The Creative Section (Vol. 5, No. 1) is on its way and will be published by the end of May, 2024.

Au Revoir: 50 Shades of Love and Tears by Apurba Bhuyan

 


Au Revoir: 50 Shades of Love and Tears by Apurba Bhuyan

 

Reviewed by

 

Dr. Sapna Dogra

Assistant Professor

 Department of English

Atal Bihari Vajpayee Government Degree College Sunni

Shimla, Himachal Pradesh University

Himachal Pradesh, India

 

Au Revoir: 50 Shades of Love and Tears| Poetry | Apurba Bhuyan |

Nexus Stories Publication, 2023, pp. 55, INR 150

ISBN 978-81-19-17811-7

Apurba Bhuyan’s Au Revoir: 50 Shades of Love and Tears is a thrumming and evocative poetry collection about loss and despair.It is a collection of 50 elegies depicting various shades of grief and sorrow. The book’s emphasis is startlingly inward in many ways, outlining channels and illuminating previously obscured areas while demonstrating how grief manifests mentally. Read together, Bhuyan’s verses have a shattering heart-breaking quality.

 

The book is dedicated to the author’s ‘loving son’ who ‘left suddenly and untimely’.How does one process grief and the irrevocable loss of a child? The poems in the collection are a veiled attempt at answering such a profound question. The blurb informs the readers:

 

Au Revoir - A collection of elegies in the form of free verse, ode, couplet, quatrain, and epigram composed by the promising poet and writer Apurba Bhuyan with profound grief, fond remembrance, sense of acceptance and liberation of pain on the backdrop of premature demise of his son during the time of Covid-19 pandemic in April, 2021. An energetic guy, a nature lover and promising shuttler with elegant skill in drawing and painting was rendering his service of front warrior as an intern doctor during Covid-19 pandemic, left for heavenly abode in a tragic accident. No lamentation can fill the void, but the expressions are unique and indeed stimulus to the readers.

 

The news of the death of the poet’s child came like a “sea wave” (5) splashing at the shore and changing the contours of his life. Even nature seems to join him in his mourning:

 

It is raining incessantly all the night

gusts of cool winds are entering

flapping the casements

the wind chimes are spreading sad melody

you are not here

in this night of rain and thunder

you are not here (6)

 

With endless grief in “long frosty night” (7),the poet feels the numbness of being left alone. It seems that a part of his self was burnt to ashes:

 

I could not see you in the burning pyre

as the fire broke out in my heart

in the dazed moon under the faded sun (8)

 

He questions: why the haste to leave the world so soon? The poet’s sunny life was suddenly left dark as the sun of their life sets forever with no hope of dawn.

 

What was the aspiration of the soul

what to accomplish so hastily

making the sunny sky instantly gloomy (15)

 

The deceased left “without an adieu” (17) and the father can only hope to meet him in the various aspects of nature. He feels his presence in the “lost dreams” (19) of

 

“gust of wind in the moonlight” (19)

“numbed nights” (19)

 

The poet refers to humans as guests in this word. Life is but a short stay.

 

Before leaving this inn

what have you offered (23)

 

Time spent with the lost child was spring, short-lived, leaving parents in a “prolonged winter tide” (25),

 

At the end of monsoon, you came

left during the blossoming Spring

abandoning a prolonged winter tide (25)

 

Finally, there’s a sense of acceptance of the “divine wish” (30) that is final and acceptance of the consequent human frailty to comprehend the divine will,

 

 

Everyone must proceed

Through the tunnel of life and death with no edge

What we see or judge is erroneous (31)

 

The poet often broods over the void and the emptiness left that can never be filled again.

 

Your bed, reading space

and the room is lying vacant

a dream is hanging on the half-drawn canvas

scratching the emptiness (41)

 

The collection becomes a poetic journey of a father’s love for his son and the consequent grief that he had to endure due to his son’s untimely death. While he grieves for his death, he also reminiscences his bond with God and his faith in divine will. The idea of mortality recurs frequently. The book tackles several issues, including the inevitability of death, attendant grief, and the passing of time. How does one cope with the death of a near and dear one? By having faith in the supreme power, the book seems to answer. With death comes burdensome grief. But he doesn’t wallow in grief instead he meditates on temporality. It’s an arresting effort to make sense of life and death.