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The Sound of Wings

Vassilis Vitsaxis

By Margaret Chatterjee
Arnold-Heinemann, 2014, pp. 79, Rs. 20.00

By Lakshmi Kannan
Writers Workshop, Kolkata, 2014, pp. 43, Rs. 10.00

VOLUME III NUMBER 1 July/August 1978

When a few months ago I had the chance to come across the poetry of Margaret Chatterjee (The Sandalwood Tree) I was so deeply impressed, not only by her talent and skill as a poetess but also by her grasp of the various contemporary social and ageless philo­sophical problems reflected in her verses, that I made a point to meet her in person and find out more about her. Well, Margaret Chatterjee was not a new comer in the realm of Letters in India; but then I was! Holding a chair of philosophy for twenty years in Delhi University, she had given her country and the world at large, several scholarly books dealing with matters of her professional field of interest and was also well known and appreciated as an important contemporary poetess, whose verses were repeatedly published and applauded, not only in English but also in Bengali translations. A multi-talented personality indeed; a human being with a brilliant mind and a warm heart. Her newest collection The Sound of Wings includes some poems, already published in previous collections and many others which are part of a more recent crop from the rich fields of her heart. Her skill as an artist, her command over the delicate technique of poetic creations is perfectly matched with her deep insight into the human, social and philosophical predicaments which very often become the sou1’Ce of her inspira­tion. Her imagery is both original and impressive.  ... Packed                                   As tight as a healthy child's head is packed with mischief ... ‘                                                    The Spring   One day the human landscape Will be beautiful The sound no longer Hold the rusty stain of blood                                           To Pablo Neruda When ... No human voice can sing ……….. The small seeds of the cassia tree Sing aloft in the wind                                        The Cassia Tree   She sculpts, she paints, she sings with words; she even dances in the rhythmic pattern of her stanzas. The deep aesthetic enjoyment which flows from her poetry has something special, very difficult to express, though immediately felt; a Rasa in the largest acception of the word. The sandalwood which only when most bruised Can fragrant be                                   The Sandalwood Tree   Only from the root You said, can a tree Ignite with blossom                                  The Tree   The poetess is not dwelling in the clouds. She is aware of the problems of humanity at large and expresses her feelings about them with vigour and ...

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