A Different History: the poem and the poet

Listen to the poet reading the poem.

How effective do you find the final two lines of the poem?

Do they find anything amusing in the poem?

The writer:

Sujata Bhatt was born in Ahmedabad, and brought up in Pune until 1968, when she emigrated to the United States with her family. She has an MFA from the University of Iowa, and for a time was writer-in-residence at the University of VictoriaCanada. She received the Commonwealth Poetry Prize (Asia) and the Alice Hunt Bartlett Award for her first collectionBrunizem[1] She received a Cholmondeley Award in 1991 and the Italian Tratti Poetry Prize in 2000. [1] Her translations from the German include Mickle Makes Muckle: poems, mini plays and short prose by Michael Augustin (Dedalus Press, 2007). Bhatt was a visiting fellow at Dickinson CollegePennsylvania and currently works as a freelance writer. She has translated Gujarati poetry into English for the Penguin Anthology of Contemporary Indian Women Poets. Combining both Gujarati and English, Bhatt writes “Indian-English rather than Anglo-Indian poetry.”[2] Her poems have appeared in various journals in the United Kingdom, Ireland, the United States, and Canada, and have been widely anthologised, as well as being broadcast on British, German, and Dutch radio.

Many of Bhatt’s poems have themes of love and violence. She explores issues such as racism and the interaction between Asian, European, and North American culture. Michael Schmidt observed that her “free verse is fast-moving, urgent with narratives, softly spoken. Her cadence is natural, her diction undecorated.”[3] Bhatt has been recognized as a distinctive voice in contemporary poetry. She is, the New Statesman declared, “one of the finest poets alive”.[4]

Bhatt now lives in BremenGermany with her husband, German writer Michael Augustin, and daughter. 

What must have influenced her writings?


Click on this blog link. Read the essay on the poem we have read and leave a comment in the blog.



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