Kamala Das

(31 March 1934 – 31 May 2009 / Punnayurkulam, Thrissur District in Kerala)

Summer in Calcutta


What is this drink but
The April sun, squeezed
Like an orange in
My glass? I sip the
Fire, I drink and drink
Again, I am drunk
Yes, but on the gold
of suns, What noble
venom now flows through
my veins and fills my
mind with unhurried
laughter? My worries
doze. Wee bubblesring
my glass, like a brides
nervous smile, and meet
my lips. Dear, forgive
this moments lull in
wanting you, the blur
in memory. How
brief the term of my
devotion, how brief
your reign when i with
glass in hand, drink, drink,
and drink again this
Juice of April suns.

Submitted: Wednesday, March 28, 2012

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  • Bijay Kant Dubey (5/10/2014 11:33:00 PM)

    Summer in Calcutta is not the summer of Calcutta, but the summer feeling of Kamala, who is just after sensuality, madly after love, man-woman relationship. Her summer is one of the bodily summer in which the protagonists act emotionally and abnormally, going after the sun. The gulmohars blooming in summer do not have anything to tempt and charm Kamala, but he summer of the body, the twitches and intrigues of it during the noontime siesta. Sweating and kissing and relishing upon is the thing of deliberation. There is something of The Sun Rising of John Donne in in it. Kamala is but the Lady Chatterley of D.H.Lawrence. To put it ironically, the April sun is like an orange and Kamala after squeezing it taking a glass of orange juice. She is a sexist and her poetry an exercise in sexual enterprise; the dreams of sex and love are bound to give pleasure anybody else who goes through it. Kamala has fallen into a bad company of lovers, readers and critics. (Report) Reply

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