Uh. Vinod’s first book of English poetry titled “Paradise” is a clear example of sweetness of composure, simple and straight verse, adaptation of reality in the expression of thoughts and a clear and sincere desire for “Paradise”; nature as it existed around his native place. The helpless choice he, his family and thousands and thousands of other families in his community have had to make, to save their lives and their honor from the religious intolerance and terrorism that have led to an unwanted exodus and to stay away from the birthplaces of the Kashmir Valley. Pain and anguish and the sense of loss of ethos, cultural unity, thousands of years of history, ancestral homes and hearths and above all appropriate climatic largesse obviously weighs heavily on the mind and psyche of the poet, as evidenced by the poetry flowing from his mind with conviction.
Plato said, “Poetry is nearer to vital truth than history.” I think the poet here through his verses has been honestly truthful and straightforward, but through his thoughtful poems he gives voice to so many concerns and emotions of grief, but hope is also reflected throughout.
The poet through his collection has dissected the different stages of life and the environment around his present and his past. He keeps hope alive for resettlement in his beloved native place and cherishes the realignment with elements of nature he knew and was accustomed to from birth and throughout his childhood in his place of birth. origin; the valley of Kashmir which he still desires and rightly calls his own.
An important message that the poet conveys through his poetry is the message about nature. As much as we let nature flourish, we too, humanity, will prosper with it. So going out against nature will hurt us more as rightly conveyed by the poem of hope and positivity entitled “The world will bloom again”.
Processing his thoughts through simple and understandable words, the poet conveys that he is not bothered by what others think of him as everyone seems to be lost in this world. He strongly expresses his independence from his thought which he conveys through the poem entitled ‘My words’.
Don’t let anything overwhelm you while you “Show Your Existence” is another message conveyed as the poet urges himself and others to hold their heads high.
The title of the book is taken from a poem in the book of the same title “The Paradise” in which the poet visualizes all the bounty of Kashmir, his paradise on earth which contains all the celestial attributes like snowy winters, colorful springs, flowers. , glaciers, spring water clean with nectar, streams, meadows and pastures with golden autumns which of course are a real reality that make Kashmir; his Kashmir a paradise on earth.
The poet sheds light throughout his poems on the incredible quality of life, our need to keep learning as it is an endless process to progress, on the importance of planting trees and helping nature and on life as a drama in which each performs his act.
The poem entitled “The Father” brings out a personal side of the poet that of a loving son. The poem “My Childhood Toys” exposes his sweet human personality who always yearns for lost childhood toys that he wishes to one day find and restore.
The poet’s sensitivities towards the environment and the events surrounding it find a voice in the poem titled ‘The Lockdown’ which is caused by the Wuhan virus which is still prevalent around us and has reached even the the most remote corners of our world. The poet exalts everything to surrender to God whose blessings will save humanity from this virus.
The poet pays a heartfelt tribute to all corona warriors, be it medical staff, doctors, people in supply chains, cleaners, engineers, office workers and anyone who has played or is still playing their role in alleviating the suffering of the masses.
The “God is in Nature”; thus speaks the poet through his poem of the same title in the book. As no one has seen, it manifests itself in the bounty and elements of nature that are present around us. Although religious scriptures, songs and hymns are acceptable; the poet inspires everyone to explore, find and feel God through nature.
Uh. Vinod our nascent point here represents what Khalil Gibran would say “poetry is a matter of joy and pain in wonder, with a dash of dictionary”.
Overall, the book “Paradise” is an interesting read and learning experience for literature lovers and all ordinary readers. English Poetry/Historical Background is a well-researched addition to this poetry book that adds more sparkle to this edition. This being Er. Vinod’s first publication of English verse, he is not new to publishing, as evidenced by his earlier creations ‘Lal Ded’ his first publication in English in 2018 was followed by ‘Sheen’ in 2019. It was a book of short tales in Kashmiri language. Lately his third publication ‘Pott Aalav’; a Kashmiri language stage drama was released in 2020. Hope is there that in future again Er. Vinod will captivate us with more rhythmic, fluid and thoughtful verses.