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A Sound Advice

Durlabh Singh

"In the beginning was the word "

           The field of language and our auditory sensibility is more vast than we are taught to believe.

           Let us imagine the origin of words and the language. Prehistoric man must have been influenced by the sounds in nature and their reverberations within himself. The sounds in nature are full of energy and vigor. When the man heard the sound of thunder, after a great bolt of lightening, he must have felt awe and tried to convey this to his fellow beings, pointing towards the direction and muttering a sound like"thun." As sound "th" or "thun" carries an explosive sound imitating thunder. Afterwards "thun" became common sound within the group to convey phenomenon of thunder.

           My point being that our language, under its surface, is alive and is connected to all variants of natural sounds carried within our psychic store. Thus slowly these verbal sounds were codified, hieroglyphed [sic] and scripted, and over the periods of time began to loose their original related sensibilities. The coded words were taken for granted and this utilitarian mode of communication lost its initial vigor and energy, resulting in rational abstraction.

           There have been movements in the field of modern poetry to reach that original impetus and this mode is a perpetual fascination for the poets all over the world. The genre of sound poetry has come into being and sometime even dispensing with words, in a sort of oration chant, is employed.

           Poetical art is a many sided exploration. In sound poetry, a poet unconsciously is drawn to fore-mentioned origin of language. He devises sound and picks up appropriate words. It is like listening to music where you do not have to define it with coded gestures or verbal language. We can comprehend it without employing our rational mind of analysis. Similarly a poet picks the appropriate words to convey that sense of lyricism.

           When you recite such poetry, people generally ask "but what does it mean?" and my answer is that it means a lot, only if you could open up your mind. Here in the poem everything is alive. Let us not use our common sense to destroy the truth of poetry and let us not turn our common sense into non-sense.

           I do not work wholly on sound poetry basis but use words in my poetry that underline sound, contents and poetical creations.

           True poetry is a transmutation of our gross consciousness into something more meaningful.

About the Author (click here) © 2002 Durlabh Singh, all rights reserved
 appears here by permission

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