Poetry is something I love to read, but find difficult to review. What the poet wishes to convey might be completely different from what I follow from the poem. And also, you don’t know what attracts you to the book in the first place. When Shalini Samuel shared an update on her publication on a Facebook group, it was the title that intrigued me. A poet’s soul would definitely have a song.
Poetry need not always have depth or words that make us reach for a dictionary. Simplicity works just as easily in a poem. Through Singing Soul, the poet brings that depth in simple words. It had innocence too, and it had the joy of writing a poem. It almost felt like a child has written it. The poem that I love the most is the only of its form in the book. It’s a form that I love to read and write too… a three line haiku. That haiku for me captured a longing for the future, as well as a snapshot of the present. It had a poetic feel in the observation too. Then there’s a poem titled “You and Me”. In its brevity, it expresses love. There are also poems on rain, one in particular that I could visualize with ease. I love the rain, so these poems were some that I could relate to as well. There’s humor in the poems, and one that comes to mind is Aliens.
There are editing mistakes in some poems. Like plurals coming where singular is needed. And though they say poetry has no grammar, some poems would have read much better had there been, I feel.
Read this book of verse for poems filled with innocence and simplicity. It will bring a smile, even if doesn’t wow you beyond words. It was also a pleasure to get the first signed copy of the book from the poet herself.
Title: Singing Soul
Author: Shalini Samuel
Publisher: Omji Publishing House
Price: INR 125
(30th December 2014)