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Bastar and Miscellaneous Poems

Nominated | Book Awards 2021 |

Bastar and Miscellaneous Poems

Bastar is a series of poems on Bastar, a part of the ancient Dandakaranya (modern-day Chhattisgarh).

Full Title: Bastar and Miscellaneous Poems

Author: K S RAM
Publisher: 

Award Category: 
About the Book: 

Bastar is a series of poems on Bastar, a part of the ancient Dandakaranya (modern-day Chhattisgarh). It is home to some of the most primitive and wonderful forest-tribes in the world. For over a century now, the tribes are reeling on the one hand, under the ways of bossy petty officials, traders and, now, the Naxals and, on the other hand, the 'schemes' of the Government and the evangelists who presume that the good of the tribes lies in 'mainstreaming' them. Bastar Rebellion (called 'Bhumkal') in 1910 was a flashpoint of the tribal rage against such 'development.'

It was a rape of our faith by a people,

Who professed religion, practised rituals,

Yet did not share our sense of the sacred.

Bhumkal [='Earthquake']

The 35 poems in this section are vignettes of this socio-spiritual-cultural conflict that continues even today. The author likes to describe this work as 'documentary poems.' Bastar, he believes, is a narrative of indigenous societies crumbling the world over under settlers' greed.

The second section of the book contains 33 Miscellaneous Poems on a wide range of unconventional topics, all with a spiritual undercu


About the Author: 

Krish 'K. S.' Ram was born in Mumbai, India and grew up in the USA, where he earned Bachelors and Masters degrees from Purdue University. He spent many years in the corporate world, with a successful career in Sales and Marketing. Following a diagnosis of Bipolar Disorder in 2002, he was forced to take a two-year break from his career. After undergoing an intensive course of medication and therapy, he earned an MBA and resumed his career, only to face a relapse in 2009 that left him declared permanently disabled.


Excerpt: 

Bastar is a series of poems on Bastar, a part of the ancient Dandakaranya (modern-day Chhattisgarh). It is home to some of the most primitive and wonderful forest-tribes in the world. For over a century now, the tribes are reeling on the one hand, under the ways of bossy petty officials, traders and, now, the Naxals and, on the other hand, the 'schemes' of the Government and the evangelists who presume that the good of the tribes lies in 'mainstreaming' them. Bastar Rebellion (called 'Bhumkal') in 1910 was a flashpoint of the tribal rage against such 'development.


Review: 

Bastar poems written by K S Ram have fascinatingly mirrored the lifestyle of adivasis living in the forests of Dandakaranya. The poems in their short simple story like fashion precisely depict the simplicity, innocence and self contentment of the tribes. The greedy exploitation where in the adivasis are forced to barter forest produce pains our hearts . The irony of the development leaving the tribals in a more pitiable state with reduced forest cover is highlighted. Their aggressive revolt against development to protect their mother earth equated to Bhumkal reveals their united spirited power
The Miscellaneous Poems offer an interesting realistic philosophical perspective some of them with underlying humor


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