These Were My Homes

These Were My Homes

Vijay Nambisan






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$6.64000 $4.97000

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(Hardback | ISBN 9789388070362 | 160 pp | Sep 2018)


‘In Vijay’s intelligent, self-aware meditations on mortality and human folly in this final and complete volume of his poems, readers will come to as close an apprehension of the nature of epiphany as is possible—to those sudden illuminations of the spirit that can, without warning, light up flares in our dull, corporeal bodies. [The] 111 poems in this slender volume written over his brief lifetime…display…a keen understanding of science and its uncompromising rationality (“radium decays a little bit at a time”), of the temporary bonds of love and desire, of waddling ducks and arching cats, of the particular genealogies of speech that Vijay came to inherit through his father, his grandparents, his mother and aunts, and of the questing history of our bipedal species… In the title poem of this volume, “These Were My Homes”, Vijay tracks a path from the safe womb to the single “bed in which to breathe my last of air”. I can think of few poets who have better traversed that eternal arc.’ —From the Introduction by Rukmini Bhaya Nair


‘Nambisan comes closest to being something I never thought existed—a natural poet with an ability to wrest a poem out of the rhythms of common speech and its idioms.’—Adil Jussawalla

‘We have art so that we may not perish by the truth, Nietzsche says, and Nambisan’s art is of the highest order, a reminder of what English-language poetry in India can do when the language is handled with skill and passion by someone who is so clearly in love with it, in all its moods, from sombre to playful, from dark to light.’—Arvind Krishna Mehrotra

'Vijay Nambisan's sensuous, intelligent, and often unsettling poems are parables for the time we live in now, without in any way being portentous or just topical.'—Amit Chaudhuri

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About the author

Vijay Nambisan

Vijay Nambisan (1963–2017) was a poet, writer of non-fiction, critic, journalist and translator. He won the first All India Poetry Competition (organized by the Poetry Society of India and the British Council) in 1990 with his poem ‘Madras Central’, and his debut collection, Gemini—a shared edition with Jeet Thayil, and introduced by Dom Moraes—was published […]

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