comments: Indian Rain

Sunday, November 21st, 2004

A few comments on “Indian Rain,” a poem in progress by Neha Bawa. At a recent writing group, we had a nice dicussion of Neha’s poem. What stood out to me was the underlying image “for” longing in the piece, brought home by the final line, which is:

Someday I will be home again.

Home in the poem is exotic and erotic in its descriptive suspension, a place with

Drops of silver lolling
on soft white flesh

The past and its images are suspended in memory; but there’s always a suggestion for the “exile” that the light of memory can be corrupted. Is this poem, therefore, a means of “keeping” the memory of home close, a form of active remembering?

Regardless, I’d love to see the author dig past some of the abstractions, as seen here

I have seen days when the clouds rolled in
thick and black as the desert night;
Clouds that made the peacocks sing
and spread their feathers in majestic dance.

Unfortunatly, I don’t understand “majestic dance.” Here the image is arbitrary. We could, in other words, interchange “majestic” for “beautiful” or “amazing.” The poet sees an image remembered, but “majestic” is interpretive rather than experiential. Nobody sees “majestic.”

But what an overall sense that the poem conveys. Neha has a keen sense for the honesty of poetry.


One response to “comments: Indian Rain”

  1. Neha says:

    Thanks, Teach. What intrigues me is the erotic/sensual interpretation of the poem. Certainly, that was not my mindset when writing the poem. It was raining here one day, and I was reminded of the monsoons that I grew up with. I’ve been waiting for a full report on the poem – can’t wait to see what everyone thought of it.