retreat into nature, going back to treasured memories, as well as taking them to a philosophical thinking approach to life and death. He has carefully grafted a path where he picks up the reader and then takes him very slowly, through the whole book on a quest of an internal journey to self-awareness, real treasures and the meaning of life. But that’s not all, poetry itself is a special love that some people never confess, some confess it very late because it shows all the sensitivity that runs through the person who writes it. Poetry is a declaration of the soul, its deepest depths which most of us rather keep a secret, like a very special love affair, or a lost opportunity to love. Right from the first poem B.Narsing Rao speaks to the reader from his point of view, which does have a very personal note. His poetic voice is clearly inspired by his life experience. He takes a calm approach to every theme discussed in this book, slowing the readers mind down and altering his and her perception in the first few poems, so that he can slowly introduce later on more and more of his view. B.Narsing Rao starts with a sense of love and respect in the very first poem which reflects on the Genesis of Life itself. With this instant connection he melts the heart of the reader in a very simple, yet very natural way and gets his attention for the rest of the book:
Man, meeting woman Is nothing but universal. Sacred and pure Ever since the very beginning. ... Their hearts shall melt fusing into one... ...The communion That secretes a healthy relationship Should never be doubted; For, it is so very natural And never to be forced upon.
This is a love poem which at the same teaches very discretely that love “should never be forced” because it cannot be forced anyway. It comes naturally to the people and they accept it as is. It is perceived more like an observation than a teaching. The book is full of such subtle and deep messages throughout. The reader gets the feeling like there is the voice of a wise man talking but without putting any pressure on the reader.
“...I can write,/ paint, compose music and dance... To see invisible things, / to know the unknown, / immaterial things. Isn’t that what life is all about?”
It is a friendly walk on the very ground of human nature, where the poet is not afraid to get his feet soaked in the truth of life and death, in the circle of life. The poet’s focus is on what brings comfort in his life, where he gained happiness and inspiration from. All elements of nature are playing a big part in most of the poems of this poetic collection: the air, the birds the flowers, the landscapes or even the sky and the orbiting planets and stars absorb all his attention and he sees the real treasures of life in nature’s beauty and in precious moments spend with loved ones:
“There is so much wealth around us, the rising Sun in the morning, the glorious Sunset, the innocence in the smile of a child, the affectionate touch of the elders. Nothing can be more precious...”
The way the poet writes is very simple but it touches the reader very deeply. At times it seems almost familiar, because he steps into connotations that remind of the great poets of last century like the German poet Goethe when he talks about the laws of nature:
“...The laws of Nature, are so very exciting, every morning is a new one; never shall it repeat itself, as what has gone, shall never be back; only to be fresh and every second...
...Looking at it all carefully, There is never any monotony, I only have to look for spaces in between, As it leaves enough room for innovation...”
The poet is looking everywhere for new and exciting poetic inspiration, even in problematic situations, which life throws at people unexpectedly, or unwanted.
“The tragedy is that we all desire to be supreme; Greater even than Nature, A game from which we will never win, For, some victories, Are followed by a series of defeats, Which will never be digested; A duel between man and man, Or between man and Nature, Continues day after day...”
Friendships and relationships are a big theme in the collection, they are the most treasured value in many poems, which are “giving our soul the joy of living” and reflecting on the way the people could actually perceive time as a fountain of youth:
“The wheel of time is in perpetual motion, Our memories Past and present, Follow its rhythm, Stored in every corner, To make us younger and younger.”
In the poem “Another face of Heaven” it is the sense of passion and happiness which gives the poet the most thrill:
“Happiness is exhilarating, and joy is divine... Being passionate... the heart will beat wildly... eager to spread the message of joy, As you are, a devoted servant of humanity.”
Even in the poems he doesn’t talk about love there is the scent of it in the air, with the details he describes nature’s beings, the insects, or the landscape. He fills his poetic canvases with great pictures like the “dance of the whispering wind” or the butterflies which “inject life into everything they touch” “the green carpet of grass” and the “silky flowers” which are swaying in the wind, in the Garden of Eden, where birds give concerts... He captures the simplicity in all its glory. It is a conscious decision! Not because the poet doesn’t know about the raging fires across the globe or the troubles which man inflicts upon himself, but he wants to emphasize the beauty and the simplicity of nature but also the responsibility man has to protect the earth and all its creations, which is giving humankind a living ground without asking anything in exchange.
Living in the depths of our own world... As life is a challenge, And living up to one’s expectations, Is nothing short of a Herculean task... Look outside... A divine world around you,
Just feel it For you are blessed.”
Hints of Greek Mythology show that this poet has done his homework. This isn’t the work of a young person... It’s the work of a mature individual with a personal approach. It is the work of someone who appreciates the balance, who appreciates the connections and who appreciates the work itself. The poet very well knows how to distinguish the talent from the experience, and that true success means even more work after the inspiration has struck you with all her might and you can’t avoid but take the pencil and get it down to paper. In the poem “Treasure” he starts explaining his process:
When the best ideas come, / keep them well, they come out without warning, / but fly away like a bird.”
In another poem, he reflects on how much work there is actually to be done to be successful:
“So much thought ... So much preparation Before I could play with words. Art has embraced me But what consoles me now Would never have been, Without what remains hidden... So much hard work.”
B.Narsing Rao is directing poetry like a movie, smiles and tears, phases of thinking, active and relaxing motives are following one another, making it always interesting. We see sometimes that one kind of art is spilling over to the other. A composer who just looks at verses for most of his life starts at the age of 70 plus writing his poetry book. Other people paint. And then they decide they want to write, because when they get the idea they can’t pull out the canvas to paint, but they can have a pad and a pen and write something down. B.Narsing Rao is putting a whole movie into every
poem he attempts. Every one of the poems has an introduction, a highlight and a happy or sad ending. The reader gets pulled in. And, all the clever philosophical statements are well prepared before and set into scene with great ease.
B.Narsing Rao takes you on a poetic journey through his perception of Garden Eden, bringing consciously light and hope into our troubled lives. It is almost as if you are watching a movie, taking you from the start to the end through highs and lows of a couple which starts its life together. As the poetic journey of B.Narsing Rao’s poetic career continues, I think that the readers can hope for much more to come. To put it in the words of the poet:
“Dreams are only promises of the future...”