World poetry is trending now because of the possibilities of new media: An online interview with Ampat koshy
Dr A.V. Koshy is an Assistant Professor in the University of Jazan, Saudi Arabia. He has published four books -Wrighteings: In Media Res with A.V Varghese, A Treatise on Poetry for Beginners, 2 Phases: 50 Poems with Gorakhnath Gangane(Poetry) and Soul Resuscitation with Angel Meredith(Poetry). He was one of the editors of the Inklinks poetry anthology. Three new books due for publication are Samuel Beckett’s English Poetry: Transcending the Roots of Resistance in Language from Authorspress, and a book being co-edited with Bina Biswas on Mahesh Dattani’s Plays: Staging the Invisibles and a collection of short stories for Lifi.
He also writes for Newsloop, and was a columnist for Plum Tree Books UK. His poems, research essays and articles have been published in India and abroad. He serves on the advisory board of two academic journals and works in the field of autism along with his wife.
Dupur Mitra: Do you think poetry plays a role in your society? If yes how and if not why?
Ampat koshy: Yes. But let me first define society. I live in and visit several places in a year. Thiruvananthapuram, Bangalore and Jazan which is in Saudi Arabia, right now. I go to Delhi too, sometimes. In all these places poetry plays a role that is negligible in some ways but big if you think of it as regional and song lyrics. Poetry’s role is invisible and it’s difficult to pin it down. But these are all places that feels its impact ,even Jazan, not English poetry but regional poetry. Bangalore is the only place where English has a place. The effect of poetry is what one reads and grows up with and the impact of Urdu, Arabic, Malayalam is big.
Dupur Mitra: Who are your major influences as a poet?
Ampat koshy: Too many to name but Eliot would count for sure. Rilke, Russians, Rimbaud. Just said that to alliterate, Akhmatova. Lorca.
Dupur Mitra: What does being a poet mean to you?
Ampat koshy: Means finding what will kill me and loving it, means pretty near everything to me now.
Dupur Mitra: What is poetry?
Ampat koshy: When I suffer , when I weep , when I live, die, cry, am moved by beauty and madly in love I write and call it poetry, it flows from me.
Dupur Mitra: What are your observations about the trending of world poetry?
Ampat koshy: World poetry is trending now because of the possibilities of new media but it will take time for the dust to settle and people to figure out who the great poets were.
Dupur Mitra: Can a poetry movement improve poetry? If yes how, if not why?
Ampat koshy: It can if the ones in it are great poets. Surrealism succeeded but we don’t get to hear of the ones that failed.
Dupur Mitra: What is your opinion about today’s world poetry movement?
Ampat koshy: It’s always good to see poetry spread across the world but it also makes it pretty insignificant to have too many poets around.
Dupur Mitra: Describe the writing process in your poems.
Ampat koshy: I bleed red tears on to paper, mainly, and they become words and birds and fly away.
Dupur Mitra: Geographic travel played a role in your poetic life?
Ampat koshy: Yes, its effect is everywhere, my travels in India and Libya and Saudi Arabia leave their mark – but in an underground way. In a subtle and subterranean way.
Dupur Mitra: How would you describe contemporary poetry?
Ampat koshy: A lot of it is not good but there are a lot of good young poets and a lot of good positive energy flowing on, the main thing is it’s all about feelings and emotions now and not so much form in English poetry so I guess the Beats and the Romantics won big time. A lot of importance is given to reading it out aloud and well so it’s also a very auditory thing now, I rather like it but I feel it should go deeper.