Monalisa with a beard and everyday kitchen utensils for installation art piece. If at one time it would have meant vandalism of art, it is now seen as a movement or even better still an “artistic vision”. If technology, commercialism and globalisation is affecting the world we inhabit to a great extent, can the art world be segregated and isolated from it? So, we find today a whole young generation trying to carve a niche for themselves and in myriad ways, be it through nose and belly piercing, growing long hair, and more importantly, in their different expressionistic movements. Most claim that today’s generation does not possess sensitivity and idealism, and label it the excess and waste generation. But the growing number of young minds devoted to the craft of writing, music, acting, dance and such other visual and non-visual mediums are an indication of the direction and focus with which they are progressing.
The collage of impressionistic ideas, experiences, visuals, ideals and beliefs one sees every day has perhaps prompted Himangshu Prasad Das to pen his thoughts. If he calls himself a Naxal poet in one of his writings, then not for him are the sweet expressions of romance and idealism. So, if earlier Bhupen Hazarika said, Mur preyasik tumi janu dekhisa, Tair uthjuri moure bulua, today poets declare Kambakt ishq. So, expressions change with the growing demands of time and changed mechanisms of relationships, issues, socio-political and artistic movements. Therefore, Himangshu Prasad Das, an alumni of the National School of Drama, chooses to call his collection of poetry presented as a CD – Ai Suwali Ebaar Bhal Pai Saba Neki. For him, the contemporary and the classic collide to create a tapestry where common every day images of “fair and lovely”, “park”, “mobile recharge” juggle to create a bold, raw, passionate, yet sensitive portrait of love. Perhaps in these images, metaphors and symbolism, Himangshu Prasad Das searches for answers to problems of globalisation, commercialisation, of broken down belief systems and values, of lost worlds and of men at the cross-roads. In his title poem Ai Suwali Ebar Bhal Pai Saba Neki, Himangshu, the Naxal poet, is in search of his muse. The rawness, the passion, the sensitivity exists, which is perhaps the signature of Himangshu Prasad Das. He claims the CD of his collection of poems to be almost semi autobiographical, but nowhere does it dissolve to sentimentalism but rather, one gets an approximation of our times, issues, problems, crises and most important of all, it rises above all this and attempts to create a new world order.
Himangshu Prasad Das himself claims that not for him is the ivory tower existence of a poet. If poetry is about the common man’s feelings, emotions, his thoughts and struggles, then it must be spoken in the contemporary, colloquial style. Himangshu is an able and capable actor and director, that’s why his poetry abounds in realistic and everyday sights, sounds, images and metaphors. He does not want poetry to be relegated to libraries and thick volumes, but rather, through his CD, he aims for poetry to be heard in drawing rooms, in cars and most important, in the human minds and hearts. He belongs to the growing band of expressionists in poetry, who desire to break conventions, rhythms, idioms and metaphors to create their own rhythm, idiom and metaphor, which is filled with rawness, passion and sensitivity. With Himangshu Prasad Das’s Ai Suwali Ebaar Bhal Pai Saba Neki to be released in the forthcoming book fair, we hope to have a CD of poetry which echoes thoughts and sentiments which beat in every mind and heart, and will appeal as much to the layman as to the discerning listener.