Tuesday, May 07, 2013

Great Regulars: The work of a new generation of female

poets in Tamil has been one of the most charged spaces in the literature of that language in the last two decades. But these poets are often judged not by the quality of their language and imagery, or the density and detail with which they pursue their themes, but by the prevailing conventions of the world they live in--even the more liberal sections of that world. As the writer and translator Lakshmi Holmström observes, "For these past years, Tamil women poets have been categorized into 'Bad Girls' who write 'body poetry' and 'Good Girls' who refrain from doing so."

These poems, by four poets who have each at some point been tagged as "bad girls", are taken from Holmstrom's new anthology of translations Wild Girls Wicked Words (Sangam House/Kalachuvadu Publications).

from Caravan: Poetry: Seven Poems


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