While I was writing my article What is Shaped Poetry, I was searching the internet for more information and I stumbled upon this website, written by Rajlakshmi, a woman from India who loves to write shaped poetry, which is mostly referred to as Concrete Poetry.
I was very impressed with the poems she had written and asked her permission to use one of her shaped poems in the article I just mentioned above. I got her permission right away and she was very pleased that I liked her poems.
That brought me to the idea of doing an interview with her, because I had never met a poet who wrote shaped poetry like she did. I asked her and she agreed and gave me permission to use whatever photo or poem I needed from her websites. Well, that was at the beginning of last year. Real life got in my way and in December 2013, while recovering from my hip operation, I thought it was time to look up the interview and start a new article, to let you meet an extraordinary poetess.
Copyright text, if not mentioned otherwise: Titia Geertman
Copyright photos and poems: Rajlakshmi Hati Boruah. You’re not allowed to use her photos and/or poetry in any way.
Interview with Rajlakshmi Hati Boruah
I asked some questions and she answered them.
I really loved to work on this interview and I decided that her beautifully written shaped poetry should find their place in between the questions. I know you will enjoy them as much as I did and still do. They bring a whole new view on writing poetry and who knows, they might inspire you too.
Writing shaped poetry isn’t that easy, I have tried it myself sometimes in a very basic way. What Rajlakshmi does is much more complicated, playing with the size of the letters, different typography and sometimes color.
Don’t look at the shape alone, but actually read what she writes within the shape. They’re just beautiful poems.
Name: Rajlakshmi Hati Boruah, Age: 28,
Country: India, but recently moved to Australia
Question 1: What do you do for a living?
I am a software engineer, mostly working as a Java Developer. Yeah quite a nerd I am 🙂
Question 2: Do you live in a city, town or village?
I’m originally from India, but I have recently moved to Australia, so yes I am living in a city.
Question 3: When did you start writing poetry?
I used to write for school magazines and as a part of home assignments but it was only 6 years ago did I started writing seriously, explored different forms of poetry and did my own research on techniques and styles of writing poems.
Question 4: Why did you start writing poetry?
I find it an excellent medium of expressing thoughts and love the way it can be interpreted in so many ways. Since I am quite a reserved person, I was drawn to poetry as it provided me a podium to vocalize my thoughts.
Question 5: What attracts you in the different forms of poetry?
The Challenge!!! It’s tough to limit thoughts in syllable count and rhyme. I just love to take up this challenge and define my imagery in a restricted form. This is quite addictive too.
Question 6: What form(s) of poetry do you like most?
Shape Poetry or Calligrame is my favorite. Other than that I love writing Monchielle, Cascade and Terza Rima
Question 7: Do you write on a daily base?
Nope, not every day. Not until I am so inspired and overwhelmed that it drives me nuts until I come up with a poem.
Question 8: What inspires you?
I don’t have any specific muse but usually Songs, pictures, people and memories inspire me.
Question 9: Have you ever published your work besides the internet?
Yes, one of my shape poetry (Goodbye) got published in a collection of short stories called Lovelets.
Note author: The only reseller of this anthology I could find is called Purushottam Bookstore.
Question 10: Anything else you want my readers to know?
Believe in your dreams,
as they mirror you
and they do come true.
Thank you for giving me this opportunity.
Thank YOU, Rajlakshmi
Thank YOU Rajlakshmi, for sharing your passion with us. I’m sure your poetry brings joy to a lot of people all over the internet.
Your website The Poetry Wagon, will inspire everone who visits it, one way or other.
Not only are you a great poet, but I do love your photos too.