Seldom have we come across something which is both refreshingly new in its concept and also brilliant at the same time. Santosh Bakaya’s BALLAD OF BAPU is one such book. It is a biography of the great Mahatma Gandhi, but the entire biography is in poetic verses. An epic poem which unfolds in many layers the magnificent yet simple life of a Man who was truly a ‘Mahatma’.
In the foreward, Mr. Tushar A Gandhi, Great Grandson of Mahatma Gandhi justly writes,
‘…..Once upon this earth
Tells Santosh in her verses
The life of Mohan
The saga of a Mahatma’
This book is really a saga, an epic, a heroic attempt to chronicle history through poetry and we must applaud Santosh Bakaya’s courage in doing so, every bit of it is well researched, well written and well presented. It reflects the amount of hard work gone into this mammoth task. Santosh Bakaya is a master story teller and a brilliant poetess, and here she has combined her two skills to bring out a magnificent result. For example in the following lines from the chapter ‘Imprisonment’ we see simple lines taking shapes of stories. The entire book is filled with such simple yet poignant poetry.
‘In the Yervada prison, he did not feel insecure
The inconviniences he was ready to endure
In this experience new
There were pinpricks few
Life in yervada was like an ‘arrest cure’
This book is NOT for the faint-hearted, light readers. It demands your attention, your intellect, your love for poetry.
This book is aptly titled BALLAD OF BAPU, as Ballads are a narrative poem, often of folk origin, consisting of simple stanzas and usually having a refrain. The book is written in beautiful poetic verses, following the rhyme scheme of AABBA. The entire journey of Mahatma Gandhi’s life is broken into chapters, which makes it easier to follow. The book also has excellent photographs accounting some of the memorable points of the Mahatma’s life, which makes the reading pleasant.
In the last lines of this poignant poetic saga, Santosh Bakaya writes,
‘A remarkable saga had come to an end tragic
Churchill’s half-naked fakir for many was quixotic
But now this man homeward bound
Mingling with the dust, immortality found.
The ordinary melted with extraordinary to emerge heroic.’
I recommend this book to all lovers of poetry and admirers of Mahatma Gandhi. It is INNOVATIVE, BRAVE, INSPIRATIONAL and SUBLIME.
This beautiful book is published by Renu Kaul Verma of Vitasta Publishing, New delhi and is available for purchase on amazon.in.
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Her book page
To know more about the author read her inspirational story/interview on
Incredible Women Of India.