Gayatri Devi talks about three volumes of poetry by Prathap Kamath and shares a critical commentary on a selected cross section of his poems from 2012-2019.
In the poem “Settlement” (Black Spring 2019), Prathap Kamath paints the following scene to us: the clamor and cacophony of a group of mynah birds on a portia tree give way to a muezzin’s call for prayer from a nearby mosque. As the two distinct, mismatched sounds converge, we are invited to switch our senses from sound to that of sight. In the final stanza, the poet sees what the birds do:
it seems, the futility
of a quarrel,
neck each other in
little erotic pecks
and make a flowing
arch towards the sun. (“Settlement”)