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World Poetry Day | Poets and Poetry from North East India

On World Poetry Day, we compile our list of local authors from North East India, who have penned their deepest, most personal thoughts through poetry. Showcasing the variety of writers from the region especially seems apt on an international day like this – a day, that is intended to promote linguistic diversity.

Rootsandleisure-Poets from North East India

Vancouver Shullai from Shillong – author of ‘How To Love A Broken Man’

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Vancouver Shullai from Shillong – author of ‘How To Love A Broken Man’

“My poetry is, more often than not, a protest. There are poems that bring in a feel of the Romantics; they’re a lot like tea breaks from resentment. I hold every poem in equal regard because each of them comes from a place of extremely pure inspiration. To put it simply, I don’t force my poetry. If I feel it, I write it. If I don’t, I don’t.” ~ Vancouver Shullai

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‘The Wait’ by Vancouver Shullai

Michelle Rungsung from Manipur – author of ‘Garden in a Graveyard’

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Michelle Rungsung, poet and author of “Garden In A Graveyard”

“My readers are aware that most of my work revolves around my childhood memories and my home because it was where I began in the first place. I grew up in a broken family that scarred me mentally and emotionally but I think it also made me stronger and in the process taught me a lot about life.” ~ Michelle Rungsung

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An excerpt from “Garden in a Graveyard” by Michelle Rungsung

Tialila Kikon from Nagaland – author of ‘Paper Cranes’

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Tiali Kikon, at her work desk.

“I believe anything that touches the soul is beautiful and that’s what poetry is to me. There’s so much beauty in poetry. My love for poetry is quite old. I’ve always aspired to seek beauty all around, even in the most insignificant things, like reeds for instance. Perhaps, it is this aspiration that makes me a little quirky and forever, a dreamer. I’m inspired by life, love, human nature, relationships, children, photographs and lastly, nature which has inspiration in abundance.” ~ Tialila Kikon

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Tiali’s another work in collaboration with a young creative poet/illustrator from Spain, Debora Vladimirova.

Nongwarngam Chinir from Manipur – author of ‘Labyrinth’

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Nongwarngam Chinir from Manipur – author of ‘Labyrinth’

“Life is weird, it’s like a labyrinth without a map. Being human can suck at times, but while we are alive on this planet, I believe the noblest thing to do is to put our efforts into making this world a little better than how we found it.” ~ Nongwarngam Chinir

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Poem by Nongwarngam Chinir, Manipur

Emisen Jamir from Nagaland– Author of “Loneliness Is an Orange”

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Emisen Jamir – Author of “Loneliness Is an Orange”

Loneliness is an Orange is my first collection of poems. It was published by Barkweaver Publications in 2018. This collection speaks of everyday life and the varied emotions that go through people living seemingly mundane lives. In a world filled with people rushing through life, one can feel extremely isolated and alone—whether this means self-isolation or a growing loneliness is hard to determine. It questions the apathetic nature of the people (the writer included) and guilt in the inability to reconcile the past with the present.” ~ Emisen Jamir

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Poem by Emisen Jamir, Nagaland

Wedekhro Naro from Nagaland – author of “True Love Keeps Moving”

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Wedekhro Naro from Nagaland – author of “True Love Keeps Moving”

“I was born during a time where there was no internet or mobile phones. The only means of communication is through letter writing. I remember writing my first love letter when I was in class-2. I used to write love letters for my illiterate friends when I was in the village. I also remember writing a goodbye note to my subject teacher during the final exam on the last page of my answer sheet. I am not the perfect writer and never will be, but writing is something that is in me and might live in me for the rest of my life.” ~ Wedekhro Naro 

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Poem by Wedekhro Naro

Chirmi Shimray from Manipur – Author of “The Sea And I”

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Chirmi Shimray from Manipur – Author of “The Sea And I”

“I grew up reading the newspaper every day, filled with a world of bloodshed and violence and the fact that this world is so full of chaos made me want to dream for a life with less drama which influenced me to create my own little world through my writing. So this book was created out of my imagination and I aim to take my readers to a different World out of the war-zone into the calmness of the deep blue Sea. I hope that it implants some kind of tranquility to my readers.” ~ Chirmi Shimray

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‘The Sea And I’ by Chirmi Shimray

Yuimi Vashum From Manipur -Author of  “Love, Lust and Loyalty”

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Yuimi Vashum From Manipur -Author of  “Love, Lust and Loyalty”

“I’ve always been very sensitive about our community and my surrounding. I think somehow that is reflected on how a lot of my poems talk about our society in general, although I personalize it to my mother and family or a lover.” ~ Yuimi Vashum

Don’t mistake my writings for a rancor
Or misery.
I am not sad over what happened;
The aftertaste of sadness is too bitter.

I write so people can stop putting up an act
I write to break the shame in honesty. 
I write for the little kid
Who grew up dreading the night,
Jumping at every touch.
I write for people like me
So they don’t have to face their fear alone.

I write for the monsters
To show them the nights will no longer be theirs.
There shall be no more cries.

I write for battered souls like me
To forgive, forget, and only live;
That, what is done to us in the shadows
Shall not stop us from living life.
We are air
We don’t bend
We don’t break

We are unprecedented. – the survivors

~ Yuimi Vashum / “Love. Lust. And Loyalty”

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