Monday, October 26, 2009

poetry night

I remember falling in love with poetry while reading ee cummings and Shakespeare and Keats over and over again, to really understand the poets and there poetry or just interpret it, over many chais with my teacher and friends. We spent days on one poem, digesting it. Spending hours sitting next to the river, mulling over each verse.
Before that, in school, words had just passed through me. They were just words, thrown at me in a strange language. I had no time to take them in slowly, I had to move over to the next one in my course, only to vomit out everything the next day in my exam.
Tonight took me back to such memories. I was excited to share all of my favourite poems, although, after a while, I felt like one of those people who like the sound of their own voices! I enjoyed sharing them with everyone, but I wish I had talked about them a little more. That I had shared the experiences that went with each one of them.
I enjoyed listening to other’s, too. But I did feel, again, that words were just thrown at me and I had no time to tie them and slowly take them in. I realize I was doing the same to others too.
Poetry, I now understand, is not about the recitation or the rhyming. It is about experiencing.
It was, however, heart warming to see a lot of enthusiasts turning up to share their verses. To find so many people could string their thoughts, so well, into poems. Even that few people generally hanging out at the café also decided to join in.
Still, tonight was important. For many met many new people, many got the space to voice  themselves through their own words or another’s and we all transformed a “public” space into a very warm, intimate space, close enough for energies, thoughts and feelings to connect.

Thursday, October 22, 2009

Sampath 's poetry

A  few Poems that i have written over the years, on various themes, often late in the night, racked by guilt, Loss, Love and all the other  chips and dips issues of life.

Here are a Few of the poems i read out on  our Poetry Night

Gone saw you briefly
Like a firefly glowing
Seeking a thought in
all that darkness.

Who knows where your journey
takes you?
Is there an insect heaven?
What predators prey on you
Will i see you again?
                     Dilip Sampath

Whatever you and i do
is complete, replete with
streamers a party atmosphere
Balloons bursting, emotions extending
our minds expanding, like people
believing in expression a total sublime
Without any inhibitions our sweat mingling,
close to your body, a sudden release
is all we need.
Tense and pretending we try to fit into
our social roles, playing our parts for the first time
and not knowing our lines, daring to cross to
the other side.
The creativity your expressing is beautiful
now,paint a picture of my life.
Alone and free at last to explore
our private past.
                                   Dilip Sampath

city specks - the story of Select Bookshop

The amiable and witty Mr. K.K.S. Murthy, the face and voice of one of Bangalore’s oldest and iconic landmarks took around 20 of us down an enchanting memory lane on a pleasant Saturday evening earlier this month. It was part of the City Specks: Mapping Memories activity of the Jamming through October festival ( organized by Maraa (, a community media collective based in Bangalore

Born in 1930 to a bibliophilic father practising as a lawyer in Kurnool (Andhra Pradesh) who relocated with his family to Bangalore in 1944-’45, Mr. Murthy formally took over Select in 1977. However, he kept learning about the used book trade immensely while choosing, buying and shipping books from dealers and auctioneers in Paris and New York, (during his professional stints in nearby Spain and New Jersey) apart from those in Bangalore, Delhi, Chennai. (With a master’s degree from the Indian Institute of Science, he worked as an aeronautical engineer in Hindustan Aeronautics Limited and later with the Kirloskar group and private firms in the US). 

“Father would visit Bangalore at the mere receipt of a post card from any acquaintance in Bangalore about the arrival/availability of some secondhand books. Katherine Mansfield was among his favourite authors. I have seen people from Kerala carrying and selling books in baskets here”, said Mr. Murthy. His father Mr. K.B.K. Rao (Rao, a suffix acquired for being an Andhraite) who started Select in 1945 in an Irishman’s garage on Museum Road catered to

Thursday, October 15, 2009