Legendary Odisha Poet Jayanta Mahapatra’s Autobiography Is All About His Experiences Of Loving People

Bhubaneswar: ‘Bhor Motira Kanaphoola’, an autobiography of Jayanta Mahapatra in Odia language, chronicling his experiences while revealing the working of a poet’s mind, was released in Odisha capital on Saturday.

The first Indian poet to win a Sahitya Akademi award for English poetry, Mahapatra said that he started writing very late in life. “I was a Physics student and knew nothing about writing and poetry. Since I was educated in English, I gathered the courage to write in the language because I could use the words properly,” said the bilingual poet and essayist.

The Padma Shri awardee further said that all his works have always revolved around Odisha. “I do not think I have loved any other state more than Odisha. I decided to return to my state despite having had several opportunities to stay and work in other parts of the country. Cuttack was one of those reasons. I am completely in love with its weather and the rain. Even at the age of 94, I enjoy getting drenched in rain. I did it today too,” he said with a smile.

He said all good and strong poetry comes out of despair and takes shape from one’s tears and sweat.

Mahapatra said his book is not about events in his life but his experiences of loving people. “If I cannot love the people around me, how can I write poetry,” he said.

The book launch was attended by retired Justice Arun Parichha and Odia author-columnist Gourahari Das.

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